Risk and the Senses: Black Women in Experimental Film

A screening of experimental shorts by Black women emphasizing somatic principles of film and the body with a discussion led by Ayanna Dozier, Ja’Tovia Gary and Barbara McCullough on Thursday, April 22nd at 7PM EST.

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The senses are the leading way in which we come to know things about ourselves and the world but they are routinely sidelined as a serious methodology for reading art and film. Simultaneously, criticism on Black women in film tends to favor if not foreground representational, narrative analysis. But what of the film that exceeds representational analysis? What methods do we use for studying experimental film and the Black women who make and study this practice? With these questions in mind, Risks and the Senses mounts a film screening of several Black feminist experimental shorts, curated by Ayanna Dozier, and post-screening discussion to draw out experimental film's somatic properties to an audience. The discussion amongst filmmakers Ja'Tovia Gary and Barbara McCullough and moderated by artist-scholar Ayanna Dozier will engage with the history of Black women's uses of the senses in experimental film and the risks that are posed from these somatic engagements and experimental work.

Screen Slate Article

Risks and the Senses: Black Women in Experimental Shorts is a program of experimental shorts by Black women that draw out film and video’s ability to generate affect, the labor our body does to make sense of itself through the senses and emotions …

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Softer (2020), is part of the program for the Alchemy Film and Moving Image Festival (29 April – 3 May 2021). The screening of the film will be followed by a live Q&A with the directors on Sunday, May 2nd at 15:00 BST. Click the link the full program. An essay contextualizing the film will be made available soon.

Softer was also selected to screen as part of the On Demand slate for the Aesthetica Future Now Symposium (April 28-May 31). See the link for the full program.

Upcoming Lecture

Ayanna Dozier and Nina Cooke-John in Conversation with the McGill Peter Guo-hua Fu School of Architecture on the Cities of the Dead project premiering at the Shed in the Summer of 2021.

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S*an D Henry-Smith’s "in awe of geometry & mornings" Round Table Discussion (recording now available)

"in awe of geometry & mornings"

White Columns, with artist S*an D. Henry-Smith, is pleased to present fourth and final event in a series of online talks and readings organized on the occasion of S*an's exhibition, "in awe of geometry & mornings". For this event S*an D. Henry-Smith will be in conversation with Sasha Phyars-Burgess and Kameelah Janan Rasheed. Moderated by Ayanna Dozier.

A View of the Non-Ruins of Negro Coney Island (2021), C-Print, 16x20 inches

Cities of the Dead Opens at The Shed on 6/3

Cities of the Dead traces the imagined (re)construction of Solomon Riley’s park, dubbed “Negro Coney Island,” across an installation-arrangement of photos, 16mm film, and an architectural rendering (co-constructed with Nina Cooke John) of Riley’s destroyed park plans for Black residents in Harlem in the 1920s.

The Velvet Rope Featured on All Music Books Podcast

Steve from All Music Books Podcast invited me to talk about The Velvet Rope earlier this year. The full episode is available below.

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The Velvet Rope Receives a Second Printing!

The second run of The Velvet Rope will go into production this summer and will hit the shelves this fall. While this is great news for sales, critically, the second print/edition will rectify any typos or errors present in the first run. For anyone using this book for teaching, the second edition is the one to grab. Thank you all for your continued support for this book.

Forthcoming New Work

Image: After You (2021), polaroid

This summer I will produce a limited run of hand bound books featuring polaroids from a new body of work, How to Set a Small Building on Fire (Recollection-Images on Sexual Justice). Updates to follow; see socials to inquire for more information.

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