American poet, storyteller and activist Maya Angelou was Hollywood’s first female black director and a fearless civil rights activist who worked for Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and Malcolm X. Angelou published this extraordinary poem ‘A Brave and Startling Truth’ in 1995 – a striking insight into the fascinating ways in which science and poetry influence and inspire each other.
A trove from the company of legendary dancer and choreographer Anne Teresa De Keersmaeker, this site hosts streams of production films, screen adaptations and documentaries. Highlights include a 1983 documentary about the making of breakthrough dancer Rosas Danst Rosas, the 1990 film adaptation of Achterland
and a 1991 duet with Boris Charmatz. Sadlers Wells Digital Stage
also presents footage of De Keersmaeker’s seminal work Rain
from 10 – 17 April. Drawing on the minimalist compositions of Steve Reich, Rain
typifies the choreographer’s practice – a prolific exploration of the relationship between music and dance.
The UK premiere of filmmaker Leilah Weintraub’s Shakedown
, about the Los Angeles black lesbian strip club of the same name, happened two years ago at the ICA. For those who missed it, you can now watch it online at Pornhub and also read last week’s New York Times
interview with Leilah here
In this recorded talk at the ICA, poet and essayist Momtaza Mehri examines black womxn’s adoration for cultural and political juggernauts like Beyoncé, Michelle Obama and Oprah. Mehri critiques the limitations of these ‘feminist fantasies’, pointing instead to figures such as Ella Baker, Claudia Jones and collectives like the Organisation of Women of Asian and African Descent. Part of The Politics of Pleasure
series of Black feminist programmes, the talk is followed by a Q&A with ICA Assistant Curator Ifeanyi Awachie.
This 17-minute sound piece is a new release by Christelle Oyiri aka Crystallmess, created as an homage to her ancestors. Using field recordings, synths, her voice and samples she collected during her stay in Guadeloupe, her mother’s native island. Oyiri describes it as an ode to hauntology where Ancestors become benevolent ghosts, invited to live in the present. I suggest listening with headphones.
The European Cultural Fund just launched the Culture of Solidarity Fund for Individuals, Collectives and Organisations to propose projects promoting solidarity across Europe. It is open for applications now with a deadline of Monday 27 April 2020, 12:00 CET.
Track of the Day
Harmony and understanding,
Sympathy and trust abounding,
No more falsehoods or derisions,
Golden living dreams of visions,
Mystic crystal revelation,
And the mind’s true liberation,