An artwork, a community kitchen, a social practice project and a dance floor!
The Funnest Room in the House is a portal back to ancestral homelands of the Black diaspora. Celebrating the kitchen space as an archive that charts the many journeys of the diaspora to the UK.
This installation led by multi-disciplinary artist Anna Maria Nabirye will invite visitors to travel through time and explore a Black British kitchen, collected from many pasts.
Working in partnership with Artsadmin and Whitechapel Gallery, The Funnest Room in the House is currently being developed in phases over 2024/25. Following a period of engagement and connection with diasporic communities from across the city the project will inhabit a temporary space for 3 months in the East End in summer 2025. Living and breathing as an art installation including audio, video photography, fabrication and found objects, it will also be a place where the community is invited to eat, hold gatherings and events.
The Funnest Room in the House takes inspiration from the kitchens of Nabirye’s childhood and those of the diaspora. Intimate spaces that were individual to each family’s life but were also a performance of collective culture, containing expressions of ancestral homelands and nostalgia for back-home mashed up with British culture.
This slice of social history is quietly disappearing, for the most part unrecorded, with kitchen renovations filling skips around the country, the gentrification of inner-city areas dispersing communities and links to homelands feeling further and further away as elders pass on to become ancestors.
The Funnest Room in the House joyfully brings these kitchens and their stories into the spotlight, celebrating their multi-role playing and shape-shifting abilities; rooms to cook, to eat, to gather, to hide, to bathe, to learn to dance.
It is anticipated that further iterations of the Funnest Room can be developed for other contexts, hosted by partners/cultural organisations and connecting with local diasporic communities.
For more information on this project, please contact Nicky Childs at firstname.lastname@example.org
Developed from an original commission from Cement Fields for Whitstable Biennale 2022. This new iteration of The Funnest Room In The House is being developed in partnership with Whitechapel Gallery and Artsadmin.
Supported with funds from Cement Fields and Jerwood Arts.
Produced by Nicky Childs, Artsadmin