Friday, September 09, 2016

At New Museum, a Pop-Up Support System for Black Lives Matter

The New York Times, Tamara Best
September 2, 2016

"In the New Museum’s lobby on Thursday night, a circle of women, all dressed in red, swayed from side to side, clapping as they chanted a simple call and response: “End the war on black people,” followed by “It’s time.”

As the refrain continued, onlookers became participants.

The event, presented by Black Women Artists for Black Lives Matter, served as a balm at a time when the country is confronting painful questions about racial bias and police practices. The organizers said the aim was to provide a template for fellow artists looking for their own ways to respond and inspire others.

Mario Moore, who explained that he had attended out of curiosity, said he was struck by “the women in red singing a song.” He added, “There’s something about the presence of black people in this static space that feels like a family reunion.”

In a roundabout way, the event was a sort of extension of Simone Leigh’s summer residency and exhibition, “Simone Leigh: The Waiting Room,” at the museum. Her show, continuing through Sept. 18, explores and expands concepts of medicine and self-care."

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