Artist CV

Artist bio:

SA Smythe is a Black trans artist, critical theorist, and educator. They choreograph cartographies of black belonging, integrating (visual and text-based) poetry, performance, light sculptures, sound composition, photography, and found footage/archival ephemera to witness the thrival of all our relations beyond every border. Smythe’s transmedia art has been featured in collaborative and solo exhibitions, installations, edited poetry collections, and festivals. Most recently and forthcoming include at the Blackwood Gallery (2023), the Art Gallery of York University (2023), FADO Performance Art Centre (2023), the Bell Gallery at Brown (2023-24), Berkeley Arts Centre (2023), CANGO (Florence, 2022), GXRLSCHOOL (Los Angeles, 2019), Kampnagel (Hamburg, 2021), Dark Matter Cypher member under Sage Ni’Ja Whitson (Fathomers/CAAM, 2020), co-headliner for the Africa Writes Literary Festival (London, 2016), and the Mattatoio Museum (Rome, 2022). Their poetry work has been featured in Catapult, Apogee, We Have Never Asked Permission to Sing: Poetry Celebrating Trans Resilience, Feminist Wire, okayafrica, California Fire & Water: Climate Crisis Anthology, contemp(t)orary, Johannesburg Salon, We Were Most Honest When Language Split Open: Queer and Trans Black Writers of Latin American Descent on Memory, Care, and Futures, and elsewhere. Recipient of the 2022 Rome Prize, SA Smythe is currently based between Tkaronto, Rome, and occupied Tongva land. They are Assistant Professor of Black Studies & the Archive at the University of Toronto, where they are direct the Collaboratory for Black Poiēsis.

Recent Exhibitions & Live Performances

2022 | proclivity, SPAZIO GRIOT @ Mattatoio
SEDIMENTS. After Memory, Mattatoio Museum, Rome, Italy
Curator: Johanne Affricot

2022 | ALTRIMENTI – ALTRE / MENTI, PIA | Palazzina Indiano Arte
Live collaborative performance with Autumn Knight, Florence, Italy
Curator: Serena Trinchero

2022 | Group Open Studio Exhibition, American Academy in Rome

2021 | Hope for All Who Enter, Suderie del Quirinale, INFERNO Exhibition, Rome, Italy

2020 | Dark Matter Cypher, Ni’Ja Whitson (director/choreographer) / Fathomers (producer)

2019 | JELLY, GirlSchool and The Dept. of Cultural Affairs for ComposeLA

Selected Poetry Readings

2021  | Keynote, “Black Possibility across the Mediterranean,” Kampnagel, Hamburg

2016  | Sex, Love & Poetry, headline event for Africa Writes Literary Festival, London


“Al Mattatoio di Roma, lo Spazio Griot è il luogo dove le culture si mescolano,” VOGUE Italia

10 Poets and Artists Share Their Visions for Trans Liberation,”

“Ep. 57: Black QTPOC (with Travis Alabanza),” Lunar Poetry Podcast

Review of Travis Alabanza with SA Smythe at HousmansHYSTERIA

“Lunar Poetry Short: SA Smythe,” Lunar Poetry Podcast