This is Lesley Lokko, curator of the 18th Architecture Venice Biennale

Words by Gaia Laura Cocciolillo
December 16, 2021

The Board of La Biennale di Venezia has named Lesley Lokko as curator of the  18th International Architecture Exhibition, which will take place from 20th May to 26th November 2023.

Lokko is the first black woman responsible for curating a Venice Biennale. Born in Dundee, Scotland, and raised in Ghana, Lokko is an established personality among academics, with a large number of publications to her name, such as “White Papers, Black Marks: Race, Space and Architecture”. She has taught in the UK, in the US, Europe, Australia and Africa and founded the Graduate School of Architecture at the University of Johannesburg in 2015. From 2020 she is the founder and director of the African Futures Institute, established in Accra, Ghana. In 2021, Lokko was a member of the International Jury of the 17th Architecture Biennale in Venice.

In her academic research, Lokko investigates the relations between architecture and race, aiming to give a voice to marginalised identities, including them in a history of architecture that goes beyond western constructs. By nominating Lesley Lokko as curator of the  18th Architecture Biennale, the Board, headed by President Roberto Cicutto, is making the history of this institution. The Architecture Biennale is opening the door to a radical change of perspective on architecture with an inclusive and critical approach.

Lokko was awarded the RIBA Annie Spink Award for Excellence in Education 2020 and the AR Ada Louise Huxtable Prize for Contributions to Architecture 2021.


Keep up to date with My Art Guides
Sign up to our newsletter and stay in the know with all worldwide contemporary art events