Archive for March 2017
Dizy One (aka Kajal Singh) is one of India’s first female graffiti artists. She currently studies in Berlin and shuttled between there and Delhi. Dizy first became involved with graffiti art after she discovered hip hop dancing. Her brother is also a graffiti artist (known as Komet) and her mother is painter, so she says the “art is in her blood”.
“People in India are more appreciative ‘cause graffiti is not as well-known here. Well, people in Europe are not so appreciative as it [graffiti] is not new there and not many people see it as an art,” she recently said in a BuzzFeed interview.
Girl Power is a documentary that presents female graffiti writers from fifteen cities – from Prague to Moscow, Cape Town, Sydney, Biel, Madrid, Berlin, Toulouse, Barcelona and all the way to New York. The graffiti community is predominantly a man’s world, and men often share the view that graffiti – namely the illegal kind – is not for girls. And yet women have become increasingly more emancipated in recent years; there are female graffiti shows, magazines and websites. Girl Power captures the stories of ladies who have succeeded in the male graffiti world.
However, Girl Power is more than just a look into the graffiti microcosm; it tells the moving story of Czech writer Sany, who decided in 2009 to capture female emancipation in graffiti on film and to give other girls and women the possibility to express themselves. It took her 7 long years to complete the documentary. We follow her life with graffiti, her motivation and values that keep changing as the years go by. We will also meet her family, who are absolutely unaware of Sany’s “second life”. Sany sacrifices a lot for the film, but even when she’s at the end of her tether, she refuses to give up on her dream – to make the very first movie depicting females in graffiti.
Sany is the writer/director/producer of the film Girl Power, a documentary that presents female graffiti writers from fifteen cities – from Prague to Moscow, Cape Town, Sydney, Biel, Madrid, Berlin, Toulouse, Barcelona and all the way to New York. The graffiti community is predominantly a man’s world, and men often share the view that graffiti – namely the illegal kind – is not for girls. And yet women have become increasingly more emancipated in recent years; there are female graffiti shows, magazines and websites. Girl Power captures the stories of ladies who have succeeded in the male graffiti world.
Sany studied marketing communication. She actively participates in organizing cultural events in Prague and abroad. She has produced several big festivals and is one the only female graffiti writers in the Czech Republic. She has devoted herself to graffiti for 15 years.
Amer F. Ahmed, Ed.D, serves as Director of Intercultural Teaching and Faculty Development at University of Massachusetts – Amherst, Faculty at the Summer and Winter Institutes for Intercultural Communication and a member of SpeakOut: Institute for Democratic Leadership and Culture. He has been featured on MSNBC’s “Melissa Harris Perry” show and in Dr. Shakti Butler’s film on racism entitled “Cracking the Codes.” An individual with eclectic personal and professional experience, he is a Hip Hop activist, spoken word poet, diversity consultant and college administrator, channeling his diverse experiences into work geared towards facilitating effective intercultural development. Amer’s education in Anthropology and Black Studies, professional experience in Higher Education and extensive global experiences support his efforts to address issues of social justice that continue to face traditionally marginalized communities. He is also engaged in the field of Intercultural Communication with a focus on a developmental approach to Intercultural competency. Such approaches have been useful in his work in Organizational Assessment and Development, Inclusive Human Resource Management, Workshop facilitation, Public Speaking, Leadership Development and Student Support.
Behulum helped usher in a new era of street artists in Ethiopia since his emergence more than 7 years ago. Based in Hawassa, Behulum has painted murals in many countries in East Africa. He designed the cover of the first issue of Telling Our Own Stories magazine and has also begun working in clothing design.
In 2009, Rene merged his entertainment experience, love of music and unique power to inspire youth by founding the Hip Hop Loves Foundation, a nonprofit foundation which produces educational seminars grounded in hip hop culture. Rene has spearheaded Hip Hop Loves workshops in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Ottawa, Canada and Harlem, New York, has lectured on the powers of motivating youth through sports and hip hop at Brown University and has been featured in Black Enterprise Magazine.
Some of Rene’s other professional successes include launching Spitkicker, an urban lifestyle company and Omega Artist Management, a talent management firm. Through both of these companies, Rene, organized and promoted concert tours and music industry events, produced a weekly urban radio show on XM Satellite Radio and worked directly with talent including Dave Chappelle, Kanye West, Common, De La Soul and Mos Def. Rene also is the co-founder of Supernodes, a multi-cultural wine networking group which regularly organizes social events for diverse professionals in cities across the United States.
Rene received his Bachelor of Arts in Political Science and International Relations from Syracuse University.
Fedor Kyrlezhev (a.k.a Madd Chief) is a drummer, beat maker, poet, public activist; CEO of DA EXIT NGO, ideologist and founder of HIP HOP UNION movement in Moscow. He is the organizer of the regular funk hop events in the Alexey Kozlov Club. He is also a lecturer, organizer of the conferences, festivals, theater plays and social projects (hip hop school for kids).
Yuri Savelyev (a.k.a Bboy Gaws) is a dancer, B-boy and the Director of the Federation of Sport Dance in the Samara Region in Russia. he has been a dance instructor since 2000. In 2006, he received his masters degree in V.N. Tatischev Volzhsky University in Information Technology. He organizes hip hop festivals, events, master classes and seminars in Tolyatti, Russia. He has opened more than 10 dance schools in the city and neighborhoods, and worked with the state Autograd library as an event consultant.
Greg Childs is an Assistant Professor of History at Brandies University. He researches and teaches in the fields of Latin American, Caribbean, and African Diaspora studies. His first book project, entitled Seditious Spaces, Public Politics: Antiracism, freedom, and sedition in 1798 Bahia, Brazil, provides an in depth examinations of a late eighteenth century movement known as the Tailor’s Conspiracy. Often regarded as the first attempt at a “social revolution” in Brazil, the participants called for an end to Portuguese rule, the extinction of racial discrimination, increases in wages and promotions for soldiers and artisans, and the abolition of slavery in Bahia. Seditious Spaces, Public Politics examines how this movement was orchestrated, organized, and promoted across the physical spaces of the city, emphasizing the relationship between urban geography and the idea of the ‘public’ in the late eighteenth century. The book is thus a contribution to the history of the public sphere in Latin America and to the intellectual history of the African Diaspora.
His next research project, provisionally titled “The Madness of Blacknes: or the Confinement of Freedom in the Post Emancipation Era, traces the development of ideas and practices that linked freedom from slavery with mental insanity across the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. The development of this project stems from two observations. On the one hand, planters, officials, and medical personnel throughout the nineteenth century blamed ideas about political independence for “infecting” the minds of otherwise obedient slaves and turning them into would-be rebels. According to this discourse, the desire for freedom induced mental disturbances. On the other hand, movements to abolish slavery in Brazil, Cuba, and the US South from the 1830s onward unfolded alongside the professionalization of psychiatry and pharmacology in Europe and the Americas. In the discourses that accompanied this professionalization, black mental deficiencies were often attributed to assumed biological inferiorities that had not been allowed to evolve due to slavery. I am thus seeking to understand two things. First, why did slavery become a site for debating the relationship between madness and freedom in the phase of nation-state formation? Secondly, how best to try and understand the relationship between discourses of black mental illness and actual health issues affecting people of African descent in post-emancipation Cuba and Brazil?
At Brandeis, he teaches introductory courses at the undergraduate and graduate level on Latin American and Caribbean history; on Slavery, Freedom, and Colonialism in the Americas; on the History of Graffitti; and on Historical Methodologies and Theories
David D Omni is a hip hop artist and youth leader, as well as the Director of a Cuban Hip Hop and Culture center in Havana that promotes social causes and justice through hip hop and community service. David D Omni also runs the largest independent music studio in Havana, with focus on hip hop production and recordings. In addition, David is the Director of the Cuban Magazine called OFFLINE, that focuses on Cuban Hip Hop and other forms of art and expression. David regularly hosts concerts for artists and performers that are blacklisted and censored by the Cuban government. David is also censored in Cuba and prohibited to perform in any state venue in Cuba due to his commitment to socially conscience, pro-democratic and critical stance to conditions in Cuba. Info on David D Omni: http://daviddomni.wix.com/david-d-omni#!
The Cuban Soul Foundation (CSF) is a multidisciplinary non-profit organization dedicated to producing, presenting, and promoting music, theater, dance, film and visual arts with an emphasis on alternative Cuban art and culture. The CSF presents live performances by innovative music artists from Cuba’s independent and alternative scene. We also showcase independent film screenings from Cuba’s underground film academy. The CSF hosts an international artist’s cultural exchange program, inviting Cuban artists to showcase their art in Miami and throughout the United States. The Cuban Soul Foundation has also extended a full outreach program that includes partnerships with other arts organizations and universities. We are located at 7416 SW 42nd St Miami Fl 33155. For info on events contact firstname.lastname@example.org or call 786-402-1064. Website: cubansoulfoundation.org Facebook: @cubansoulfoundation
CSF Organizational History
The CSF was established to help mitigate the resource and support deprivation suffered by independent musicians, writers, teachers and poets living on the island, to provide interaction among them and with their regional counterparts. The CSF has established strong networks and strategic alliances with major US and international NGO’s, pro-democracy organizations, universities and academic institutions to augment the impact of its projects and programs, including: George Washington University, Georgetown University, University of Florida, FSU-Center for the Advancement of Human Rights, University of South Florida, Florida International University’s (FIU) Cuba Research Institute, School of International and Public Affairs (SIPA) and Vaclav Havel’s Institute, the REDLAD, the Fundación Libertad, CADAL and others.
The CSF headquarters and cultural center is located in Miami, Fl., within the Bird Road Arts District. The center is dedicated to assisting Cuban artists, youth and activists with training and resources. Within the center is a gallery, fully functional music recording studio, performance venue, office space and dance studio, providing Cubans on the island with external training on how to run and operate multifunctional independent spaces, organizational management, project management, financing and budgeting, evaluation and analysis, marketing, social media, video theory, and vocal training.
The CSF has been engaged and working inside Cuba since April 2009, working with independent and censored artists and youth. From April 2009 thru December 2016 the CSF coordinated and produced OVER 460 community uncensored events that witnessed over 45,000 participants. During that time, the CSF also provided 300 sessions and 1,200 hours of external training to over 80 Cuban artists, youth and activists. The CSF has conducted over 2,466 hours of on-island workshops/training, via 1,220 sessions to 700 direct beneficiaries.