The Front Room ‘Inna Joburg’ & The Arrivants

28 July - 19 August 2016

This 2016 exhibition was produced by Dr Michael McMillan in association with the VIAD Research Centre. McMillan, a UK based writer-artist-curator recreates a traditional African-Caribbean family front room. He invokes experiences from his childhood and that of his family as they attempted to create a West Indian identity as immigrants in England during the 1960s. The room’s arrangement reflects the practice of ‘putting one’s best foot forward’ – the front room must always look immaculate to give the public world the best possible impression of the private world of the family.

The exhibition was a component of McMillan’s residency at VIAD (funded by Arts Council England/British Council). The installation was used as a site for workshops and presentations around oral history and material culture. The opening included a collaboration performance with Christine Checinska titled ‘BACK A YARD’.