Xenogenisis: An Alien Becoming.

Submitted by Audrey Ampomah

VBLM 804 Correspondent


Stamps from Ghana are so captivating, that combined with the right sounds, they create a "science fiction of the present."


Xenogenesis is a mixed-media piece by The Otolith Group; Kodwo Eshun and Anjalika Sagar founded the group in 2002. Heavy inspiration for the exhibit was taken from sci-fi writer, Octavia Butler’s Xenogenesis Trilogy (later renamed Lilith’s Brood).

The title “Xenogenesis” alludes to the idea of an “alien becoming."

Octavia Estelle Butler featured at the VCU Institute of Contemporary Art.

The exhibit encompasses two sub-exhibits:


Statecraft: An Incomplete Timeline of Independence, 2014-ongoing. This piece is a collection of lightbox installations featuring various commemorative postage stamps that document the creation of African nation states as well as simultaneous coups d’etat.



In the Year of the Quiet Sun: This piece is an archived film in HD video showcasing the pan-African unification in the medium of commemorative stamps issued by Ghana’s government between 1957 and 1966.


In the Year of the Quiet Sun, 2013.

Xenogenesis is currently on display at The Institute for Contemporary Art in Richmond, Virginia now through May of 2020.




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