Come and Celebrate with me: Self Care & Love in Continued Terror of Black Live in America #sayhername

I am settling into my home, NYC, after 2 weeks away in Andover, Mass. I was a selected participant in the Andover Bread Loaf writing workshop for educators. I must confess I attended with selfish intentions. This experience was embraced for Tiffany, the person not teacher Tiff. I was hyper aware of my need to challenge my self damaging notions of my inability to write. I needed a space in which I would approach my writing with a new attitude. I needed to be affirmed. And I was.

I am a re-born poet! And newly born writer!

The 2 weeks gifted many lessons, that I intend on writing installments on this blog. *lets manifest this yall*

While away news of the passing our sister Sandra Bland hit my newsfeed. Rage, sorrow, confusion, hit my heart & soul. Questions still remain unanswered.

In these times when we can easily be buried from the weight of the heartbreaks, the wakes, the shakes in the foundation of humanity, I chose to find the space to celebrate. To remind myself that this work is worth it because life, HUMANITY, is beautiful. Through celebration; laughing, loving, dancing; humanity shines through the terror and I am recharged to do the work.

It is also when I turn to my ancestors and elders for guidance. Our ancestors have left us their wisdom in song, dance, art and writing. These artifacts have become my spiritual doctrine, their life is a testimony of the magic, beauty of the universe, of the divine nature of brown people.

Our mother ancestor Lucille Clifton spoke to me during my 2 weeks away in her poem, Won’t Celebrate with Me.

won’t you celebrate with me
what i have shaped into
a kind of life? i had no model.
born in babylon
both nonwhite and woman
what did i see to be except myself?
i made it up
here on this bridge between
starshine and clay,
my one hand holding tight
my other hand; come celebrate
with me that everyday
something has tried to kill me
and has failed.

—Lucille Clifton
I celebrate because I AM HERE, YOU ARE HERE, WE ARE HERE! Our loving, our laughing, our healing is our mojo. It is the life force that Mother Lucille knew was our pot gold. We are the unwanted but the most needed. Everyday something has tried to kill us and has failed. We are unstoppable. Remember to say our ancestors name, celebrate them. Sandra, my sister, I say your name because they took you from us, from those who loved into the powerful woman you are. They tried to kill your legacy and failed.
Sending my love to you all.
Take care of yourself.
I close this post with Mother Lucille reading her word magic.

AFFIRMATIONS: Honoring Self & Community Care for & with Educators of Color

WEB_AFFIRMATIONS_FLYER_FRONT

I am proud to have illustrated and designed the flyer for:

Affirmations: Honoring Self & Community Care for and with Educators of Color! 

Did I also mention I am PERFORMING! 

I invite you to affirm your greatness, your purpose, your beauty, your healing. Affirm YOU!

Growing into 2015, I affirmed to re-emerge as Artist.

This year I have been working on projects outside of my classroom walls.

Event details are below, share, invite and hope to see you there! 

As educators of color we are often expected to take the lead–or asked to remained silent–on difficult conversations about race, and other aspects of our identities. At our respective institutions this role can often be both a necessary responsibility as well as a burden. Particularly in an age of contentious debate and protest over the heighten visibility of the police state and its affects on black lives and ongoing marches and protests calling for racial justice, the need to re-center race, self and community care and healing are crucial and imperative.

AFFIRMATIONS emerged out of NYCoRE’s Inquiry to Action Group (ItAG) #BeyondtheMarches: Living, Teaching and Organizing through the Intersections, and our collective desire to support #blacklivesmatter movement building. Through performances, sharing heart stories, songs, dances and herbal teas AFFIRMATIONS intention is to honor, explore, lift up and affirm self and community care by and for educators of color. The hope is that we all can build a pedagogical practice that is courageous and also sustainable.

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EVENTBRITE TICKETS: http://bit.ly/1dmNJB9
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Performance Nights
Saturday, May 30th, 6-8pm. Followed by fellowship hour 8pm. *For people/educators of color only*

Sunday, May 31st, 6-8pm. Followed by fellowship hour: 8pm. *For people/educators of color only*

Sunday, June 7th, 6-8pm. Followed by fellowship hour: 8pm. *For people/educators of color and white allies*

All donations and proceeds from the door will go to healers and organizers in the #blacklivesmatter movement building.

Because of the donation ticket structure for this show, multiple tickets must be purchased in separate transactions. We’re sorry for any inconvenience this might cause; it’s a limitation of this website. No one will be turned away for lack of funds.

Guest author: The Familiar Tale of Race, Power, Privilege and black life in America

Here is an entry I did post a PD/workshop I co-lead in relation to art education NOW & #blacklivesmatter.

ENJOY

Art Education at City College of New York

IMG_8122Author Tiffany Jones reflects on the recent Teaching Art Today: #BlackLivesMatter Teach in held at the New Museum on March 19, 2015.

Teaching art today is an opportunity to discuss life and all its complexities, while providing an outlet and the skills for students to communicate a message. Art provides students with a pathway to healing, empowerment and advocacy. Art makes their thoughts visual thereby making the artist visible, hard to ignore. Therefore as art educators I invite us to be agents of change, who explore hard issues like race in our space of learning.

So where to start?
Breathe! Self-care is imperative. Be mindful of yourself and your limits. Acknowledge
that race is a social construct that produces, informs and sustains a long list of social
injustices like police brutality. Race is a Goliath and it’s not only your task to address it.

It’s a social issue. So…

View original post 409 more words

ARTIST TALK: Lorraine O’Grady

The Brooklyn Museum is one of the many reasons I moved to Brooklyn. I love it.  Every first Saturday of the month the Brooklyn Museum has FREE NIGHT filled with theme events. This month celebrates the rich history and culture of Haiti! Did I say I love this place!

In addition there will be an artist talk with Lorraine O’Grady at 7pm! YIPPPPPY Lorraine O’Grady is one of the many current African American Artist that deals with themes of Diaspora identities, womanhood and family. She truly inspires me and I hope  to be one of the 30 that get to enjoy her talk!  Above is one of the images from  her work titled: Miscegenated Family Album Details below:

Artist Lorraine O’Grady talks about her work  Miscegenated Family Album, the Museum’s featured object for August. Free tickets (30) are available at the Visitor Center at 5 p.m.