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Malcolm X in ROC: A Long Table Conversation and Installation
Gallery Seventy Four
Rochester, NY
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Malcolm X in ROC: A Long Table Conversation and Installation
The next "At the Crossroads: Activating the Intersection of Art and Justice," "Malcolm X in ROC" is on May 19, 3 to 6 pm. The event is a presented by 21st Century Arts in collaboration with Erica Bryant and Rajesh Barnabas, on the anniversary of Malcolm X's birth. It is the 10th segment and 14th event of At the Crossroads.

"Malcolm X in ROC: A Long Table Conversation and Installation" is presented at Gallery Seventy Four, which is an inclusive art space in Rochester, New York with free parking, wheel chair ramp, and elevator. It is located at 215 Tremont Street (Door 3/Floor 3), Rochester, New York, 14608.

Registration is $15. Register at

At "Malcolm X in ROC,"  presenters will play an audio recording of a speech delivered by Malcolm X at Corn Hill Methodist Church on February 16, 1965 (shortly before he was assassinated), screen film footage from another speech in Rochester, and Erica Bryant will host a Q&A with Nick Love who accompanied the person who recorded the speech that day. There will also be a contemporary, short film provocation. All of this will set off the conversation at the Long Table.

Though Malcolm X and his last visit to Rochester is the focus of the event, his life and work will inspire a contemporary conversation about issues of race and social justice in Rochester today.

The conversation starters will be comprised of people who were active in the Civil Rights movements in Rochester and beyond as well as those who were too young or not born and that time, but struggle for social justice today- in their work and as participants of contemporary movements.

"Human rights for most Black people in America are better than they were in 1965, but the impact of structural racism is persistent. We are still segregated. There are still significant disparities in resources and opportunities available to people of color, especially Black and Native people. Our lives are more at risk, says Rachel DeGuzman, founder and producer of At the Crossroads. When I read the text of the speech Malcolm X gave on February 16, 1965 in Corn Hill, I was disheartened to see just how much his analysis and recommendations for change continue to be relevant today - in 2018.

Some context:

In his speech at the Corn Hill Methodist Church on February 16, 1965, Malcolm X said, We live in a society that by and large is controlled by people who believe in segregation. We are living in a society that by and large is controlled by a people who believe in racism, and practice segregation and discrimination and racism.

Malcom X gave this speech in Rochester, two days after his New York City home was firebombed while he and his family were asleep in their beds. A week before his was assassinated on February 21, 1965. After he had gone on a pilgrimage to Mecca and left the Nation of Islam. He spoke in Rochester 7 months after Rochester's1964 Civil Rights Riots or Uprising.

What is a Long Table Conversation?
The Long Table is an experimental open public forum that is a hybrid performance-installation-roundtable designed to facilitate dialogue through the gathering together of people with common interests developed by the artist and academic Lois Weaver.

This is a performance of dinner table conversation where everyone seated at the table is a guest performer. Talk is the only course. There is no moderator just assistance from the host. It is a democracy. After the invited participants have chatted for 30-minutes, other attendees can tap someone's shoulder to take a seat at the table. The original participants are welcomed back to the conversation through the same process. There is an end, but no conclusion.

About "At the Crossroads: Activating the Intersection of Art and Justice":
In an interview on NBC's "Meet the Press," Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. noted the most segregated hour in America was 11 am on Sunday morning a day and time in 1960 when most Christians were at worship in church. Unfortunately, US churches aren't significantly more integrated today, and in Upstate New York, houses of worship are rivaled for the most segregated designation by the institutions and events of the art/culture sector.

"At the Crossroads: Activating the Intersections of Art and Justice," which was founded by Rachel DeGuzman and is produced by her company 21st Century Arts with collaboratives of organizers, began with a singular event, but has evolved into an ongoing initiative. Employing various forms of performance, presentation, organizing, and engagement coupled with entrepreneurial, innovative and experiential approaches this initiative will help to expand the regional anti-racism movement that is rigorously underway in other sectors of our community to the art and culture landscape.

Why is this important? Despite generations of progress and good intentions, a few years ago we, in Greater Rochester, NY, acknowledged that systemic racism persists. The community responded with a multi-faceted approach, which for the most part, doesn't encompass the impact of racism in the art and culture sector. Art/culture continues to be a segregated landscape with great disparities in representation and resources.

-Existing inequities in art and culture threaten the sustainability and vitality of the sector as well as the viability of the community.
-Racism impacts the degree to which art and culture is valued by its broadest citizenry
-Racism frustrates efforts to expand participation, including the diversification of staffs, boards, audiences and patrons
-Racism in the sector limits the art/culture we are exposed to and its standards of excellence (Look to the success of Hamilton as one example of untapped potential)
-Racism in art and culture distorts the story of us, which is often interpreted and retold by creatives
-Persistent racism in art and culture lessens its (potentially) powerful capacity to bring us together

The image in this post was designed by Rajesh Barnabas


Gallery Seventy Four (View)
215 Tremont Street (Door 3/3rd Floor)
Rochester, NY 14608
United States


Arts > Visual

Kid Friendly: Yes!
Dog Friendly: No
Non-Smoking: Yes!
Wheelchair Accessible: Yes!


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