SOAS University of London

Department of the History of Art and Archaeology, School of Arts

Dr Charles Gore

MA, PHD (London), PGCE
  • Teaching
  • Research
  • Expertise
  • Publications


Charlie Gore
Department of History of Art and Archaeology, School of Arts

Research Associate

Centre for Migration and Diaspora Studies


Dr Charles Gore
Email address:
020 7898 4443
SOAS University of London
Thornhaugh Street, Russell Square, London WC1H 0XG
Brunei Gallery
Office No:
Academic Support Hours:
By email appointment


Dr Charles Gore received advanced degrees from SOAS under the supervision of Professor John Picton. He has carried out extensive research in southern Nigeria for 20 years at Benin City in Edo state working with practitioners of the local indigenous religion and with brasscasters; and also carried out research in Anambra and Ondo states; and in the Niger delta. He was the consultant for Artist Unknown (1995) a BBC film made about the arts of Benin City. Along with doing research as an art historian and anthropologist, he works as an artist (figurative, expressionist) in various media (oil, watercolour, pastel, mixed media, etching, monotypes, photography).


PhD Students supervised
  • Atsushi Ikeda, Portraying the Guru: Art and Identity in Sikhism
  • Daphne Ang, The Production and Patronage of Portraiture in Colonial Singapore
  • David Malik, Urban Art Forms in Freetown, Sierra Leone, and their Roles in the Making of Diasporic Identities in Communities in London, United Kingdom
  • Helena Cantone, Decolonising the Visual Archive of Salvatore Fiume (1915-1997): Italian Encounters with Postcolonial Africa
  • Maeve Nolan, Early Silk Road photography: A case study of how and why Dr. Maynard Owen Williams, Litt. D. (1888-1963) photographed the Silk Road during the Citroen-Haardt Trans-Asiatic Expedition (1931-1932)


Benin studies and West Africa; African art; African visual cultures, including the mass media such as African photography, film, video and the internet; performance, religion and ritual in contemporary African societies; approaches to "popular culture" and its relations to regional/global knowledges; linkages between Africa and its diasporic arts; indigenous approaches to health and healing.


For help in contacting SOAS academics and advice on services to business and the community, please contact SOAS Enterprise on +44(0)20 7898 4837 or email
For all press and media enquiries please call +44 (0)20 7898 4135 or email

Available for
Regional Expertise
  • Africa
  • North America
Country Expertise
  • Cameroon
  • Cuba
  • Ghana
  • Haiti
  • Mali
  • Nigeria
  • Senegal
  • Sierra Leone


Authored Books

Gore, Charles (2007) Art, Performance and Ritual in Benin City. Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press.


Gore, Charles (2015) 'Intersecting Archives: Intertextuality and the Early West African Photographer'. African Arts, (48) 3, pp 6-17.

Gore, Charles (2015) 'Leonce Raphael Agbodjelou: Artist Interview'. African Arts, (48) 3, pp 70-75.

Gore, Charles (2015) 'African Photography'. African Arts, (48) 3, pp 1-5.

Gore, Charles (2013) 'Neils Walwin Holm: Radicalising the Image in Lagos Colony, West Africa'. History of Photography, (37) 3, pp 283-300.

Gore, Charles (2008) 'Masks and Modernities'. African Arts, (41) 4, pp 1, 4-7.

Gore, Charles (2008) '“Burn the Mmonwu” Contradictions and Contestations in Masquerade Performance in Uga, Anambra State in Southeastern Nigeria'. African Arts, (41) 4, pp 60-73.

Gore, Charles and Pratten, David (2003) 'The Politics of Plunder: The Rhetorics of Order and Disorder in Southern Nigeria'. African Affairs, (102) 407, pp 211-240.

Gore, Charles (2001) 'Commemoration, Memory and Ownership: Some Social Contexts of Contemporary Photography in Benin City, Nigeria'. Visual Anthropology, (14) 3, pp 321-42.

Gore, Charles (2000) 'A Record of War, Southern Nigeria'. Songlines, (8) autumn/win, pp 40-41.

Gore, Charles (1999) 'Vodou Nation [Bagley Studios, London May 15 and Cream, Liverpool, May 22, 1998]'. African Arts, (32) 2, pp 77-79.

Gore, Charles (1997) 'Casting Identities in Contemporary Benin City'. African Arts, (30) 3, pp 54-61.

Gore, Charles and Nevadomsky, Joseph (1997) 'Practice and Agency in Mammy Wata Worship in Southern Nigeria'. African Arts, (30) 2, pp 60-69.

Gore, Charles and Morton-Williams, Peter (1997) 'Remembering R. E. Bradbury: An Interview with Peter Morton-Williams'. African Arts, (30) 4, pp 36-45.

Gore, Charles (1997) 'Remembering R.E.Bradbury: An Interview with Professor Peter Morton-Williams'. African Arts, (30) 4, pp 36-45.

Book Chapters

Gore, Charles (2018) 'Yoruba Remixed: Wole Lagunju'. Yoruba Remixed Wole Lagunju. Capetown, South Africa: Ebony Gallery, pp 2-7.

Gore, Charles (2014) 'Celebrating Trajectories of Nigerian Photography'. In: Adeyinka, Ayo and Gore, Charles, (eds.), Nigerian Centenary Photography Exhibition. London: Tafeta, pp 10-23.

Gore, Charles (2010) 'El Anatsui and his Artworlds'. In: Kawaguchi, Y. and Takezawa, S. and Matsumoto, H. and Mizusawa, T. and Asaki, T. and Nakamura, M. and Shibuya, T., (eds.), A Fateful Journey: Africa in the Works of El Anatsui. Japan: The Yomiuri Shimbun, The Japan Association of Art Museums: Japan, pp 174-185.

Gore, Charles (2009) 'Religion in Africa'. In: Woodhead, Linda and Kawanami, Hiroko and Partridge, Christopher, (eds.), Religions in the Modern World: Traditions and Transformations, 2nd Edition. Oxon; New York: Routledge, pp 265-296.

Gore, Charles and Picton, John (2009) 'Denis Williams in Africa: A New Approach to its Arts and Technologies'. In: Williams, Charlotte and Williams, Evelyn, (eds.), Denis Williams, a life in works : new and collected essays. Amsterdam;New York: Rodopi, pp 153-168.

Gore, Charles (2008) 'Mami Wata, an Urban Presence: The Making of a Tradition in Benin City, Nigeria'. In: Drewal, H., (ed.), Sacred Waters: Arts for Mami Wata and Other Divinities in Africa and the Diaspora. Bloomington; Indianopolis: Indiana University Press, pp 361-382.

Gore, Charles (2007) 'Inscribing History: Leo Asemota and the Circle of (W)hole'. In: Asemota, L., (ed.), Circle of the (W)hole Catalogue. London: Eotla.

Gore, Charles (2007) 'Modernisms in Africa'. In: Contadini, Anna, (ed.), Objects of Instruction: Treasures of the School of Oriental an African Studies. London: SOAS, University of London, pp 111, 117-123.

Gore, Charles (2007) 'Conceptualising Royal, Community and Personal Shrines in the Edo Kingdom'. In: Plankensteiner, B., (ed.), Benin Kings and Rituals. Court Arts from Nigeria. Gent: Snoeck, pp 130-139.

Drewal, H. and Gore, Charles and Kisliuk, M. (2006) 'Siren Serenades: music for MamiWata and Other Water Spirits in Africa.'. In: Austern, L. P. and Naroditskaya, I., (eds.), Music of the sirens. Bloomington: Indiana University Press.

Gore, Charles (2005) 'Nigerian Museums: A Question of Value'. In: Finneran, Niall, (ed.), Safeguarding Africa's Archaeological Past: selected papers from a workshop held at the School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London, 2001. Oxford: Archaeopress.

Gore, Charles (2002) 'Traditions and Transformations in African Religions'. In: Fletcher, Paul and Kawanami, Hiroko and Smith, David and Woodhead, Linda, (eds.), Religion in the Modern World. Abingdon: Routledge, pp 204-230.

Gore, Charles (1998) 'Ritual, performance and media in urban contemporary shrine configurations in Benin City, Nigeria'. In: Hughes-Freeland, Felicia, (ed.), Ritual, performance, media. London: Rouledge, pp 66-84.

Gore, Charles (1997) 'Popular Culture in West Africa'. In: Middleton, John, (ed.), Encyclopedia of Africa south of the Sahara. New York ; London: Charles Scribner's Sons, pp 447-453.

Gore, Charles (1997) 'Mami Wata: West Africa'. In: Middleton, John, (ed.), Encyclopedia of Africa south of the Sahara. New York; London: Charles Scribner's Sons, pp 108-110.

Book Reviews

Gore, Charles (2012) 'Review of 'Osogbo and the Art of Heritage: Monuments, Deities, and Money' by Peter Probst'. Bulletin of the School of Oriental and African Studies, (75) 2, pp 431-433.

Gore, Charles (2008) 'Review of ‘Transforming Museums: Mounting Queen Victoria in a Democratic South Africa’ Steven Dubin'. Africa Today, (55) 2, pp 107-108.

Gore, Charles (2006) 'Review of 'Photography on the Color Line: W.E.B. Du Bois, Race, and Visual Culture' by Shawn Michelle Smith'. The Journal of the Royal Anthropological Institute, (12) 3, pp pp. 703-704.

Gore, Charles (2005) 'Frank Willett with Barbara Blackmun & Emma Lister: The Art of Ife: a descriptive catalogue and database. Glasgow: University of Glasgow Hunterian Museum & Art Gallery, CD-ROM'. Antiquity 79, pp 305.

Gore, Charles (2000) 'Art and Power: review of African Royal Court Art by Michèle Coquet; Jane Marie Todd'. The Journal of African History, (41) 1, pp 140-141.

Gore, Charles (2000) 'Review of ‘Religion, Health and Suffering’, (eds.) Hinnells, J.R. and Porter, R.'. Journal of the Royal Anthropological Institute, (6) 3, pp 527.

Gore, Charles (1999) 'Review of 'Dawn to Dusk: Folk Tales from Benin' by Iro Eweka'. Africa: Journal of the International African Institute, (69) 3, pp 478-479.


Gore, Charles (2013) 'Review of 'Grayson Perry: The Tomb of the Unknown Craftsmen', British Museum, London, October 2011-February 2012' African Arts, 46.

Gore, Charles (2012) 'We Face Forward: Art from West Africa Today [Exhibition]' Times Higher Education.

Gore, Charles (2006) 'Africa Remix: Contemporary Art of a Continent [Exhibition]' Journal of Museum Ethnography.


This list was last generated on Monday, 4th July 2022, 20:54 Europe/London.