How would you re-imagine Cole builds on Re-imagining Cole symposium held in 2017. How would you re-imagine Cole were a series of performances and conversations delivered in three distinct locations, Northern School of Art, Hartlepool, Africa Centre, London and M Shed, Bristol, to capture different voices and interpretations about Christian Frederick Cole.
The event featured a performance piece developed from the original ten minutes piece performed at the Re-Imagining Cole symposium in 2017. The interpretation, written and produced by Pamela Roberts and delivered by professional actors, Prince Plockey and Moses Alexander, illustrates the relationship between Christian Cole and Joseph Renner Maxwell, both Sierra Leone students at the University of Oxford in 1876. Maxwell has his image captured professionally; Cole depicted only as a caricature. Why was this?
The piece depicted a fictionalized meeting demonstrating their intense conflict, rivalry and spirited exchanges, interweaving the themes and issues of heritage, identity, class, social mobility, colourism, belonging and acceptance, the outsider within the establishment. A discussion followed debating the question 'How would you re-imagine Cole?'
" Fantastic event. A very moving performance. The issues raised in this historical piece have relevance today." Dr Des Oliver
'A deeply moving discussion on what it is to be human and the construction of identity'.
'Amazing performance. Wonderful to know that this incredible story and achievements are getting better know around the UK'.
Karen Garvey, M Shed, Bristol
'A hugely stimulating performance and discussion in tribute to Sierra Leonean Christian Cole'. Kenneth Tharp CBE, Director, Africa Centre.