Weusi! Tutashinda bila shaka

Curator's Notes:

This exhibition is inspired by The East, better known now as the International Festival of the Arts, held yearly each July in Brooklyn, NY. The festival is a cultural institution that embraces and promotes Afrocentric and Pan-African sensibilities and makes space for all kinds of Blackness. For me, it epitomizes the ways Afrocentricity and Pan-Africanism were central to the politics and culture Umi raised me in. As I went through Umi’s archive, I found that while there were some hints of this in her own upbringing, the times she was raised in were quite different;, making her choices around Black identity, reflective of her generation, even more compelling. Accordingly, the items in this exhibition mark the shifts in Black social worlds from the 1950s through the 1970s, through Umi’s move from bobby socks to Black Power.

Cover from Umi’s diary from the early 1960s.
  • Black Girlhood
  • 1950s - 1960s
Photo of Umi and her graduating class from junior high school.
  • Integration
  • 1950s - 1970s
Umi in the role of Felicity in The Blacks in 1969.
  • Black Arts
  • 1950s - 1970s
Afrocentric greeting card sent by Umi in the 1970s.
  • Afrocentricity
  • 1960s - 1980s
  • Livestream
  • The 4th exhibition launched with a livestream conversation between curator Su'ad Abdul Khabeer and Jasmine Johnson, an Assistant Professor of Africana Studies at the University of Pennsylvania.

  • Performance
  • 2021
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