Chuma Adam (b. 2001) is an emerging artist based in Johannesburg, South Africa.
She is a multidisciplinary artist exploring painting, printmaking, and drawing. Her bodies of work are primarily informed by a philosopher
she greatly admires, Édouard Glissant, and his theory on opacity from his acclaimed book, Poetics of Relation. “When thinking about opacity,” Adam says, “I think about being opaque. Visible, but indescribable.”
Chuma’s works challenge themes of visibility, or lack thereof, as she dances around the complex tropes of Blackness and self-actualisation in the realms of her Black identity. Chuma mainly works through these thoughts, emotions, and conceptual processes through the abstraction of the intangible complexities of navigating one’s self. Chuma creates feelings of abstruse vulnerability through her immersive visual language.
Rapt: Self-actualization and Healing Through Blackness (2023)
“Healing is overcoming transgenerational trauma, is reprogramming DNA memory, is raising vibrational frequency, is shifting consciousness, is living from heart, is dancing until exhaustion, is disciplining the mind, is taking responsibility, is trusting intuition, is honouring our ancestors and descendants, is companionate loving, is listening to soul, while holding each other’s hands on the journey.
So that we may be whole, home, safe, enough, cared for, full and loved as intended […]
Repeat until you smile inside.
Repeat until you believe it deep down.
If decoloniality sets the relationship between the self and the world, healing reveals the inner relationship between one’s finite and infinite self.
Decolonial healing is a praxis of love in service of collective consciousness and liberation. It is a remembrance and honouring of the land, the heart, each other and the wisdoms of those who listened to the unheard song.”
-Tabita Rezaire in Decolonial Healing: In Defence of Spiritual Technologies (2019)