|Full Name Jim Chuchu|
Music group Just a Band
Role Film director
|Name Jim Chuchu|
Years active 2006-present
Awards Teddy Jury Award
|Born August 7, 1982 (age 41) (1982-08-07) Nairobi, Kenya|
Occupation Director, photographer, singer-songwriter, visual artist, record producer
Movies Stories of Our Lives, African Metropolis, Homecoming
Albums Scratch to Reveal, 82, To Hell With Gravity EP, Stories of Our Lives: Music from and Inspired By the Film
Similar People Marie Ka, Philippe Lacote, Wanuri Kahiu, Kemi Adesoye, Paul Ogola
Director Jim Chuchu on banning of his gay Kenyan film
Jim Chuchu is a Kenyan film director, photographer, singer-songwriter and visual artist. He first came to attention as a member of Kenyan music group Just A Band and subsequently as director of Kenyan LGBT film Stories of Our Lives.
- Director Jim Chuchu on banning of his gay Kenyan film
- 2006 2012 Early career
- 2014 Stories of Our Lives
- Feature Films
- Short Films
- Group exhibitions
- Studio albums
- EPs and Singles
- Mixtapes and Remix Albums
After leaving college in 2006, where he studied telecommunications, Chuchu began his career as a graphic designer, working in advertising. He quit his job to become a freelance graphic designer in late 2006.
2006-2012: Early career
In 2008, Chuchu co-founded Just A Band together with fellow members Bill "Blinky" Sellanga and Dan Muli, whom he had met while studying at the Kenyatta University. Jim performed multiple duties in the band, including co-producing the band's first three studio albums, Scratch to Reveal, 82 and Sorry for the Delay, creating graphic art for the band and directing many of the band's videos - including "Ha-He" which spawned viral hit Makmende, causing the video to be subsequently described as Kenya's first viral internet meme by the Wall Street Journal, CNN and Fast Company.
In 2012, Chuchu co-founded the NEST, a multidisciplinary art space and collective in Nairobi.
In March 2013, Chuchu produced and released Imaginary Chains as pseudonymous act Adeiyu. One of the EP singles - Hollow - was featured in the Mercedes Benz Mixed Tape 55. He followed this EP by releasing the single You Can't Break Her Heart in September 2013.
In October 2013, Just A Band announced that Chuchu had left the band to pursue his solo projects. Following his exit, Chuchu then directed his first short film Homecoming as part of the African Metropolis project, which premiered at the 2013 Durban International Film Festival, then went on to screen at the 2013 Toronto International Film Festival, and the International Film Festival Rotterdam, Santa Barbara International Film Festival, the Film Festival Locarno and the Seattle International Film Festival in 2014.
In April 2014, Chuchu's photography series titled Pagans was featured in the 2014 edition of Dak’Art, the 11th Biennale of Contemporary African Art, as part of the Precarious Imaging: Visibility and Media Surrounding African Queerness exhibition in Dakar, Senegal. The show was cancelled a day after its opening by Senegalese authorities, who ruled that ruled that future exhibitions addressing the issue of homosexuality must be closed or canceled.
2014: Stories of Our Lives
In September 2014, Chuchu released his first feature film, Stories of Our Lives, an anthology of five short films dramatizing true stories of LGBT life in Kenya which he directed as part of the NEST Collective. The film premiered at the 2014 Toronto International Film Festival, where it originally ran without credits due to the collective's concerns about the film's reception in Kenya, where homosexuality is illegal. Following the premiere, Chuchu and fellow NEST Collective members George Gachara and Njoki Ngumi opted to reveal their names at the screening and in an interview with Toronto's LGBT newspaper Xtra!. The soundtrack to the film, for which Chuchu produced and performed four songs, was released in late September as a free download.
Jim's photography and video works have been exhibited in the following group exhibitions: