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The Black Archives  &  MUCE Presents

"ON THE BAN WAGON"

Finding Inspiration in Every Turn

This exhibition takes a deep dive into banned books, showcasing literary works that have significantly shaped African American history.

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Oscar Esteban Martinez, Tierra Armstrong

Exhibiting Artists | Azizi DeSouza, Ed Waffle, Godwin Ferrier, Inna Malostovker, Jesse J. Coleman Jr., Lump, Nate Dee, Nica Sweet

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Curated by Bart Mervil [MUCE]

This year-long exhibition will commence with a community reading of 

David Walker's Appeal, a compelling literary piece that fosters pride and hope within the black community. Walker's Appeal, challenging colonization, emphasizes that America belongs to all who contributed to its formation. The reading, scheduled for a theatrical performance, will feature selected parts skillfully performed by community members, creating a truly memorable experience.

Your presence and engagement would undoubtedly contribute to the success of this tribute to the literary giants who have paved the way for us.

In addition to this event, we are actively developing a series of exciting occasions throughout the year, including celebrations for Women's History Month, Pride Month, Juneteenth, Hispanic Heritage Month, Banned Book Week, Art Basel & more. Community events thrive because of volunteers like you! Click here to volunteer.

Meet The Artists
&
Explore their works

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NATE DEE

In my series of paintings and installation art, I delve into the intricate tapestry of history, focusing on the deliberate suppression and censorship of knowledge, within the realm of literature. The work is an exploration on the reoccurring phenomenon of book banning throughout American history, a practice deeply intertwined with the systematic erasure of narratives pertaining to marginalized communities, people of color, and indigenous peoples.

 

My exploration aims to unravel the layers of concealment and obscurity that shroud these narratives, shedding light on efforts employed to suppress voices and distort realities. I wish for the artworks to invite viewers to confront the unsettling truths veiled by these societal and institutional biases.

 

By exploring the theme of book banning, I hope to confront the reality of censorship as a tool of oppression, one that not only denies access to knowledge but also perpetuates the erasure of cultural identities and historical legacies. The art should be seen as a gateway for reclaiming these narratives, a counter argument to the idea that some voices can be silenced, and a warning for against a movement that has constantly repeated itself throughout history.

 

I challenge viewers to reconsider the narratives they have been presented with and encouraging them to interrogate the forces that shape our collective understanding of history and identity. It is my hope that through this exploration, we may strive towards a more inclusive and equitable society, one where the richness of diverse perspectives is celebrated rather than suppressed.

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"Wings of Hope" Series This series of artwork depicting birds resonates with the theme of banned books by symbolizing the universal yearning for freedom, hope, and the inherent resilience of ideas in the face of censorship. Through the imagery of birds in flight, these artworks evoke a sense of optimism and possibility, reminding us that even in the darkest of times, the human spirit persists, seeking liberation and enlightenment. In the struggle against censorship, these artworks serve as beacons of hope, inspiring us to uphold the fundamental right to explore diverse ideas and narratives.

INNA MALOSTOVKER