Friday, July 6th, 2012 – Passport Fridays at Queens Museum of The Arts: Haiti

I’m excited to announce that the next Visionaries event will open this summer’s Queens Museum of Art’s Target Passport Fridays series.  As part of the city-wide exhibit Caribbean Crossroads of the World, each Friday this summer will feature a different Caribbean country.  Visionaries will be kicking off this great series on Friday July 6th with an evening devoted to dance, music and film from Haiti featuring Ase Dance Theatre CollectiveDJA-Rara and the film, When the Drum is Beating. Events start at 6:30pm.  See below for more details.

Target Passport Fridays: Haiti Friday, July 6th, 6:30 P.M. – 10 P.M., 2012 Queens Museum of Art, NYC Bldg, Flushing Meadows Park, Queens, NY 11369 DIRECTIONS  Free and Open to the public Co-presenting with Visionaries, a nomadic series bringing together artists and organizations with a common mission. The series is founded by Jennifer Pritheeva Samuel. Stay connected @NYCVisionaries.

DANCE: ASE Dance Theatre Collective Under the artistic directions of its founder, Adia Tamar Whitaker, a dancer/choreographer and vocalist, this Brooklyn based dance theater collective is dedicated to preserving the past, present, and future of the African presence in the “New World.” They will present contemporary choreography inspired by Haitian  folklore and rhythms.


MUSIC: DJA-Rara takes an ancient music from the hills of Haiti and reinvents  it on the streets of Brooklyn. Part-carnival, part-vodou ceremony, and grassroots protest, “Rara” is one of the most breathtaking and contested forms of music in the Americas. Rara originally served as a voice of the slaves in their revolt against the French, and as the voice of those struggling against ongoing dictatorships in Haiti.

FILM: When The Drum Is Beating (Whitney Dow, USA/Haiti, 84min, 2011, English & Kreyol with English ST) documents the Haitian band, Septentrional. For 60 years this 20 piece band has been making beautiful music – a fusion of Cuban big band and Haitian vodou beats – that turns out thousands of fans. Their extraordinary story is interwoven with the history of Haiti and how it went from being the first free black republic with a huge wealth of natural resources to a shattered country that cannot support its citizens.

For more info visit: or call 718-592-9700

Join the conversation |@QueensMuseumEsp|#PassportFridays

Target Passport Fridays 2012 at the Queens Museum of Art is made possible by Target. Target Passport Fridays 2012 is presented in partnership with Rooftop Films and NYC & Company. Additional support provided by The Kresge Foundation, the New York CityDepartment of Cultural Affairs, the New York State Council on the Arts, and Astoria Federal Savings. WNYC is a media partner of the Queens Museum of Art.  

Summer 2012 Photography Assignment: Your Block

I’d like to revive the summer photography assignment, something we did when I was co-organizing the Brooklyn Photo Salon.  This summer’s assignment: YOUR BLOCK.  I chose this assignment because it’s close by (no excuses!) and if you’re like me, it’s something you’ve been meaning to focus on for awhile – who and what we see everyday are often easiest to overlook.  Plus every good photo project needs to push you just a little outside of your comfort zone 😉

Everyone is free to participate in this assignment – from amateur to professional photographers.  I chose photography not only because it is my first love but because it’s very accessible to everyone these days.  You can use your iPhone, your DSLR or your large format film camera – but use it well.  By the end of the summer you should think about  selecting 10-20 images that make up a cohesive photo essay.  We’ll gather in the fall to look at everyone’s images.  If you are posting photos online throughout the summer, tag us (@nycvisionaries) in them so we can follow you along in your journey.

Email me at if you have questions.

Happy shooting!