Understanding Afro-futurism by TJ Benson

The panel is a fiery one. The notion of identity and evolution on the African continent is explored by Wole Talabi who was recently shortlisted for the Caine Prize, Tochi Onyebuchi who won the 2018 Nommo for his novel Beasts Made of Night and Tosin Oshinowo, a celebrated architect and photographer.

The panel is moderated by Geoff Ryman who comments to everyone’s acclaim “I don’t believe the term Magical Realism applies to Africa. You never lost your spirituality, you never lost your customs.” He asks Tosin about her life as a multifaceted artist and she comments that she does not believe there is any creative who does only one thing. She believes this is tied to creativity and that the new generation of Nigerians consume indigenous art which came from a stronger sense of identity and self.

Wole believes that we are still in the stage of regaining our history. He spends his time imagining African futures without the lens of the west. This is also something important to Tosin’s architecture work.

Wole says that it is terrible that till this day, people define science as a body of work from the west, he believes every nation has its own science, its own way of doing things and as we evolve into the future we must evolve with them, and leave behind the things that don’t serve us.