The Bronx Council on the Arts (BCA) and Longwood Arts Project at Hostos Community College invite you to join us for BRONX:AFRICA, a four-month celebration of Africa and the Diaspora.
The Bronx borough is home to major and still-growing populations from across Africa. This vital presence influences and transforms the city. BRONX:AFRICA will showcase the art, expressions and influences of African cultures and their impact as nationals mix and infuse.
The exhibition explores and celebrates the influence of contemporary African cultures in the Bronx and reinforces connections among the many peoples of African descent, mixed heritage and migration-dispersion that call the Bronx home.
The Curatorial Team features LeRonn Brooks, exhibition curator; Atim Annette Oton, curator of Community Engagement; and Juanita Lanzo, director of Longwood Art Project @ Hostos.
In gallery artists include Seyi Adebanjo, Laylah Amatullah Barrayn, Howard Cash, Elvira Clayton, Lisa DuBois, Nicky Enright, Janet Goldner, Ijeoma Iheanacho, Imo Imeh, Hakim Inniss, Natasha Johnson, Ahmed Tijay Mohammed, Nontsikelelo Mutiti, Ibou Ndoye, Eric Orr, Eto Otitigbe, Thurston Randall, Ibrahima Thiam, Misra Walker and Tammy Wofsey.
And online displays will feature Olaniyi Akindiya, Kenneth Anderson, Ray Felix and Osaretin Ugiagbe. There will also be a number of public activities throughout the borough that will be incorporated in to the show.
“The body of work curated reflects the dynamic changes and influences of Africans in the Bronx with echoes of their original homeland and current homeland,” says exhibition curator LeRonn Brooks, PhD, professor at Lehman College in the Bronx.
“It speaks to the intrinsic and eclectic mix of cultures that is the Bronx, but is the new vista of today’s immigrants: Africans,” according to Atim Annette Oton, the Nigerian-American designer who serves as the exhibition’s curator of community engagement.
“Like all other immigrants to this country, we come with our culture, our food, our dress/clothing, our hair, our music, our film, our language and our religion. We add to the fabric of America and it adds to us as we transform from African to American. Like all others, we become the hyphenated American in our identities – I am Nigerian-American.”
Deirdre Scott, BCA executive director, adds, “Bronx:Africa is about that mix – the intermingling and transformation of cultures especially evident in a city as dynamic as New York. Our borough is home to many immigrant cultures — this is our life – our story, and Bronx:Africa is ultimately an American story.”
The opening reception begins at 5:00 p.m. on February 3, 2016, in conjunction with the Bronx Trolley First Wednesday Arts & Culture Tour from 5:00 to 9:00 p.m. at the Longwood Art Gallery @ Hostos on the campus of Hostos Community College, 450 Grand Concourse at 149th Street in the Mott Haven section of the Bronx.
Visit bronxarts.org for information and share on Twitter with #BronxAfrica.
Admission is FREE and ALL are welcome.
2016 Programs and Events (details in development):
· Wednesday, February 3, 5:00-9:00 p.m.: Opening Reception + First Wednesday Bronx Trolley;
· Wednesday, February 17, 5:00-8:00 p.m.: Bronx:Africa Fashion event;
· Wikipedia Edit-a-Thon for Africa – Details to come!
· Wednesday, March 2, 5:00-9:00 p.m.: Meet the Artists & Curator Discussion + First Wednesday Bronx Trolley;
· Wednesday, March 16, 5:00-8:00 p.m.: Public Programming: African Spirits;
· Wednesday, March 30, 5:00-8:00 p.m.: Meet the Artists & Curator Discussion;
· Wednesday, April 6, 5:00-9:00 p.m.: Public Programming + First Wednesday Bronx Trolley;
· April: BCA Writers Center presents: Poetry Town Hall Tour – featuring Ghanaian-born poet, Rachel Ansong ;
· Wednesday, April 20, 5:00-8:00 p.m.: Panel and Demonstration;
· April 25-30 – Join us for PEN World voices Event – see BronxArts.org for details
· Wednesday, May 4, 5:00-9:00 p.m.: Closing Reception + First Wednesday Bronx Trolley.
Longwood Gallery Hours: Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday: 12:00 noon to 5:00 p.m. and by appointment.
Directions: Take Train 2, 4 or 5; Bus: BX1, BX2 or BX19; All destinations to 149th & Grand Concourse.
This exhibition is made possible with public funds from the National Endowment for the Arts; N.Y.C. Department of Cultural Affairs; NYS Council on the Arts; Lambent Foundation Fund of Tides Foundation; Lily Auchincloss Foundation Inc.; Hostos Center for the Arts & Culture; Congressman José E. Serrano; N.Y.C. Council Members Fernando Cabrera, Andrew Cohen, Melissa Mark-Viverito, James Vacca; the Bronx Delegation; and BCA members.