Amplifying Black Narratives: Past, Present, and Future
September 28 @ 7:00 pm - 8:15 pm
Jokeda (JoJo) Bell, Tia-Simone Gardner, and Catherine Squires join moderator Cecily Marcus in a conversation about the preservation of Black art and culture in community-based archives and the University collections. Please join us for a lively conversation with experts who share a passion for keeping historical archives not only accessible, but alive.
This event is the first in the Friends of the Libraries three-part series: Amplifying Black Narratives. Mark your calendars for the following events:
- Amplifying Black Narratives: Black Publishers and Bookstores, Oct. 28, 7 p.m.
- Amplifying Black Narratives: The Creation of Black Narratives, Nov. 18, 7 p.m.
About the panelists
Jokeda “JoJo” Bell is the Executive Director and the Director of Exhibitions and Programming for the African American Interpretive Center of Minnesota (AAICM). Her roles within the organization have led to collaborative programming with state historical institutions like the Minnesota Historical Society and the Minnesota Museum of American Art. She appeared as an expert in MNHS’s 2017 documentary “Storied: African Americans in WWI.” In 2019, JoJo curated The Builders exhibition for AAICM. The show was named one of the top ten exhibitions of the year by the Star Tribune. Currently, JoJo is writing a book scheduled to be published by the Minnesota Historical Society Press in 2022.
Catherine R. Squires is Professor of Communication Studies at the University of Minnesota. She is the author of multiple books, including “Dispatches from the Color Line” (2007) and “The Post-Racial Mystique” (2014), and edited the collection “Dangerous Discourses: Feminism, Gun Violence & Civic Life” (2016). In 2017, Squires was named a Bush Fellow. Her fellowship focused on understanding intergenerational trauma, culturally relevant healing practices, embodied story sharing and gentle movement. Through these explorations she became a certified yoga instructor and has ventured into memoir writing as a practice of healing and re-connection. She lives in St. Paul with her family and is always on the lookout for interesting birds.
Tia-Simone Gardner is an interdisciplinary artist, educator, and Black feminist scholar who works primarily with drawing, still and moving-images, archives, and space. Gardner grew up in Fairfield, Alabama, where she received her BA in Art and Art History from the University of Alabama in Birmingham. In 2009 she received her MFA in Interdisciplinary Practices and Time-Based Media from the University of Pennsylvania. She participated as a Studio Fellow Whitney Independent Study Program at the Whitney Museum Of American Art and has been an invited artist at a number of national and international artist residencies including most recently the Tulsa Artist Fellowship. She has also been awarded a number of fellowships for her work including the McKnight Visual Artist Fellowship and a 2020 Smithsonian Artist Research Fellowship. Gardner currently lives in Saint Paul where she is an Assistant Professor of Media and Cultural Studies at Macalester College.
Cecily Marcus is director of collections at the Minnesota Historical Society. From 2009-2021 Marcus served as curator of the Givens Collection of African American Literature, the Performing Arts Archives, and the Upper Midwest Literary Archives. She is also the founding principal investigator of Umbra Search African American History (www.umbrsearch.org), an award winning initiative that brings together hundreds of thousands African American primary source materials from over 1,000 U.S. libraries, archives, and cultural heritage organizations. Currently, Cecily serves as chair of the advisory board for the Digital Public Library of America and as chair of the Society of American Archivists Performing Arts Section.
What: Amplifying Black Narratives: Past, Present, and Future
When: Tuesday, Sept. 28, 7-8:15 p.m. CDT
Where: Online event, please register to receive the Zoom link
The Friends Forum: A Series for Curious Minds is sponsored by the Friends of the University of Minnesota Libraries.