What’s next for the AGO?

New guy as Chef Curator for the AGO.  Handsome, yes.  But what caught my ear was his interest in the Civil Rights Movement (King, Jr., Baldwin).  How will that translate in exhibitions?  And do we want it to?  Don’t get me wrong – I want to see more work of artists of colour (all colour).  But as much as I would like to see the works of artists of African decent  like Thelma Johnson Streat, I don’t want it to be from only an American lens,

The ROM is still playing up from the Out of Africa fiasco.  I am looking forward to seeing the work of artist Michèle Pearson Clarke on display until April. Michèle  asks questions  about what narrative Black artists are supposed to cover.

I have a question too: is the AGO supposed to throw Basquiat at the visitors and say, “There, now we are covered”? Ultimately we can to better than this.

Credit to ourselves

Someone on The View asked the question, “What next?”  This was in regard to the action by many women at the Golden Globes last Sunday. This includes refusing to give into the “what are you wearing” talk (which, to be fair, was initiated by Joan Rivers years ago).

More importantly this included introducing us the public to the activists in women’s movements in other areas, such as Tarana Burke, Saru Jayaraman, Ai-Jen Poo and Marai Larasi and others. (come on, US Weekly, did you have to follow that story with click bait on 10 Best Beauty Looks on the Golden Globes? Really?)

So what next?  I think I already answered that question in my post about Lisa Nishimura.  We need to acknowledge the work of these women.  This is a slow trend but it is happening.

Clearly we as women know how to make the money to make films (Lisa Nishimura) and we know how to market films (that’s what Ava DuVernay was doing before Selma). And we know how to write books that get optioned, as Hidden Figures proved.  A book written by a Black woman made into a film starring Black women.  And guess what?  White men went to see it, too.

It can be done.

The next step?  We KNOW we have been oppressed but we have to stand by our work.  I don’t care about the designer dress you borrowed.  I want to know about your upcoming television and Netflix projects (Hollywood? Feh).

Because only you can best promote you.

 

 

 

Black Women in Alabama – 2017 in review

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#bwia with Doug Jones

2017 was a hard year for everyone:  ailing elderly parents, issues with our children and/or partners, problems in work or finding it, or coming down with sometimes  illness as serious as cancer (shoutout to B).

As I have repeated time and time again: #bwia #BlackwomeninAlabama. If they could move forward in adversity, anyone can.

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Monica Bodirsky, Kristine Maitland, Rev. Terrie Brookins, Rosemary Stehlik

But the only way we can get through it is to turn to our communities (often we have more than one).  I want to take this time, perhaps again, to thank friends, old (Bridge, SCA, BiWoT, WCC, et. al.) and new, for all the help they gave me during the crisis with my mother last May, among other things.

Also, thanks to my new friends, from Women’s Drumming Circle to the #broomwomen, for introducing me to a new way of looking at my life, from the participating in the arts to the moontimes.

2017 has been a time for me make decisions as to how I will move forward as I look up closer to fifty.  Things are looking good.

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Women’s Drumming Circle lead by Veronica Johnny.

A look at the film and TV Industry

I found this Entertainment Weekly post on women and sexism in the film and TV industry.  Eva – make that Civil War Movie!

I have said it before: I have long held that it is time for women to say to hell with Hollywood and look at other avenues to tell stories.  Hollywood is dying a death in double time. Netflix and HBO is where it’s at.  As Snagglepuss used to say.

 

Nina Simone on Shock value

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Nina Simone in repose.

There’s been a lot of hoo-haa about the upcoming bio-pic and the black face used on Zoe Zeldana, the actor playing her.

I have two things to say on the matter.

One: Zoe needs to fire her management team.  The minute they were aware of the makeup job required to do the gig, her team should have told her to walk.  Even Ms. Simone would have told her that you have to control your own image.  Let the community have their say, ignore the Twitter feed,  and move on. Remember, you can be replaced.

Second.  I hate bio-pics.  As it is, the hoo-haa about the lack of representation of Black people at the 2016 Oscars meant that no one noted the documentary about Ms. Simone that was up for an Academy award.  Jada Pinkett-Smith did not bother to mention that.

As far as I am concerned, morbid as it sounds,  let the dead get the opportunity to speak for themselves.

Muhammed Ali, d. June 3rd 2016

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I’m still trying to figure out where I’m going and I am not bold enough the state that I know what the truth is.  But I am brash enough to state outright that I am correct most of the time. Why? Because as Ali also said:

The man who views the world at 50
the same as he did at 20
has wasted 30 years of his life.

I have spent the past 26 years (I’m not 50 just yet) reflecting on the world and its ills.  I disagree with Muhammed Ali on one point: none of us are free to be what we want.  Nor should we be. What we should be is free FROM want. But that is not going to happen any time soon, so long as we want more than what we actually need.

You don’t have to agree with me. And I sure as heck am not going to be what anyone wants me to be.

I have better things to do with my time.

TPS Jazz or getting out of my musical rut

Got caught up in one of those FB games where you list 12 albums that made a lasting impression on you, but only 1 per band/artist. My friend Chad, who knows his stuff about music, had an interesting list with musicians I did not know.

One was John Zorn: Spy vs. Spy: The Music of Ornette Coleman.

I didn’t like John Zorn but I am intrigued by Ornette Coleman, a sax player who died last year at 85 years of age. Though Coleman I became aware that I am in a music rut.  It is time to educate myself on sounds new to me.

Groovy.