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“JUST US”, A Celebration and Reflection on the Life and Legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. at the CAC – January 17

NEW ORLEANS – The CAC announced JUST US, its third annual celebration and reflection on the life and legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., on Monday, January 17, 2022, from 12:00 PM – 4:00 PM.  Inspired by the recently completed mural on the CAC’s Camp St. building by New York City-based conceptual artist Sanford Biggers, “JUST US” will feature music by DJ Raj Smoove,  an interactive altar by Ifátùmínínú Bamgbàlà  Arẹ̀sà and sound artist Ifádáhùnsi Bamgbàlà Arẹ̀sà, and free gallery admission to the CAC’s current exhibition Prospect.5: Yesterday we said tomorrow. The event will also feature an artist panel discussion led by Kesha McKey of KM Dance Project, who will discuss their dance work Raw Fruit and the legacy of matriarchy, family, and community in activism. McKey will be joined by guest panelists Catherine Caldwell, Associate Director of KM Dance Project and free feral, an interdisciplinary artist. “JUST US” is free and open to the public, with RSVPs required at cacno.org, The CAC is located at 900 Camp Street, New Orleans, LA. For more information, visit cacno.org.

For the safety of our community, proof of vaccination or negative COVID-19 PCR test within 72 hours of attending the CAC is required for admission. Mask-wearing is required at all times when not actively eating or drinking. Questions? Contact us at info@cacno.org.

Sanford Biggers’ mural consists of a cloud-filled sky with large bold fonts that spell out “JUST US.”  A previous version of the work was displayed at Rockefeller Center as a 125-foot mural in the Center’s concourse. ARTDAILY NEWS described the Rockefeller Center installation,  Just Us displays a clouded sky punctuated with the words Just Us in transparent font, filled with another cloud view. Just Us both evokes ‘justice’ and highlights an unnamed group ‘us,’ suggesting the multifaceted and nuanced nature of the idea of ‘justice.’ Here the conflation of text and image questions notions of stability and consistency of meaning within language.”  The mural is the latest installment ofUnframed presented by The Helis Foundation, a project of the Arts Council of New Orleans that brings the vibrancy of New Orleans Arts District from the gallery walls into the streets.

JUST US” EVENT SCHEDULE

Monday, January 17, 2022

12 PM – 4 PM:

  • Interactive Altar by Ifátùmínínú Bamgbàlà  Ar̀sà and sound artist Ifádáhùnsi Bamgbàlà Ar̀sà
  • Music by DJ Raj Smoove
  • Free gallery admission to Prospect.5 Yesterday we said tomorrow

1 PM – 2 PM

Panel Discussion featuring Kesha McKey, free feral, and Catherine Caldwell

Panelist Bios:

Kesha McKey, Artistic Director of KM Dance Project, is a choreographer, educator and performing artist from New Orleans. After graduating from NOCCA she received her BS from Xavier University of LA and her MFA in Dance Performance from UW-Milwaukee. Her recent performance credits include Urban Bush Women’s Hair and Other Stories 2018 tour, Junebug Productions Gomela:to return tour and Homecoming Project. Kesha has presented choreography for the 2018 UBW Summer Leadership Institute, 2018 Women in Dance Conference, Roots Week 2016, the 2016 Peridance APAP Showcase, and the annual Dance for Social Change Festival. Her recent awards include a 2018 CAC Southern Crossings Artist Residency, 2016 Dancing While Black Fellowship, and a 2016 Jacob’s Pillow scholarship. She is a faculty member of the Urban Bush Women SLI, and the Dance Department Chair at NOCCA.

Catherine Caldwell, Associate Director of KM Dance Project, was born and raised in New Orleans, Louisiana. She is a performing artist, choreographer and dance educator holding a Master of Arts Degree in Arts Administration from the University of New Orleans. Catherine is an Administrative Fellow with Junebug Productions and has spent over ten years teaching dance in the New Orleans Charter School system, and most recently as a member of the Dance Faculty at New Orleans Center for Creative Arts (NOCCA). She was selected as a Teacher Fellow with the Bates Dance Festival and has participated in the Martha Graham School of Contemporary Dance Teacher Workshop, as well as the Ailey School Horton Teacher Workshop. Catherine is now serving as the new Program Logistics Coordinator for Urban Bush Women.

free feral is a California-raised, New Orleans-based string player, composer and interdisciplinary artist. Known for their work as the violinist in Leyla McCalla’s critically acclaimed trio, free’s own songwriting explores psychic landscapes through blues and folk traditions utilizing an array of stringed instruments, vocal textures & looping. Their career has been wide-ranging, straddling a multitude of musical and performative forms, including collaborations with filmmakers, poets, puppeteers, folk and contemporary musicians. An artist with a singular voice and focus, free is driven by a desire for justice, equity, and accountability in the music industry and beyond.

This program is made possible with support from The Helis Foundation, with general programming support from Walda and Sydney Besthoff, the City of New Orleans, Louisiana Division of the Arts, and The Domain Companies.

The CAC’s presentation of Raw Fruit by Kesha Mckey and KM Dance Project, scheduled for January 14 – January 16, 2022, has been postponed due to health and safety concerns. The performance will be rescheduled for the Fall of 2022.

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