For our second C& Special Print Issue in English and German a young generation of African-American and Afro-German cultural producers created a space where the coherences and differences of Black history and present-day life were acknowledged, shared and reflected.
How do we put into form the many connections we have as being part of a global diaspora? How do we create our own language? What are our shared histories or do we remember them the same way? Does someone from Detroit define herself as part of a Black Diaspora with the same implicitness as someone from Berlin? Where does Afro-German identification with Black America fit in here? And what about allyship?
Last year in December five young writers from the US and four young writers from Germany got together at room project in Detroit. During a three-day workshop they asked themselves and each other these questions. What do we share and what is completely different? Tutored by Taylor Aldridge, the founder of arts.black magazine and given input by Legacy Russell, curator at Studio Museum Harlem, the group dug deep. The three days were a rare moment of a young generation of African-American and Afro-German cultural producers creating together a space where the coherences as well as differences of Black history and present-day life between Germany and the US where acknowledged, shared and reflected.
The result of this encounter is this issue you are holding in your hands. After the C& Special Print Issue #Nairobi, this edition is the second issue with mainly content by young arts writers.
Its a print issue that brings together eleven amazing voices tackling the above questions through very different approaches: from interviewing older generation artists such as Carl Nielbock and Ransome Stanley to underlining this generation’s importance in art history through short biographical notes on artists who have already passed away such as Mildred Thompson, Oliver Harrington and Ben Patterson. From rather biographical and poetic pieces to discussing the intersection of art and technology. By reflecting on US-American pop culture as an important reference point, which at the same time will never be completely fully comprehensible without a non-American cultural background. As a senior writer and thinker, Legacy Russell brings all these strings together by contemplating on what is actually a Black Archive.
We are very impressed and inspired by the contributions for this C& Special print issue was made possible within the framework of the German campaign Wunderbar Together – The Year of German-American Friendship, initiated by the German Federal Foreign Office (AA), the Goethe-Institut, and supported by the Federation of German Industries (BDI). This campaign works to highlight the decades-spanning foundation of common values, interests, and goals between the two countries.
Now, have a look and enjoy getting into the reflections of this very special encounter here.