Join Aimee Meredith Cox, Rashida Bumbray, and Sharifa Rhodes-Pitts for a special gathering of conversations and performances centered on questions of embodied memory, ritual, and artistic reclamation practices that are committed to regeneration and the imagining of possible futures.
Aimee Meredith Cox is jointly appointed as an Associate Professor in the departments of African American Studies and Anthropology at Yale University. She earned her M.A. and PhD in Cultural Anthropology from the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor and B.A. with honors in Anthropology from Vassar College. Her research and teaching interests lie at the intersection of Anthropology, Black Studies, and Performance Studies. Cox’s first monograph, Shapeshifters: Black Girls and the Choreography of Citizenship (Duke 2015), won a book award from the Society for the Anthropology of North America, a 2016 Victor Turner Book Prize in Ethnographic Writing and Honorable Mention from the 2016 Gloria E. Anzaldúa Book Prize, given by the National Women’s Studies Association. She is the editor of the forthcoming volume, Gender: Space (MacMillan). Cox is also a former professional dancer. She danced on scholarship with the Dance Theatre of Harlem and toured extensively with Ailey II. Her next ethnographic project, Living Past Slow Death, explores the creative strategies individuals and communities enact to reclaim Black life in the urban United States. Cox is the recipient of the 2017-18 Virginia C. Gildersleeve Professorship awarded by Barnard College.
Rashida Bumbray is a curator and choreographer living and working in New York. She currently serves as the Senior Program Manager at Open Society Foundations for the Arts Exchange, an experimental campaign to mainstream arts for social justice within the foundations globally. Previously, Bumbray was the Director of Artistic Affairs at Duke Ellington School of the Arts in Washington D.C. From 2012-2014, Bumbray was guest curator at Creative Time for the public art exhibition Funk, God, Jazz and Medicine: Black Radical Brooklyn (2014). From 2006 to 2011, Bumbray served as Associate Curator at The Kitchen, where she organized several critically acclaimed projects and commissions, including solo exhibitions by Leslie Hewitt, Simone Leigh, Adam Pendleton, and Mai Thu Perret as well as performances by Derrick Adams, Sanford Biggers, Kalup Linzy, and Mendi & Keith Obadike among others.
Sharifa Rhodes-Pitts is the author of "Harlem Is Nowhere: A Journey to the Mecca of Black America". The first volume of a planned trilogy on African-Americans and utopia (Harlem, Haiti and the Black Belt of the American south), it was a New York Times Notable Book of 2011, a National Book Critics Circle Finalist and cited by BOOKFORUM as the "Best New York Book" written in the twenty years since the magazine's founding. Her work has appeared in The New York Times, The Nation, Chimurenga, Bidoun, A Public Space, Creative Time Reports, Harper's, Essence and Vogue, among many others. She has received grants and awards from Creative Capital, the Whiting Foundation, the Rona Jaffe Foundation and the Lannan Foundation. Her 2015 book for young readers "Jake Makes a World: Jacob Lawrence a Young Artist in Harlem" (commissioned by MoMA and illustrated by Christopher Myers) was named by Booklist among the year's top books about art for children. Rhodes-Pitts organizes projects through The Freedwomen's Bureau, gathering collaborators across the fields of visual art, music, theater, film, and education to produce events at venues like Harlem Stage, The Studio Museum in Harlem, The New Museum, PS 1 / MoMA and public spaces in Harlem. She is currently Writer-in-Residence at Pratt Institute's Writing M.F.A, and has also taught at Columbia and Barnard.