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Archive for the ‘writing’Category

The Afro Talks Back

Present Tense: The 2011 D-Crit Conference: Michele Washington, Untangling the Naps: The Afro Talks Back from D-Crit on Vimeo.

“Untangling the Naps” investigates the cultural and historical significance of the Afro, and how the afro is expressed today. I explore images of the Afro/’fro/Natural and how they were used to define blackness, racial pride, and ultimately, the black design aesthetic.

The themes for this work focus on identity, hair, blackness and power, ideas expressed in the statement by Robin D. G. Kelley, Professor of American Studies and Ethnicity at USC College.

“No matter what we might think about culture and style as a terrain of struggle, hairstyle politics, particularly in the Black community, reveal a great deal about power—the power of white over black, men over women, employer over workers, state over citizens.” — By Robin D. G. Kelley, Nap Time: Historicizing the Afro

 

My field of enquiry is based on my long-term research into the black aesthetic influence on graphic design in the twentieth century. The title, “Untangling the Naps,” suggests how I have used the Afro as a graphic narrative, in the next phase of my quest to understand the black aesthetic. In my research I investigate the historical and cultural significance of the Afro in the past, and in its current expressions. I have also researched the struggles that describe the “politics of style,” and explore the images and signifiers of the Afro/’fro/Natural that are used to define blackness, racial pride, and the new black design aesthetic of hip. My objective is to illustrate the ways this natural hairstyle has been used as a significant graphic element in the black vernacular narrative and in social media to brand black hipness.

 

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Kresge Art X event

Dr. Craig L. Wilkins from Art X Detroit on Vimeo.

Art X Detroit is pleased to present a short video by Emmy award-winning filmmaker, Stephen McGee, featuring Kresge Literary Arts Fellow, Dr. Craig L. Wilkins. This is the eleventh video in a series featuring the 2008-2010 Kresge Arts in Detroit Fellowship Awardees and Eminent Artists. Join us on our Facebook and Vimeo pages as we feature a new video each day, leading up to the opening night of Art X Detroit on April 6, 2011.

Dr. Craig L. Wilkins from Art X Detroit on Vimeo.

Art X Detroit is pleased to present a short video by Emmy award-winning filmmaker, Stephen McGee, featuring Kresge Literary Arts Fellow, Dr. Craig L. Wilkins. This is the eleventh video in a series featuring the 2008-2010 Kresge Arts in Detroit Fellowship Awardees and Eminent Artists. Join us on our Facebook and Vimeo pages as we feature a new video each day, leading up to the opening night of Art X Detroit on April 6, 2011.

The Kresge Art X event is happening in Detroit as part of the ARTX project on 09 April, at 5:30PM, held at the N’Namdi Center for Contemporary Art. Craig Wilkins, architect, educator and director of the Detroit Community Design Center is a 2010 Kresge Literary Fellow.

Wilkins is hosting panel discussion:

A Stronger Soul in a Finer Frame: The 100-year effort to create the National Museum of African American History and Culture

Dr. Craig L. Wilkins will read excerpts from his current work concerning the 100-year effort to create the National Museum of African American History and Culture (NMAAHC), set to open in 2015 on the National Mall. The outline for the event is as follows: 30 minute reading by Wilkins, a 30 minute panel discussion regarding the reading, the proposed NMAAHC and its significance in African America, American and architectural history and culture and finally, a 30 minute Q&A with the audience. The panel will discuss how the ethereal becomes manifest; the dream, a thing; in this case, architecture. It will explore not only what it means to create an architecture that might legibly and positively represent that complex experience in a country still deeply conflicted about its racial past yet optimistic enough about its future to elect it first African-American president.

The panelists are John Gallagher, architecture critic for the Detroit Free Press; Lee Bey, executive director of the Chicago Central Area Committee and former critic for the Chicago Sun-Times and; Robert Fishman, professor of architecture and planning, University of Michigan. http://sitemaker.umich.edu/clwilks/home



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19

03 2011

Black Studies in Art & Design Education Conference

Coming in March
Black Studies in Art & Design Education Conference at the The New School

March 26th-27th 2011. Two Day Conference on interdisciplinary conference on Black Studies in Art and Design Education, featuring speakers from art, fashion. architecture, urban planning, art and design history and theory. Organised by Coco Fusco and Yvonne Watkins, Parsons The New School for Design, New York. Presenters include: Craig Wilkins, University of Michigan; Mabel Wilson, Columbia University; Noel Mayo, Ohio State; Carol Tulloch, Chelsea College of Art and Design; Jennifer Gonzales, North Carolina State University; Michele Y. Washington, School of Visual Arts; Kim Piner, School of the Arts Institute of Chicago; Noliwe Rooks, Princeton University; Clyde Johnson MICA are amongst the list of designers, cultural and design critics, and educators presenters.

The conference is intended to be a forum for reflection on the troubling gap between the notable significance of Black creativity in global culture and its lack of presence in art and design education. The goal of the conference is to elaborate and assess strategies of reform that would diversify curricular offerings and thus improve education for all art and design students while simultaneously generating a more supportive environment for Black students and faculty.

Scholars and practitioners in Fine Arts, Industrial Design, Fashion Design, Architecture, Urban Planning and Art and Design History and Theory will engage in an interdisciplinary discussion about the challenges involved in rethinking  curriculum, engaging with historically disenfranchised communities, and recruiting and retaining Black students and faculty. The conference will also feature two keynote speeches by prominent members of the fields under  figures whose efforts have been central to diversifying the many fields that comprise art and design studies. Panels will address the following topics: rethinking art and design theory and history courses in light of the global influence of cultures of the African diaspora; curricular reform in practical courses of art and design; strategies of engagement with black communities; Black student experiences in art and design schools; and the specific challenges of recruiting and retaining Black students and faculty in school of art and design.

photo credit: http://www.blackstudies.ucsb.edu





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JAMES BALDWIN’S GLOBAL IMAGINATION

James Baldwin Global Imagination:

February 17 to 20, Thursday to Sunday
Contact baldwinconference@gmail.com for information

Check out their website for Conference schedule, location and other details: http://www.csgsnyu.org

Staged in the context of global economic insecurity, a planet gripped by the ravages of war and climate change, ever-increasing gaps in wealth, as well as rampant fundamentalism (East and West), “James Baldwin’s Global Imagination” is intended as an examination of globality not simply as a matter of demography but as an urgent call to re-consider the contemporary utility of Baldwin’s expansive injunction to William Faulkner (and, in fact, to us all), “[t]hat any real change implies the breakup of the world as one has always known it, the loss of all that gave one an identity, the end of safety.” These proceedings are thus proposed as an opportunity to take seriously Baldwin’s consistent and insistent proposal that categories of difference represent an early misnaming, a dangerous and cowardly misrecognition of the moral imagination required to confront not only our mortality but also the brutal legacies of our collective histories.

Confirmed plenary speakers, respondents, and musicians:
M. Jacqui Alexander, University of Toronto
Awam Amkpa, New York University
Eshter Armah, journalist, playwright
Rich Blint, New York University
Marcellus Blount, Columbia University
Nicholas Boggs, Columbia University
Herb Boyd, Baldwin Biographer
Jennifer Brody, Duke University






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18

01 2011

DESIGN: Laurie Lyon’s Online NOMADS Magazine Drops

Lauri Lyons, a well-known documentary photographer has a new online publication, Nomads Magazine it’s a quarterly devoted entirely to global travel aimed at exposing its readers to many exciting cultural experiences that promises to take you around the globe. This magazine is guaranteed to be filled with adventuresome features stories and extraordinary black and white or color images by world renowned artists and journalists, who live their life on the run. Lauri also writes about culture and photography for the Huffington Post and this December she’s leading a NOMAD Photography Workshop in Salvador de Bahia.

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This Week’s Buzz: BOOKENDS IN BROOKLYN

I could not resist this opportunity to share one of my favorite places Brooklyn. If you’re not busy this  weekend stop by The Brooklyn Book Festival, this free public event presenting an array of literary stars and emerging authors who represent the exciting world of literature today. One of America’s premier literary and literacy events, this hip, smart, diverse gathering attracts thousands of book lovers of all ages. I’m working this Sunday with Ramin Ganeshram, chef/food writer, make sure to stop by her table and say hello. For more information check out: http://www.brooklynbookfestival.org/







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07

09 2010

Spare Beats: Happenings Around Town

This spring there are a lot of events occurring around NYC with film, visual art, design, food and more. Here is a breakdown of the ones that I’ve been able to find, and some are all free! Please leave a comment if I’ve left anything out.

Social Dramas and Shimmering Spectacles: Muslim Cultures of Bombay Cinema
May 19 to 27

Celebrate and explore the rich influence of Muslim cultural and social traditions on the cinema of Bombay at Lincoln Center. http://www.filmlinc.com/wrt/onsale/bombay.html

Chaudhvin Ka Chand
M. Sadiq, 1960, India; 169m
Fiza
Khalid Mohamed, 2000, India; 170m
Garm Hawa
M. S. Sathyu, 1973, India; 146m
Jodhaa Akbar
Ashutosh Gowariker, 2008, India; 213m
Mammo
Shyam Benegal, 1994, India; 124m

May 21st and 22nd – Costume Collections: A Collaborative Model for Museums
The Brooklyn Museum and the Costume Institute are hosting a 2-day symposium about their new costume collaboration. I’m looking forward to seeing both exhibitions this spring!

Fredrick Levore at University of the Streets
We hope you can play your part in the audience and enjoy an incredible evening of live music featuring: Michael Feinberg on bass, Daniel Platzman, drums Richard Louie, piano Alex Pope Norris, brass Emily Greene and Tatiana Kochkareva vocals.
Saturday, June 5, 2010 at 7PM-11:30PM; located at 130 East 7th Street (Avenue A) New York City.

COLLABORATION: 
KARIN FONG OF IMAGINARY FORCES
THURSDAY 17 JUNE 2010 6:30–8:00PM

Join Karin Fong, founding member of Imaginary Forces and renown title designer, as she discusses the collaborative nature of designing cinematic experiences in its many roles.
As director and designer for a wide range of projects, spanning the worlds of fashion, entertainment, advertising, live-action direction, video games, experience design and environmental installations, Karin’s work carries a unique stamp whether it features the Marines or stop motion claymation figures.
AIGA/NY event

Black Brooklyn Renaissance: Black Arts and Culture, 1960–2010. The summer season gives ample evidence of the renaissance at work: the Black Brooklyn Drum Call, a concert featuring Toshi Reagon, an exhibition featuring the work of six Black Brooklyn photographers, the Brooklyn Hip-Hop Festival along the Dumbo waterfront, the annual Tribute to Our Ancestors of The Middle Passage in Coney Island and so much more. summer event calendar

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