Exploring Segregation in American Public Schools
On June 24th, Smack Mellon will present the second Race and Revolution exhibition in a series that utilizes a combination of contemporary artworks and historical documents as a platform to examine patterns of systemic racism in the United States. This edition, entitled Race and Revolution: Still Separate - Still Unequal, investigates the prevalence of segregation in the United States public school system.
Since the inception of #BlackLivesMatter in 2012, the American population is reflecting on what happened after the Civil Rights Movement of the 1950s-60s. That word “after” is part of the conundrum that surrounds our present-day conversation around race and racism. What exactly came to an end? The exhibition Still Separate - Still Unequal seeks to examine ongoing racial and economic disparity in the U.S. public school system. Reports in 2014, the year that marked the sixtieth anniversary of the Supreme Court’s Brown V. Board of Education decision declaring segregated schools as unconstitutional, showed an increase in school segregation. How has this happened, and how can we use art to push the conversation into the public discourse in a new and provocative way?
The practice of segregating students by class, race, and “aptitude” in the interest of creating a “better” learning environment has produced a systemic crisis that reverberates within the education system across the United States. This has resulted in the creation of a preponderance of controversial policies that adversely impact students and teachers. This summer, seventeen artists, many of whom teach in New York City public schools, offer their perspectives on the enduring legacy of racial and economic school segregation in the United States.
Saturday, June 24, 7pm Poetry Performance by Kayla Muldrow
Thursday, June 29, 6-8pm: School Segregation – A roundtable discussion with Kyle Spencer
Wednesday, July 19, 6-8pm: Restorative Justice Workshop with Morningside Center for Teaching Social Responsibility
Wednesday, July 26, 6-8pm: Teaching Artist Roundtable with Kameelah Janan Rasheed, Michael Paul Britto,, Uraline Hager, Clare Kambu, JC Lenochan and Shaun Leonardo
Thursday, August 3, 7-9pm: Dominique Duroseau Performance - “A Rap on Race with Rice.”
Saturday, August 5, 12- 2pm: Workshop with Dennis Redmoon Darkeem