Rhythm of Revolution- The Transformative Power of Black Art 1619 to the Present
Now until March 2, 2024
National Afro-American Museum & Cultural Center, Wilberforce
The National Afro-American Museum and Cultural Center in Wilberforce, Ohio, presents a new exhibit called Rhythm of Revolution-The Transformative Power of Black Art 1619 to the Present. The exhibit maps the visual flow of artistic, cultural, social, and political change in America from 1619 to the present day. Using three-dimensional objects from the NAAMCC collections, Rhythm of Revolution explores how Black artists, religious leaders, and activists worked within their spheres of influence to transform Ohio and our nation. Over time, these known and unknown change agents connected deeply rooted African traditions, interpreted those traditions to attempt to solve contemporary challenges, and worked to pave the way forward into a better future.
This exhibit was created by the NAAMCC curators Rosa Rojas, Hadley Drodge, and Derek Pridemore, who worked with Wright State University graduate students in Public History. The students did the research, selected the collections objects, and assisted with developing Rhythm of Revolution. Graduate student Daniel Willis said, “I found the class to be an incredibly eye-opening experience, and it was nice to explore a different side of museum work. Paring down my panel text into concise yet informative blurbs was the biggest challenge I faced. In the end, it is immensely satisfying to see the final product.” Classmate Travis Terracino added, “The most challenging thing about history is speaking for those who cannot speak for themselves anymore. This class aided me in understanding a deep and often overlooked American history, and allows the artists, dreamers, and leaders to come alive and share their stories.”
NAAMCC assistant curator Hadley Drodge explains, “NAAMCC has been collaborating with the Wright State Public History Program for several years to provide hands-on exhibit creation and collections management experience to students. We had the students do a deep dive into the history and accomplishments of African Americans’ to be better historians.” NAAMCC curatorial assistant Derek Pridemore added, “As Wright State Public History grads, it’s important to us and NAAMCC to allow students to gain valuable work experience that could help them find employment in the museum field. Hadley and I had the good fortune of being former interns here, and we received the same mentoring from our staff and museum leadership.