British filmmaker John Akonfrah will be artist-in-residence this Spring at New York University’s Institute of African American Affairs. He is joined by the Ethiopian-American musician Meklit Hadero. The institute has a number of events planned around these two with the theme “The African Diaspora And/In The World.” They’re described as being “at the forefront of … [the] politics of new Pan-Africanism formations.” The institute’s website does not say much else as to what that implies (nor do the email notices I receipt about Akomfrah’s visit),so we’ll find out over the next two months.

It is the first time I hear of Hadero, but Akomfrah, born in Ghana and raised in Britain, is a brilliant filmmaker.

He has made almost 20 films (including on Martin Luther King Jnr. and Malcolm X). ¬†Try and see his 1986 film “Handsworth Songs,” about racism and racial violence in 1980s Britain; a masterpiece. There’s also “The Last Angel of History/Mothership Connection” (1995). I have also heard great things about his most recent film, “Mnemosyne.”

At various point they’ll be joined by filmmaker Jean-Pierre Bekolo (from Cameroon), academic and poet Fred Moten, some of the participants of the Black Portrait Symposium, Ethiopian-American musician Danny Mekonnen, and artist Coco Fusco.

Details here.

Separately, Hadero will perform a concert on April 3rd. Here’s a sample: