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Alanna Lockward. Photo: Miguel Gomez.

Alanna Lockward (1961–2019)

Author, curator, and filmmaker Alanna Lockward has died, reports Monopol. Her unexpected passing on January 7 was first announced by Berlin’s Maxim Gorki Theater, where Lockward was expected to participate in the institution’s fourth autumn salon. The arts professional, who most recently served as a research professor at the Pontificia Universidad Católica Madre y Maestra Center of Caribbean Studies in the Dominican Republic, was fifty-seven years old.

Born in Santo Domingo, the capital of the Dominican Republic, on March 23, 1961, Lockward first trained as a dancer before continuing her studies at the Universidad Autónoma Metropolitana Xochimilco in Mexico City and then at the Universität der Künste in Berlin. In 1996, she cofounded the Art Labor Archives, a cultural platform that organized art events and exhibitions focusing on activism, postcolonial theory, and art in the United States, the Caribbean, Africa, and Europe, and after a decade of research, completed her dissertation at the Humboldt University Berlin.

An activist and journalist, Lockward often fought against social injustice and was an advocate for the decolonization of commemorative culture. She was the cultural editor of Listín Diario, an investigative journalist for Rumbo magazine, and a columnist at the Miami Herald. Lockward also published four books, including the novel Marassá and the Nothingness (Partridge Africa, 2016) and Un Haití Dominicano: Tatuajes fantasmas y narrativas bilaterales (1994–2014) (Santuario, 2014), an anthology of her writings on the challenges facing Haiti and the Dominican Republic.

Over the course of her career, Lockward worked as the director of international affairs at the Museo de Arte Moderno in Santo Domingo, the general manager at the Transnational Decolonial Institute, and a guest lecturer at Humboldt; the Decolonial Summer School Middelburg and the Dutch Art Institute, the Netherlands; Malmö Art Academy, Sweden; and Goldsmiths, University of London. She also served on a number of juries for national and international awards.

Lockward’s other achievements include the annual Berlin-based curatorial initiative the BE.BOP. Black Europe Body Politics, which she conceived of and launched in 2012, and the documentary film The Allen Report: Retracing Transnational African Methodism (2016), which received the 2013 FONPROCINE production award. The film explores the legacy of the African Methodist Episcopal Church in the United States and its global, theological influence.