Nicole Rafiki

Born in Kongo 1989. Lives and works in Johannesburg, South Africa and in Oslo.

Nicole Rafiki is a visual artist, writer, and editor. She is the founder and editor of the YPPĒ coffee table book and the Oslo-based non-profit Rafiki Art Initiatives, an organization for the promotion of African and diasporan art.


Rafiki´s experiences with migration and exile are the inspiration and driving force behind her art. As an interdisciplinary artist, she uses symbolism to re-imagine and challenge stereotypical depictions of the spaces, contexts, and identities of people who are affected by Global Migration.


Rafiki recently curated and arranged Good Mourning, a public performance and participatory public art project about creating a safe space to navigate through the different stages of grief and survivor’s guilt by utilizing art as a tool. Through artist-led workshops, both creatives and the public produced visual artworks that were later exhibited at Kunstplass gallery in Oslo.


For Coast Contemporary Rafiki will present photography from her ongoing series.

Former exhibitions include: Descendants, 2018 – ongoing. A public art exhibition and photography series taking place outdoors in the cities of Trondheim, Oslo, Kristiansand and Bergen inspired by the UN Decade for People of African Descent, 2015–2024. Good Mourning, public performance, Oslo, 2020. Still Rising, Oslo, 2019. Nordic Light Festival, Cyan Gallery, 2019. Speak Exhibition, a group exhibition by High Caliber about work, commitment, messages, voices, and artist pain. The event featured 21 contemporary artists from the African continent in Johannesburg, 2019.


Upcoming exhibitions include Ascension at Fotografihuset in Oslo.

Instagram: ms.rafiki & rafikiarts