Jitterbug is part of The Artangel Collection. Since its premiere at the Rio Cinema on 8th March 2022, it has been exhibited at the Museum of the Home in London and had its world festival premiere at Cannes Film Festival 2022, as part of the 54th Directors’ Fortnight selection.

  • Artist: Ayo Akingbade
  • Title: Jitterbug
  • Date: 2022
  • Medium: 16mm film transferred to video
  • Dimensions: variable.  
  • Duration: 23 minutes 30 seconds
A man and woman having a conversation in a kitchen. The photograph is taken onlooking from the window outside. There are leaves obstructing parts of the window.

Set in Hackney at a time of rampant gentrification, Jitterbug offers a soulful portrait of teenagers coming of age just as their community is being torn apart by forces beyond their control. The film chronicles a day in the life of eighteen-year-old student Afeni Omolade, played by Amara Okereke, who lives with her parents and younger brother in a council block. Afeni is on the cusp of leaving home to realise her dream of studying History of Art at Cambridge University when unexpected news suddenly hits. Shot on 16mm film, Akingbade tracks a rollercoaster ride of youthful hope and adult resignation, anger, and resilience as Afeni, her parents Precious and Julius, and her brother Kofo each deal with the devastating news.

Image: Still from Ayo Akingbade's Jitterbug (2022).

Previous Presentations

Since the launch of The Artangel Collection, Jitterbug has been installed at

  • Jarman Award 2023 Tour: The MAC Belfast; g39, Cardiff; Nottingham Contemporary; CCA Glasgow; Spike Island, Bristol; Towner Eastbourne; Whitechapel Gallery, London and B3 Biennial of the Moving Image, Frankfurt 21 September – 21 November 2023
  • New Directors/New Films, The Museum of Modern Art and Film at Lincoln Center, New York, 2, 3 April 2023 
  • Museum of the Home, London, 09 March - 08 May 2022
  • Cannes Film Festival 2022, as part of the 54th Directors’ Fortnight selection