Saturday, April 23, 2016

Black Space Filled with Light...

Hello Luvs,
A SPace og LigHT...

Happy Saturday! For me, this week went by like lightning traveling across a cloud filled sky. Even so, I have so many memories of a week that shifted in many things for me. There is something to be said about stepping out from your comfort zone and taking a step toward the new, unexpected, and unmapped.

Things have changed regarding our plans. With both kiddos agreeing to be home schooled. Feeling the traditional route is a hinderance is where we are. Will it change our plans for returning for another year after our summer in Canada? Maybe... Will our friends and family see us more because we are completely mobile? Maybe.... Will I take the step to complete my current projects? Most Likely! One of the pluses about being a transient and nomadic family will be that I can expose more people to my books and album. The latter is taking on shape as we speak.

That brings me to the reason/subject of today's blog. As I mentioned before...stepping outside your zone can be a really good thing. I have found that I can be can sit next to someone and express my passions with the best of them. However, getting to that spot can prove to be a challenge for me. Even though I know that I have multiple talents to offer the world I still have issue taking that first step. Earlier this week I did just that.
Presence Above...

Tarish 'Jeghetto Maestro!' Pipkins invited me to join him and some other folks including Pierce Freelon at Black Space. It is located under the Post Office on Franklin Street (Teen Center home of BeatMakingLab), and it is a place where magic happens. Magic in the sense that likeminded people finding a place to talk and grow while relying on their belief that the Black Community needs to bond together in Unity. Now, when I say that it is not saying it is not an inclusive space. Hopefully I am conveying this correctly when saying that is is an Afrofuturistic Community Space. All who wish to share in the Village Mentality are welcome to pop a squat and engage in lively discussions, jam sessions, or themed nights. There are so many things that tear apart the web of Human Connection and taking steps toward weaving it back to a salvageable state is necessary.
No need to look up
He knows it is there.

Before I write about the goodness that went down I should walk you through my first few minutes there. At first I could not find out how to get in. Might sound silly, but the doors that looked like they led there were locked. I arrived after 7 p.m. which was the starting time (which I should not have taken literally with most of us being artists). Talking to myself saying, "Kat, did yuu have it right? You know that you are in the right place. Wait...maybe the entrance is on the other side." As a made my third circle around the building and was about to give up I saw Pierce enter with a few other Gentlemen and followed just behind. My entrance might have been a tad bit awkward (ok, really awkward!). Stilted 'Hellos' and what's ups followed. It was not as if they were saying I was unwelcome...they seemed to be discussing something, and I came in during some goodbyes and continuation of the conversation after. I have had that happen on my end. I know how odd it can seem even though that was not what I was trying to put out there.

So, that was the start. After things quickly changed. I started to notice all the Art Goodness that was all around me. There were many puppets designed by Tarish. A gorgeous mural adorned a wall, and multiple art pieces by a talented artist named Damita Hicks were displayed. Add to that all the music equipment, miniature piano, and several places to sit comfortably you realize that this is a place to let your guard down and raise your spirit up. It is a venue in which it's name might lead you to the opposite of what it stands for. It is a place in which the funnel of Humanity can steady itself and blare out into the world.

I met a mature woman whom Pierce refers affectionately as 'Grandma'. I am not sure if she is his matriarch or is held in that regard. Either way, from the short conversation and the wonderful hugs she gave everyone (even me after the phrase 'Alright, get up and give me some.') you see just how high their regard is for her.

Another of her pieces.
One of Damita's pieces.
I had a wonderful conversation with Damita about what I am up to and what she is working on. We are definitely both focused on helping youth minds bloom with exposure to art in it's many forms to children who will not be exposed to them normally. It was reaffirming that there are other people who feel the way I do. She is a sweetheart whose voice matches her lovlieness. The part of our conversation where we discussed home schooling was a needed one. She started homeschooling her daughter in middle school and she graduated with her G.E.D. at sixteen and will be a Junior at UNC in the fall. Talk about a meant to be meeting! Oh, and we might also try to see if we can work together sometime in regard to her program. Like I said.....Light!
To him it was all a blur....
Enough said?

This handsome chap
sits on a shelf.

Elephant Down!
With the use of recycled materials
Tarish does amazing things!!!

After a bit Tarish arrived and I took many more photos. Every time I turned around I noticed another puppet or art piece that I admired. I was in a place surrounded by talented passionate people, and I was overwhelmed with the feeling of comfort and community. We had a long conversation about eating bugs, the length of skirts (courtesy of something said by Erykah Badu), and politics including the corruption we are seeing happen. The latter reinforcing the fact that our country has not come as far as many have known for a while (others more so than me and my naive mind) and that so called Democrats can be just as underhanded as the Republican Party. I was so pleased to find that my opinion was not shot down and discounted but instead listened to and given room to expand on my perspective. It is not often when that happens. Many times others go the 'my way is the highway' route. It got lively but not in a bad way.
No! I would not be ok with a spider
that big!

As it reached the hour of everyone heading home I had only one jamming. A couple of people messed around with samples and the keyboard but not much more. Well, that gives me a reason to return. When I do...I will write about it. Until then, please enjoy some of the pictures I took (with their permission of course).

Til next time,

This cutie sits in the corner next
to a collection of books by Black Authors
and/or about the Black Experience
Arachnid meet sneakers....

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