8 Possible Beginnings or: The Creation of African-America, a Moving Picture by Kara E. Walker 2005 - © Kara WalkerAfro Modern - Journeys Through The Black Atlantic

Tate Liverpool
29th January - 25th April 2010

Reviewed by Michelle Charters

Last night, I was fortunate enough to attend the preview of the Afro Modern - Journeys Through the Black Atlantic exhibition at the TATE gallery.

It truly was an awe inspiring visit that left me with a sense of pride as a black woman and citizen of Liverpool.

The works of art took my breath away and made me proud of the achievements of so many black artistes and intellectuals who were showcased together in one place. The exhibition promotes pieces of art from early twentieth century to present day.

The work and collections chart the contribution and influences of so many greats and truly gives an insight into the depth of each artists contribution to world class art from a black perspective.

I felt pride that this unique and important exhibition was taking place in our city, and gave me time to recognise, reflect and remember the journey of so many whom I had read about in the past and yet here I was, face to face with those same works of art that I never dreamed I would see in my lifetime, let alone in a building in my city.

From the moment you walk onto the fourth floor you truly get a sense that history is in the making, especially when you are looking at a canvas of work, that for me I had only seen as a cover of a book that I had read.

As the night wore on, I also reflected on the fact that this important event was taking place in a building, on the dockside of the river that is a constant and painful reminder of the city’s involvement in the trade that had such an impact on our ancestry.

I do feel that It is our obligation to ensure that this important exhibition is seen by our families, our friends, colleagues and our networks so that the hard work of so many and the contribution of all is recognised and celebrated at this very time.

Personally, I was ‘buzzing’ that in other venues throughout the city (the Bluecoat, the Walker Art Gallery and FACT) each organisation had worked and contributed to showcase black art collectively as part of this journey which should be seen by all.

History was made and the city, the galleries and the community must never forget the collaboration and contribution that created a root to promote the diversity of what is fast becoming a major developing city.

I really felt the need to share this with you and hope that you may take the time to witness this important series of events. The leaflets and information can be collected from Kuumba Imani Millennium Centre or you can go direct to the following websites:


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