Wasswa Donald Augustine a.k.a., Waswad (b. 1984), is a reanimator—taking materials derived from once living organisms and breathing new life into them through the creation of sculptures, installations, and two-dimensional works. He is among a number of artists working around the globe to consider a future where humans are transformed through technology and/or evolution into “transhumans.” Exploring Waswad’s practice, this article will situate his work within the context of transhumanist theories and their application within Africa. It will examine how the artist, inspired by current social, political, and economic events, is using his work to respond to the historical and contemporary impacts, both positive and negative, of technology to the lives and bodies of those on the African continent as well as the wider environment. The works of art that he creates refer directly to his experiences in Uganda and, more broadly, the hybrid technological and natural quality of his forms resonant with many global anxieties about the current changes going on in the world. This article examines how Waswad’s exploration of new avenues for evolution asks us to consider the wider impacts of the Anthropocene age in which we are now living.
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Research Article| November 01 2022
Waswad the Reanimator
Nka (2022) 2022 (51): 22–33.
Carol Boram-Hays; Waswad the Reanimator. Nka 1 November 2022; 2022 (51): 22–33. doi: https://doi.org/10.1215/10757163-10127125
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