Posts tagged afrofuturism
Posts tagged afrofuturism
"In early 1971 Sun Ra was artist-in-residence at University of California, Berkeley, teaching a course called "The Black Man In the Cosmos". Rather few students enrolled but the classes were often full of curious persons from the surrounding community. One half-hour of each class was devoted to a lecture (complete with handouts and homework assignments), the other half-hour to an Arkestra performance or Sun Ra keyboard solo. Reading lists included the works of Madame Blavatsky and Henry Dumas, the Book of the Dead, Alexander Hislop’s The Two Babylons, The Book of Oahspe and assorted volumes concerning Egyptian hieroglyphs, African American folklore, and other topics."
Um, I would really like to take this course, please?
There is less than a week to support Consumption, a short film by Philadelphia filmmaker, Brittany Rafalak. The project is a near-futuristic short film about a society where food has been outlawed. The main character, Corinne, discovers food and grapples with the feeling of hunger in a world where it is considered barbaric to satiate oneself by eating. Consumption will be accompanied by a live, improvised musical score.
Presented with community partners ReelBlack and Vivant Art Collection
What does the future look like for Black movies and media? How will the stories we tell today impact our culture? What methods will be used to distribute those stories? How does ‘Afrofuturism’ contribute to shaping ideas, beyond oppression? With 7 slavery themed movies released in 2013, to commemorate the 150th Anniversary of the Civil War, this conversation focused on exploring the role of history through a futuristic lens.
Rasheedah Phillips is an attorney and the creator of the AfroFuturist Affair, a community formed to celebrate, strengthen, and promote Afrofuturistic culture. She is the author of several published science fiction works and essays. She is currently completing her first speculative fiction novel, Recurrence Plot.
Yumy Odom is an award-winning educator, BlogTalkRadio host and Founder of The East Coast Black Age of Comics Convention (ECBACC, Inc.) which focuses on sharing new ideas and technologies, combating illiteracy, creating ennobling images of Black superheroes / super-powered characters and promoting professionalism in the comic book industry. Mr. Odom’s latest work is a 250-page web document (2010) entitled “A Public Resource & Guide to the Epic Myth Continuum” that outlines and contextualizes 10,000 years of ancient, modern and neo-mythology.
Ph.D. candidate in Mythological Studies and Depth Psychology at Pacifica Graduate Institute, Sumpter’s research applies archetypal, aesthetic and quantum theories toward understanding humankind’s existential condition in the 21st century. She believes our future trajectory through the multi-verse is fundamentally shaped by collective participation in a mythic paradigm that supports a corresponding reality. In her dissertation, Apocalyptic Soul: Seeing through Image in the Age of End Time Sumpter examines the impact of apocalyptic art and media on psyche and the phenomenological world.
Mr. Jones is a writer and director of stage and film, and a musician and composer who has performed throughout the United States and Europe. Mr. Jones co -wrote, dramaturgy, and performed in the Bessie Award winning, Olivier award nominated Rome and Jewels for Rennie Harris Pure Movement. Mr. Jones has directed or performed with Patti Labelle, Ruby Dee, Ntozake Shange, Sonja Sanchez, Jill Scott, Guy Davis, The Roots, Wu Tang Clan, Schooly D, Public Enemy, Poor Righteous Teachers, to name a few. Mr. Jones developed and directed staged readings of his new plays, Chasin’ the Bird at Penumbra Theater and an African Continuum production of Kind of Blue at Arena Stage in DC, both of these new works are a part of a larger series of plays on Jazz called, The Real Book.
Caroliese Frink Reed
Caroliese is a doctoral candidate, educator, storyteller and librarian who has done extensive research on traditional and contemporary storytelling and the timelessness of African oral traditions. She has performed at libraries, schools and festivals across the United States, South America and South Africa. She is a co-editor of Sayin’ Something’:Stories from the National Association of Black Storytellers, Inc. and is a founding member of Keepers of the Culture, Inc, Philadelphia’s oldest storytelling organization.
Afronnauts by Frances Bodomo
teaser trailer from the film
Open Call for Creators: Time Travel Convention and Recurrence Plot Release
In collaboration with Metropolarity.net, this interactive exhibition explores time travel as a practical activity – something that does not require a machine, an advanced degree, or other privileges. Using afrofuturism and science fiction as lenses, the exhibition will revolve around time travelling with everyday tools such as memory, dreams, imagination, manipulation of language and perception, light, and music.
Inviting submissions from the public of all ages, the installation will feature personal time machines and time travel devices created by submitting creators. Leading up to the exhibition, we will host a workshop on March 23, 2014 at Yell Gallery with materials and an interactive lecture component, where people can discuss ideas for alternative methods of time travel. The workshop will feature the “quantum time capsule”, where attendees can be part of the creation of a live installation at the Convention. We will also disseminate a curriculum for use in classrooms and afterschool programs for teachers to work with students to make work for the Convention.
The Time Travel Convention opening reception will also be the premiere of AfroFuturist Affair creator R.Phillip’s experimental book of short time travel tales called Recurrence Plot and her Sun Return celebration. The reception will feature readings by Metropolarity and a few other guest authors.
Seeking submissions of small installations, film, audio/video, literature, photography, objects, and art pieces dealing with time travel, such as personal time machines and devices and time travel artifacts. Works can be individual or collaborative, and should be experimental. Proposals should include a description of your project or piece, including dimensions, sizes, number, and other specifications. Please identify any audio/visual and electrical needs. Also include artist information and website if available.
Please submit a proposal for your submission to firstname.lastname@example.org by February 20 2014. The Time Travel Convention opening reception will take place at Yell Gallery in Philadelphia on April 5, 2014. For more information please email@example.com
Philadelphia filmmaker, Brittany Rafalak, is raising funds for a short film.
Consumption is about Corinne, who grapples with the feeling of hunger in a world where it is considered barbaric to satiate oneself by eating. The setting is a near-futuristic society where food has been outlawed.
Consumption will be filmed in Mt. Airy and surrounding areas. It will feature local actors and filmmakers as cast and crew. The film will also be screened in Philadelphia, accompanied by a live, improvised musical score. Rafalak says, “The purpose of the live score is to explore the relationship between music and film. Movie scores have a tendency to guide audiences and tell us what to feel. In this case, musicians will be inspired by on-screen images, and for the audience, the film and music will be manifested simultaneously.” The live band will be a jazz-influenced quintet.
Rafalak’s fundraising goal is $7600.00. The money will be spent on service fees from storyboarding to sound mastering. Other costs include paying for equipment rental, props, and location fees. The Indiegogo campaign offers creative perks including professional music lessons and filmmaking/crowd funding insights. To contribute to the fundraiser, click on the link below.
To learn about the film’s progress you can visit www.brittanyrafalak.com and navigate to “Work in Progress.” You can also access Consumption on other social media platforms such as Instagram (consumptionfilm) and Pinterest (Consumption…a Film).
Space may have been the place for jazz visionary Sun Ra, but there is another location that has often been excluded from discussions of Afrofuturism: the ocean. From the mythic, underwater world of Drexciya, to the music of Azealia Banks and the artwork of Ellen Gallagher, the ocean has flooded several modes of black cultural expression. Join the Studio Museum for a trans-disciplinary dialogue that conceptualizes “black aquatic space” as it relates to the global production of black science fictions across film, theory, literature, music and contemporary art.
Organized by Jared Richardson, PhD candidate in Art History at Northwestern University, this discussion features Alexander G. Weheliye, Professor of English and African American Studies at Northwestern University.
Feb 6, 2014 7:00 PM - 9:00 PM
Photo: The Otolith Group (Kodwo Eshun and Anjalika Sagar) | Hydra Decapita (video still), 2010 | Courtesy the artists and Lux UK
Afrofuturism is a cultural aesthetic that uses the visual language and narrative strategies of sci-fi and fantasy as lenses for gaining fresh insights into black experiences. Afrofuturist creations may be political, fictional, or abstract and take many forms, from books and comics to blogs, music, performance, graphics, and visual art. Afrofuturism is also a forum in which these insights and creations are brought to bear on our collective envisioning of the future.
Afrotechtopia starts with Afrofuturism and probes into the adjoining dimensions of Afrosurrealism and the Ethno-gothic. Afrotechtopia includes artists who use the languages of technology and mythology to rewind the past and set the future spinning.
Afrofuturism and Beyond: Panel Discussion
February 5, 6:00pm Samek Gallery
This panel considers Afrofuturism, a vibrant genre of science fiction represented in art, literature, film, and music in conjunction with our special exhibition, “Afrotechtopia.” Panelists include Dawn Lundy Martin of the University of Pittsburgh, Delinda Collier of the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, artist and curator Ingrid LaFleur, and Nikki Young of Bucknell as moderator. A reception follows the talk.
Afrotechtopia Book Club: The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao
March 4, 6:30pm, Samek Gallery
Join us in our Samek Gallery reading room for a discussion of Junot Díaz’s Pulitzer Prize-winning novel, The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao, which chronicles the life of self-described “Ghetto Nerd” Oscar as he deals with the effects of an intergenerational family curse. Refreshments will be provided.
An AfroFuturist Affair Gala
March 20, 8-11pm, Samek Gallery
This unique celebration of black Sci-fi with live music from DJ King Britt, as well as a host of other luminaries from the worlds of performance, music, fashion, and art is not to be missed! Join us for dancing and fun in the galleries.
For more information, visit: http://galleries.blogs.bucknell.edu/2014/01/21/afrotechtopia/
In a future Serengeti, illegal poaching continues to deplete the wildlife population, but conservationists have extraordinary new tools to protect endangered animals: robots that take the forms of those animals to blend in with the wildlife and capture poachers.
Artist Robert Chews Big Five series of illustrations imagine a network of wildlife rangers and the animal inspired robots they use in an attempt to make poaching a thing of the past. (Although one illustration reveals that the poachers have fearsome robots of their own.) He frequently adds companion drawings showing off the features of his robots, and usually includes short blurbs about the roles of the robots, including this one about the White-Back Vulture robots:
Vultures patrol protection zones providing aerial recon and basic first aid capabilities. Their main job is to locate recently poached animals and mark them for investigation. If anti-poaching units are in the area the Vulture can land near the corpse of the animal and protect the body from consumption by other animals. Compartments in the wings and the chest area house basic first aid supplies to aid in field operations. These include bandages, tourniquets, antivenom, antiseptics, resuscitators, field rations, and water among other things. Another function is to transport DNA samples of poached animals quickly and efficiently for analysis to help keep records up to date about the remaining animal populations.Vultures also serve as locators for tagged ivory and rhino horn. By locating signals from planted GPS units Vultures can help anti-poaching units and law enforcement locate the contraband and hopefully the poachers as well.
Overall the Vulture units serve as aerial watchdogs as well as CSI. Though they are non-combatant’s their auxiliary functions aid greatly in field operations.
Machines (as Norbert Weiner said) are an extension of their inventor-creators. That is not simple once you think. Machines, the entire technology of the West, is just that, the technology of the West.
Nothing has to look or function the way it does. The West man’s freedom, unscientifically got at the expense of the rest of the world’s people, has allowed him to xpand his mind–spread his sensibility wherever it cdgo, & so shaped the world, & its powerful artifact-engines.
Political power is also the power to create–not only what you will–but to be freed to go where ever you can go–(mentally physically as well). Black creation–creation powered by the Black ethos brings very special results,
Think of yourself, Black creator, freed of european restraint which first means the restraint of self determined mind development. Think what would be the results of the unfettered blood inventor-creator with the resources of a nation behind him. To imagine–to think–to construct–to energize!!!
How do you communicate with the great masses of Black people? How do you use the earth to feed masses of people? How do you cure illness? How do you prevent illness? What are the Black purposes of space travel?
It staggers the mind. To be free go let the mind do what it will as constructive progress force, availed of the total knowledge resource energy of a nation.
These white scientists on lifetime fellowships, or pondering problems at Princeton’s Institute For Advanced Study.
So that a telephone is one culture’s solution to the problem of sending words through space. It is political power that has allowed this technology to emerge, & seem the sole direction for the result desired.
A typewriter?–why shd it only make use of the tips of the fingers as contact points of flowing multi directional creativity. If I invented a word placing machine, an “expression-scriber,” if you will, then I would have a kind of instrument into which I could step & sit or sprawl or hang & use not only my fingers to make words express feelings but elbows, feet, head, behind, and all the sounds I wanted, screams, grunts, taps, itches, I’d have magnetically recorded, at the same time, & translated into word–or perhaps even the final xpressed thought/feeling wd not be merely word or sheet, but itself, the xpression, three dimensional–able to be touched, or tasted or felt, or entered, or heard or carried like a speaking singing constantly communicating charm. A typewriter is corny!!
The so called fine artist realizes, those of us who have freed ourselves, that our creations need not emulate the white man’s, but it is time the engineers, architects, chemists, electronics craftsmen, ie film too, radio, sound, &c., that learning western technology must not be the end of our understanding of the particular discipline we’re involved in. Most of that west shaped information is like mud and sand when you’re panning for gold!
The actual beginnings of our expression are post Western (just as they certainly are pre-western). It is only necessary that we arm ourselves with complete self knowledge the whole technology (which is after all just expression of who ever) will change to reflect the essence of a freed people. Freed of an oppressor, but also as Touré has reminded we must be “free from the oppressor’s spirit,” as well. It is this spirit as emotional construct that can manifest as expression as art or technology or any form.
But what is our spirit, what will it project? What machines will it produce? What will they achieve? What will be their morality? Check the different morality of the Chinese birthday celebration firecracker & the white boy’s bomb. Machines have the morality of their inventors.
See everything fresh and “without form”–then make forms that will express us truthfully and totally and by this certainly free us eventually.
The new technology must be spiritually oriented because it must aspire to raise man’s spirituality and expand man’s consciousness. It must begin by being “humanistic” though the white boy has yet to achieve this. Witness a technology that kills both plants & animals, poisons the air & degenerates or enslaves man.
The technology itself must represent human striving. It must represent at each point the temporary perfection of the evolutional man. And be obsolete only because nothing is ever perfect, the only constant is change.
Amistad 2, 1970
(thanks to Nettrice Gaskins for putting us on)
Metropolarity recaps the Black Tribbles x AfroFuturist Affair x Stepping Into Tommorrow’s Return to Octavia City, an Octavia Butler-inspired, original afrofuturistic/black scifi radio reading event where awesomeness abounds. Check out the recap on the revamped mobile technology friendly website Metropolarity.net.
As we prepare to refresh resolutions from last year that we never got around to, craft some new goals, and fill in our calendar for ‘14, AfroFuturist Affair wants to take the time out for a retrospective afrofuture review of our projects and activities over this past rotation ‘round the sun. Thank you to everyone who continues to support our journey and inspire us to keep it revolving and evolving.
Moderated *GRIOTWORKS Presents: ‘Afrofuturism’: Exploring the Future of Black Media, Myth and Culture* panel @ Vivant Art Gallery
GALAXY HIGH SPECULATIVE FICTION HOUSE PARTY and Metropolarity Benefit @ AfroFuturist Affair’s House of Future Sciences
Featured reader at Spring Laser Life West Philly Queer Empowered Sci-Fi Reading @ A-Space Anarchist Community Center. See videos from past Laser Life gatherings here.
THE BLACK TRIBBLES PRESENTS: OCTAVIA CITY - The Black Tribbles joined with Gabriel Bryant of G-town Radio’s Stepping Into Tomorrow and Rasheedah Phillips of the AfroFuturist Affair to present original tales of afrofuturism from some of the genre’s upcoming and brightest stars. Part One and Part Two of the first Octavia City event
Featured in Gemly’s Portal Sci-Fi Magic Art Show, a multigenerational art show of portals, alternate reality, and magic put on by the UCAL youth scifi magic art class, with photography from the “Lost in Time” photo series by D1L0 by Adrian Jackson , The L.Park Project, and feyasterling inc.
Community Partner for Philly Premiere of AfroPunk’s “Triptych” Film Screenig at Philadelphia Museum of Art and Moor Mother Goddess Presents Mama’s Gun Official Afterparty
Quantum Time Capsule Workshop @ Day 3 of Rockers BBQ Weekend w/ readings by Metropolarity.net and the release of SE01:EP02 Space Invaders Issue (Gentrification x Community)
Science is Fiction! Using Sci-fi & Afrofuturism to Time Travel workshop @ Girls Rock Philly! Summer Rock Camp
Speech on intersectionality of sexual assault, race, and gender, at Slutwalk DC!
Featured guest on Genesis Science Fiction Radio, a program of Black Science Fiction Society, w/ hosts Jarvis Sheffield, Penelope Flynn, and William Hayashi discussing relevant topics in science fiction from a black perspective
The Peace House Creative Space & Rockers Closet present "A Different World" Dance Party/Fashion Show in Celebration of Philly Fashion Week 2013, with afrofuturist-inspired stylings by The AfroFuturist Affair and Rockers Closet. Body art by Omi Urban Gypsy. More photos + behind the scenes here.
Featured reader at Fall Laser Life West Philly Queer Empowered Sci-Fi Reading @ A-Space Anarchist Community Center. See videos from past Laser Life gatherings here.
Sponsor of Philadelphia Printworks Fall Launch Party @ AfroFuturist Affair’s House of Future Sciences
Interview on Nobantu Project - AFROFUTURISM, Agent of Change & Annual Charity & Costume Ball - Philadelphia public interest attorney, author, and Creative Director of AfroFuturist Affair Rasheedah Phillips speaks about the organization’s upcoming Annual Charity & Costume Ball and Afrofuturism as a medium for social commentary
Excerpts from an interview published in Afrofuturism - The World of Black Sci Fi and Fantasy Culture by Ytasha Womack
Featured reader at Philly Zine Fest w/ Metropolarity.net crew @ The Rotunda
Reading with Metropolarity.net @ Punks Against Racism Show
Shadows Took Shape Book Club Discussion featuring “Kindred” by Octavia Butler at Studio Museum in Harlem w/ Illustrator and Professor John Jennings - R.Phillips presents on Time, Memory, and Agency | Photo and mini-review by Invisible Universe Documentary www.maslidukan.com/kindred-discussion
Women in Sci-Fi and Afrofuturism workshop at Girls Rock Philly! Ladies Rock Camp
Community partner @ Leeway Foundation Presents Emergent Strategies: Speculative Fiction & Radical Organizing w/ Octavia’s Brood Adrienne Maree Brown - a lively conversation and writing workshop inspired by the work of visionary, post-apocalyptic, science-fiction author Octavia Butler
For more information on The AfroFuturist Affair Futurist Fund grant, collaborations, projects, readings, workshops, booking, and upcoming events, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Futurism when it developed in the early 1900s was about disavowing anything of the past. I feel that it’s a bit of a contradiction in terms to talk about “Afro-Futurism … if you’re into Futurism … because Afro-Futurism is absolutely rooted in the past, in race, in the use of Futurist thought and process to transcend and manipulate the facts of race in a “trickster” way, the art of dissembling and coding, and that has been part of the African Diaspora since the first abduction. It references the past in futuristic ways. - Ytasha Womack
In the last decades of the twentieth century marginalized voices have moved more towards the center of an anti-anti utopian, post-postmodern stage. Afro-futurism, like hip-hop, is a cultural aesthetic and sociohistorical genre that includes science fiction and technology. It offers a totalizing look at the “impact of the various institutions that govern behavior and transmission of knowledge.” To create conceptual maps of this largely unexplored psychogeographyart pioneers like RammellZee , Jean-Michel Basquiat, Futura (formerly Futura 2000), Doze Green and others have provided a variety of artistic guideposts through their street-level, urban texts, images and performances from cyberculture. The increasing ubiquity of computing, communication and information technology tools offer opportunities to deviate from canonical forms of art and represent a “complex syntheses, biological andmnemotechnical apparatuses of bodily functions.”