17 – 26 November 2010
Kenya’s Nubians: Then & Now is the first London exhibition for photographer Greg Constantine (USA, b. 1970), combining rare, historical photographs of the Nubian community in Kenya dating back to 1912 with Constantine’s recent work on the community’s struggle for recognition. The exhibition aims to promote the dynamic and rich history of a community few in Kenya and the United Kingdom are aware of, and it intends to help tell the story of a community who, as one Nubian elder described is, “being squeezed into extinction”.
Incorporated into the British Army in the late 1880s and brought to Kenya from Sudan by the British at the turn of the century, Nubians served for the British in the King’s African Rifles during WWI and II and were vital to the development of Kenya and East Africa. After Kenyan Independence, the Nubian community has historically been denied recognition and has been one of Kenya’s most invisible and under-represented communities. Over the past 40 years, hundreds of thousands of rural migrants have flooded into Nairobi in search of work and Kibra has been the land where they’ve been encouraged to settle. All of the Nubian’s claims to the land provided to them by the British have been denied. Eventually the Nubian settlement of Kibra would turn into Kibera, one of the largest slums in Africa.
Greg Constantine is a freelance photographer from the US. His work has been recognised in Pictures of the Year International, NPPA Best of Photojournalism and the Amnesty International Human Rights Press Awards (Hong Kong). He has received the SOPA Award for Feature Photography from the Society Of Publishers in Asia, the Harry Chapin Media Award for Photojournalism and was co-winner of the Osborn Elliott Prize for Journalism in Asia for his work in Burma after Cyclone Nargis. His work has been widely published and exhibited and in 2009, he was named a finalist for the Getty For Good Grant and was awarded an OSI Distribution Grant. He is currently based in Southeast Asia.
This exhibition was supported in part by a grant from the Documentary Photography Project of the Open Society Institute and has been produced with the assistance of the European Union. The contents of this exhibition are the sole responsibility of the producer and can in no way be taken to reflect the views of the European Union.