NURFC “Resistance” Exhibition Programming

Last month I reviewed the Freedom Center’s Let Your Motto Be Resistance. My review expressed some concern over the exhibition’s lack of any definitive notion of resistance and what it really looks like. Instead, the photos look more to me as glamor shots of those who successfully resisted against racism. As such, I suggested the Freedom Center would have to accompany the exhibition with well thought out programming in order to teach contemporary audiences about resistance. I still maintain the photos do not provide an honest image of the history of resistance. Though I do hope the following programs will encourage an honest dialogue about resistance and a recognition of a privileged class we still see today:

Exhibition Programming:
A Question of Color, March 26, 2011 at 1 p.m.

A Question of Color is the first documentary to confront a painful and long taboo subject: the disturbing feelings many African Americans harbor about themselves and their appearance. African American filmmaker Kathe Sandler digs into the often subconscious world of “color consciousness,” a caste system based on how closely skin color, hair texture and facial features conform to a European ideal.
Mahalia Jackson: The Power and the Glory- the Life and Music of the World’s Greatest Gospel Singer, May 21, 2011 at 1 p.m.

With uplifting and soul-stirring music at its core, this film captivates audiences with the stylings of the legendary Mahalia Jackson. One of the best loved gospel and jazz vocal artists of all time Ms. Jackson’s portrait is featured in the Let Your Motto Be Resistance catalogue and will be explored through the presentation of this film.

Let Your Motto Be Resistance: The Exhibition and Resistance Leaders, May 28, 2011 at 1 p.m.

Freedom Center curator, Dina Bailey, will take participants through the Let Your Motto Be Resistance exhibition, providing a close examination of featured examples of African American cultural expressionism throughout American history.
“Photographing History,” June 11, 2011 at 1 p.m.

This workshop will examine some of the most famous historical photographs and consider their impact on our understanding of history, including the idea that photographs that document memories can be seared in our common memories and help us understand the situations which they document.
Deborah Willis, June 18, 2011 at 2 p.m.

The final Let Your Motto Be Resistance program is with exhibition curator and winner of the 2000 MacArthur Fellowship, Dr. Deborah Willis. Dr. Willis brings an intimate knowledge of the people and stories profiled in this exhibition and will be able to bring the photographs to life with her deep understanding of their relationship to one another, to African American history and the Freedom Center.

Please check out the Freedom Center for more information about their current exhibitions and programming.

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