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Discussion: November 12 | 5 PM
Exhibition On View: September 24 – December 17
In Memory of Kea Tawana 1940 – 2016
Gallery Aferro and the Clement A. Price Institute on Ethnicity, Culture, and the Modern Experience welcome you to a major exhibition on Newark’s legendary piece of public art. Kea Tawana’s Ark, a three-story wooden boat that rose above Newark NJ’s Central Ward, was only extant for five years, from 1982-1987. Yet hundreds of people have come forward during the past year to share their vivid memories of the ark, which was built by one woman out of salvaged pieces of city houses, churches, schools, and factories.
In much the same manner, Gallery Aferro and the Clement A. Price Institute on Ethnicity, Culture, and the Modern Experience at Rutgers University – Newark have “built” an exhibit out of the carefully gathered, surviving pieces of an incredible true story: archival press and TV broadcast footage; ephemera from private and public collections; photographs from artists, journalists, and family photo albums; new oral history recordings, public records, maps and geographic data; and previously un-exhibited examples of Kea’s artwork, writings, and objects, including a collection of handmade stained glass windows and a set of blueprints for a utopian city, combine to create an immersive experience deep in a complicated story.
The public is invited to explore the meaning and significance of this quintessential Newark story through the exhibit as well as connected public programming, with additional speakers and activities to be announced throughout the fall:
Saturday, September 24, 7 – 10 PM | Opening reception with song and spoken word by Emily Turonis and Kween Moore
October 2, 8 PM | Dance performance by Storyboard P
November 5, 2 PM | Locating the Ark Part 1: Discussion with Sharon Zukin, Caitlin Tucker-Melvin, Torkwase Dyson, Kameelah Janan Rasheed, Julia Rabig and others to be announced.
Nov 7, 6:30 PM | Ark of Bones: Reading and Discussion of the late Henry Dumas’s short story “Ark of Bones” with writers, critics and poets Evie Shockley and Carter Mathes (Rutgers-New Brunswick) and John Keene (Rutgers-Newark). In collaboration with the Department of African American and African Studies at Rutgers University-Newark. Free, but registration required at eventbrite.com
Nov 12, 5 PM | Locating the Ark Part 2: Screenings and Discussion with Margot Niederland, “Broken Angel,” and Tiona McClodden/Harriet’s Gun Media, “KILO | Iba se 99.”
December 17, 3 PM | Closing Reception and 8th Annual Potluck, with listening party for radio play, and performances/invocation by special guests
FREE GROUP TOURS AVAILABLE: Book a free tour for your group to explore Kea’s Ark of Newark: a Life in Works. Gallery Aferro has hosted tours for a wide range of groups, including schools, colleges, senior groups, professional and civic associations, recovery programs, and many others. Contact Gallery Aferro at email@example.com to inquire.
For more information about Gallery Aferro visit http://www.aferro.org/
For more information about the Clement A. Price Institute visit http://ethnicity.rutgers.edu/
Image: Camille Billops