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Wednesdays, May 18 – June 8, 6 – 8pm

#SeeingtheBarnes

Li Sumpter. Collage (detail). Courtesy of MythMedia Studios

$220; members $198
(4 classes)

About the Class

A global pandemic, environmental crises, racial violence, and threats of nuclear war are all signs of very uncertain times. Images and narratives of the apocalypse dominate the visual and media landscape. Afrofuturism can be a tool of social change used to decode and demystify the cultural myths and systemic frameworks that give rise to our everyday reality. How are today’s current events and humanity’s dreams for tomorrow seen through the lens of Afrofuturism and the Black aesthetic? Learn about artists, storytellers, and visionaries creating at the intersection of Afrofuturism and Apocalypse and the hope and horrors that inform their POV on reality, their speculative worldbuilding, and their wildest dreams for whatever comes next.

This course takes place at the Barnes, in the Comcast NBCUniversal Auditorium, but is also available for online enrollment. All students, whether on-site or remote, will have the opportunity to participate in class discussions. More about online classes.

On-site capacity: 80

Note: Proof of COVID-19 vaccination is required to attend this class; face masks are welcome but not required.

Instructor

Li Sumpter

A multidisciplinary artist and scholar, Li applies strategies of worldbuilding and mythic design toward building better, more resilient future communities. She has an MA from NYU and an MA/PhD in mythological studies from Pacifica Graduate Institute. Li currently teaches at Haverford College and Moore College of Art & Design, and her research explores myth and media with a focus on apocalyptic narratives and Afrofuturism. She is the 2020 recipient of the Leeway Transformation Award and a 2022 nominee for the Pew Fellowship.

Art in Context

Art in Context courses connect works of art to history: What was happening politically, socially, and culturally at the time a piece was made? How did these circumstances shape the artist’s formal choices?