Baltimore Museum of Art (BMA) Hosts Author Isabel Wilkerson and Stoop Storytelling for Great Migration Exhibition Opening Events

BALTIMORE, MD – The Baltimore Museum of Art (BMA) today announced two special programs celebrating the public opening of A Movement in Every Direction: Legacies of the Great Migration, a groundbreaking exhibition with newly commissioned works by 12 of the most acclaimed artists working today. The Community Day on Sunday, October 30, from 1 to 5 p.m., includes free admission to the exhibition, artmaking with Safiyah Cheatam, dance performance by Moving History, on-site participation in the Legacies of the Great Migration Interactive, and light fare from H3irloom Food Group and Mera Kitchen Collective. At 4 p.m., the BMA partners with Open Society Institute-Baltimore (OSI) to host a virtual conversation with acclaimed author Isabel Wilkerson, who wrote the award-winning book The Warmth of Other Suns: The Epic Story of America’s Great Migration. Wilkerson will share her perspectives on the Great Migration and its relevance to present-day migration via Zoom for the audience in the BMA’s auditorium and for a limited number of participants online. Registration is required for both in-person and virtual attendance. This event is part of OSI’s Talking About Race series, which first featured Wilkerson in 2011. Recording is not permitted.

On Thursday, November 3, Baltimore’s popular Stoop Storytelling Series comes to the BMA for “Movement in Every Direction: Stories about Modern-Day Migration.” This free event features a variety of speakers who tell seven-minute true tales about escape and exodus, oppression and opportunity, resettlement and regeneration—and the profound act of making a home away from home. The event begins at 6:30 p.m., doors open at 6 p.m. Visit artbma.org for more information and to register.

A Movement in Every Direction: Legacies of the Great Migration is a groundbreaking exhibition that explores the profound impact of a pivotal time in American history through the perspectives of 12 acclaimed contemporary artists. Akea Brionne, Mark Bradford, Zoë Charlton, Larry W. Cook, Torkwase Dyson, Theaster Gates Jr., Allison Janae Hamilton, Leslie Hewitt, Steffani Jemison, Robert Pruitt, Jamea Richmond-Edwards, and Carrie Mae Weems were commissioned to make new works that reflect on their connections to the South, migration, ancestry, and land. The exhibition encompasses an extraordinary range of painting, sculpture, drawing, video, sound, and immersive installations that are both communally resonant and deeply personal. The exhibition is on view from October 30, 2022, through January 29, 2023. Tickets are available beginning September 30.

A Movement in Every Direction: Legacies of the Great Migration is co-organized by the BMA and Mississippi Museum of Art (MMA) and co-curated by Jessica Bell Brown (she/her), BMA Curator and Department Head of Contemporary Art, and Ryan N. Dennis (she/her), MMA Chief Curator and Artistic Director of the Museum’s Center for Art and Public Exchange.

Isabel Wilkerson, winner of the Pulitzer Prize and the National Humanities Medal, has become a leading figure in narrative nonfiction, an interpreter of the human condition, and an impassioned voice for demonstrating how history can help us understand ourselves, our country, and our current era of upheaval. She is a native of Washington, D.C., and a daughter of the Great Migration. She won the Pulitzer Prize for Feature Writing in 1994, as Chicago Bureau Chief of The New York Times, making her the first African-American woman to win a Pulitzer Prize in journalism. She then devoted 15 years and interviewed more than 1,200 people to tell the story of the six million people, among them her parents, who defected from the Jim Crow South. Her debut work, The Warmth of Other Suns: The Epic Story of America’s Great Migration, won the National Book Critics Circle Award, the Heartland Prize for Nonfiction, the Anisfield-Wolf Award for Nonfiction, the Lynton History Prize from Harvard and Columbia universities, and the Stephen Ambrose Oral History Prize, and was shortlisted for both the Pen-Galbraith Literary Award and the Dayton Literary Peace Prize. Her latest book, Caste: The Origins of Our Discontents (2020), examines the unspoken caste system that has shaped America and shows how a hierarchy of social divisions still defines our lives today. Caste is being adapted into a Netflix film directed, written, and produced by Ava DuVernay. For more information on this speaker, please visit prhspeakers.com.

A Movement in Every Direction: Legacies of the Great Migration is a groundbreaking exhibition that explores the profound impact of a pivotal time in American history through the perspectives of 12 acclaimed contemporary artists. Akea Brionne, Mark Bradford, Zoë Charlton, Larry W. Cook, Torkwase Dyson, Theaster Gates Jr., Allison Janae Hamilton, Leslie Hewitt, Steffani Jemison, Robert Pruitt, Jamea Richmond-Edwards, and Carrie Mae Weems were commissioned to make new works that reflect on their connections to the South, migration, ancestry, and land. The exhibition encompasses an extraordinary range of painting, sculpture, drawing, video, sound, and immersive installations that connect past and present. The exhibition is on view from October 30, 2022, through January 29, 2023.

More information: https://artbma.org

Isabel Wilkerson. Photo by Joe Henson.

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