Born 1973 in Washington, D.C.; lives and works in New York.
Believing that our era is characterized most of all by fictiveness, Kianga Ford makes art that explores narrative as a lived and immersive experience. Her works include interactive audio recordings that blend her short fictions with music and oral histories, as well as immersive sound and video installations that create a three-dimensional story experience. In her projects, which are often site-specific, Ford draws variously on the conventions of cinema and television to explore the ways in which we negotiate and are negotiated through the fictions that we tell about one another. In 2003 Ford began a series of audio walking tours, gathered under the rubric The Story of This Place, which combine fact and fiction to explore a city’s history, communities, and culture. The project so far includes tours of Los Angeles; Winston-Salem, North Carolina; Baltimore; and other cities; the tour of the latter, subtitled Charm City Remix (2008), is a forty-five-minute guided walk through Baltimore’s Mount Vernon neighborhood. Participants used iPods to listen to Ford’s narrative, a fictional history of real places that was based on her conversations with city residents. An original sound track, written by a local composer, accompanied the stories. Ford has described Charm City Remix as “a provocation to look at the place you’re in in a different way, to look at the people around you in a different way…I want that moment when it all comes together—the light, the music, the narrative, the people—to inspire a sense of, if not awe, then connectedness.”