Photographer Zanele Muholi

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I first met photographer and visual activist Zanele a couple of years ago while attending a Black Portraitures conference in South Africa. Thanks Deb Willis!

Now, in 2018, seeing Zanele’s large scale black black black (yes 3 blacks) and white self portraits hang in exhibition at the Spelman College Museum of Fine Art is breath taking — beautiful and painful. The exhibition titled Somnyama Ngonyama, Hail the Dark Lioness carries questions, commentary, observations, analysis, deep pain and a deeper love for self.

If you are unfamiliar with Zanele’s work, yes you can go online and learn more about her but I suggest picking up a copy of her recently released long awaited first monograph also titled Zanele Muholi: Somnyama Ngonyama, Hail the Dark Lioness produced by Renée Mussai and Zanele Muholi.

Hanging out with Paul Miller aka DJ Spooky

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Paul Miller aka DJ Spooky That Subliminal Kid, Paula Grissom, Aku Kadogo and me.

Been following composer, multimedia artist and writer Paul Miller aka DJ Spooky That Subliminal Kid since the 90s. Truly genius. Finally had an opportunity to bring him to perform and work with students at Spelman College.

Generous and kind with a supersonic mind that easily catapults from Washington, D.C. to Antartica and all spaces around an in between. Great to hang out with him for a moment.

Paul’s Website

Directing Queen Sugar Episode 310

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My directorial debut for episodic television is for the show Queen Sugar. Titled Here Beside the River, the episode will air today, Wednesday, August 1, 2018, 10:o00 p.m. EST.   I’m excited. Very excited — and not just for personal reasons.

Queen Sugar Ep 310 — Photo Credit: Skip Bolen / @2018 Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc. All Rights Reserved

Ava DuVernay’s Queen Sugar is historic. Ava not only brought the novel of the same name to life on television, but  created a platform for women directors. So now, executives can’t say that there aren’t any women directors or women directors of color or Black women directors, which is what they have been saying for a very too long . Sometimes they throw in the word “qualified” to help make their case.  Busted!  It’s not the case and it never has been.

The Queen Sugar sisterhood is an amazing group of talented women including long time friends Julie Dash and Neema Barnette and now new friends.

But Ava didn’t just bring women filmmakers together. She changed the game at the union level.  More about this at another time.  For now.  I’m celebrating and thanking everyone who has made Queen Sugar possible — with a very special toast to Ava.

with DP Antonio Calvache, Dawn -Lyen Gardner (Charley Bordelon), and writer Chloé Hung

with Queen Sugar directors Nijla Mu’min and Rachel Raimist

with Tina Lifford (Aunt Vi)

with Nana-Kofi Siriboe (Ralph Angel)

with DeMane Davis (Producer/Director)

with Nicholas Ashe (Micah), Nikko Austen Smith (Asha), Myles Truit (Ant), Stevonte Hart (KJ) and Myron Parker Wright (Malik)