Sankofa City Summer School
What will the South Side of Chicago look like in 2021? As we anticipate the construction of the Obama Presidential Center, this workshop series brings South Side residents and University of Chicago students together to visualize our desired futures for our community.
Initiated in 2017 through the collaborative guidance of filmmaker Ben R. Caldwell (Los Angeles) and University of Chicago film scholar, and Gray Center Director Jacqueline Stewart, the Sankofa City Summer School has been established as an ongoing Gray Center program, with its second iteration coming in the summer of 2018. See below for an archive of past associated events.
Cinema 53: Sankofa with Haile Gerima and Shirikiana Aina
Screening of Sankofa, followed by conversation with Haile Gerima and Shirikiana Aina
Powerful, moving and highly acclaimed, director Haile Gerima and producer Shirikiana Aina’s Sankofa (1993) is a masterpiece of cinema that continues to have a transformative impact. The film tells a story of slavery and the African Diaspora from the perspective of the enslaved, challenging the romanticizing of slavery prevalent in American culture.
Part one of two nights of film + conversation presented as part of Sankofa City Summer School, convened and moderated by Ben Caldwell and Jacqueline Stewart
Cinema 53: Brick by Brick with Shirikiana Aina and Haile Gerima
Screening of Brick by Brick (1982), followed by conversation with Shirikiana Aina and Haile Gerima.
Director Shirikiana Aina’s prescient portrait of late-1970s Washington, D.C., chronicling the city’s creeping gentrification, the systematic expulsion of poor Black residents, and the community response in the form of the Seaton Street Project, in which tenants banded together to purchase buildings.
Part two of two nights of film + conversation presented as part of Sankofa City Summer School, convened and moderated by Ben Caldwell and Jacqueline Stewart
Sankofa City Summer School 2018
As we anticipate the construction of the Obama Presidential Center, and increasing interest in the surrounding neighborhoods, this design + prototyping workshop brings South Side residents and University of Chicago students together to visualize desired futures for our community. Workshop led by legendary filmmaker, entrepreneur and activist Ben Caldwell (Kaos Network, Los Angeles) and UChicago film scholar Jacqueline Stewart (Gray Center; Cinema 53; South Side Home Movie Project).
Sankofa City Summer School: Proposals for Our Future -- Video Screening/Community Conversation/Reception
Participants in Sankofa City Summer School: South Side Design Fiction Workshop present their visions for the future of our neighborhood, in the form of speculative design videos and objects that imagine new possibilities for public spaces.