Blog Spotlight: Harlem World

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I went to my friend, & fellow Tisch alumnus, Rod Gailes’ New York Premier of his feature film “Camouflage” last week. It’s a very intriguing, thought provoking visual journey/film shot during the pre-gentrification of Harlem. I believe Rod began production on “Camouflage” close to 15 years ago. One of the many thoughts the film will leave you with is just how much potential, desire and hope was being suffocated in the impoverished circumstances of Harlem.

Flash forward many years later and we have that potential expressed. One excellent blog, worthy of a RSS feed, is “Harlem World”. Its a pretty content rich blog/magazine centered on Harlem. What caught my attention was just how much is focused on the arts. I just happened on the blog today (late to the party, I know) but greatly enjoyed this article on the “Negritude” exhibit at the Exit Art Gallery.

A taste:

“Harlem resident Greg Tate presents a three-room “Black Mystery Anti-Panopticon,” envisioning Négritude as a “place” for mystery and funk, music and soul. A DJ shrine, created by Tate and the artists Xaviera Simmons and Arthur Jafa, will provide a site for weekly performances; a raised stage outfitted with a drum kit, microphones, and amps will be used for occasional live music; and an exhibition of visionary black artists – including Thornton Dial, Jr., Thornton Dial, Sr., and Lonnie Holley – coupled with laminated pages from the books Souls Grown Deep: African American Vernacular Art, Vols. 1 and 2, will create a “conjuration room where willing spirits can come to get toasted, roasted, and lit the fuck up.”

Harlem World Blog also encourages “citizen journalists” to send interviews, photographs, news stories etc to: hwcontact@yahoo.com

Photo is of course James VanDerZee’s “Couple in Raccoon Coats”, which I believe is at the Studio Museum of Harlem.

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~ by Cybel Martin on May 3, 2009.

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