Summer of Soul Redux?

Summer Of Soul (… Or When the Revolution Could Not Be Televised), the Ahmir “Questlove” Thompson-directed film that won the Oscar and the Grammy for documenting 1969’s now-famed Harlem Cultural Festival, has inspired a reboot of the landmark music event.

Ambassador Digital Magazine editor-in-chief Musa Jackson, who attended the 1969 event and appeared in Summer of Soul, said Tuesday that he, BNP Advisory Group strategist Nikoa Evans and event producer and Captivate Marketing Group president Yvonne McNair are teaming to launch the Harlem Festival of Culture in the summer of 2023.

The multi-day outdoor concert event will be a reimagining of the 1969 fest and take place in Harlem’s Marcus Garvey Park, where the original took place when it was known as Mount Morris Park. Official dates have not yet been announced.

“The original event was truly a once-in-a-lifetime experience, one that I will never forget,” Jackson told Billboard. “With this initiative, we want to create something that evokes that same sense of pride in our community that I felt on that special day in 1969. We want to authentically encapsulate the full scope: the energy, the music, the culture. We want people to understand that this festival is being built by the people who are from, live and work in this community.”

Photography at the Schomburg

Make sure to check out Been/Seen – an exhibit of historical and contemporary photography at the Schomburg Library Gallery – on display now.

This exhibit juxtaposes classic images in the Schomburg’s collection with new work.

Compost Project Launch

May 14th at 3:00 PM

Abyssinian Tot Lot at 130 West 139th Street

MMPCIA Meeting on Tuesday

Join MMPCIA on Tuesday at 6:00 PM

Here’s the link:

https://us02web.zoom.us/j/86847234917

The Marcelle

One of the big disappointments of American aesthetic trends is that this country never caught Art Nouveau fever in the late 19th century. Yes, we have Tiffany, but any keen observer in NYC is hard-pressed to list more than a handful of Art Nouveau treasures in the 5 boroughs.

Here in Harlem, where so much of the cityscape was built during peak Art Nouveau in Europe, it’s rare to find even a touch of the organic design style.

All of this is to say that The Marcelle – at 2013 5th Avenue – is a rara avis, a brownstone with a subtle Art Nouveau twist.

If you take a careful look at the brownstone work above the central arch, you’ll see a beautiful rendering of AD 1888, but also the name of the building, in fluid/organic font.

What many may miss, however, is that what appears to be rusticated stone surrounding the date and name, is not actually rusticated stone. It’s a very subtle bas relief of olives and olive branches – often a symbol of fecundity, the harvest, and riches.

Take a look sometime, just north of Marcus Garvey Park, and see if you can make out the olives and olive branches.

Today: Mexican Muralism and its American Impact

Panel Discussion with Q&A
The American Academy of Arts and Letters
633 West 155th Street
Friday, January 28, 10 am
To attend in person, register via Eventbrite

To view the presentation LIVE on ZOOM, register via Drawing America

Unveiling the gift of José Clemente Orozco drawings from Michael and Salma Wornick to the Hispanic Society. Film still provided by Savona Bailey-McClain, West Harlem Art Fund.

A panel discussion led by Savona Bailey-McClain, Executive Director and Chief Curator of the West Harlem Art Fund. Panelists include:

  • Esther Adler, Associate Curator, Department of Drawings and Prints, MoMA
  • Leon Tovar, Principal, Leon Tovar Gallery, NYC
  • Dr. Orlando Hernández-Ying, Rockefeller Brothers Fund Curatorial Research Fellow for the Hubert & Mireille Goldschmidt Works on Paper Fellowship, Hispanic Society Museum & Library
  • With remarks from: Dr. Marcus B. Burke, Senior Curator, Paintings, Drawings, and Metalworks, Hispanic Society Museum & Library

War dominated the late 19th and early 20th centuries in Europe. New political ideologies — socialism and communism, also added tensions. Art responded by turning its focus onto the common man and woman in natural and urban environments.

The Americas were impacted as well with cries for change. In Mexico, a ten-year revolution offered an opportunity for Mexico to acknowledge its pre-Hispanic past with a new blended population. Art became the medium to spark emotions and share with pride epic tales of how this blended world was to take shape.

The Mexican Muralism Movement embraced European traditions of drawing and frescoes with social realism and new aesthetics that swept into North America. Our panel will discuss these impacts and the artists whose mark still moves us today.

To view the presentation LIVE via ZOOM, Please register via Drawing America

Candlelight Vigil

Dr. Keith Taylor, a neighbor and friend writes:

Neighbors,
If you are able, I ask you to attend a community candlelight vigil at the 32nd Precinct tonight at 6:30 pm to show support for our officers at a time of great loss to the NYPD and to the Harlem community. Your presence will mean a tremendous amount to the officers and to me. As a volunteer NYPD community liaison, I regularly speak to rookie officers as they get assigned to the 32 Precinct about the Harlem community as well as lessons learned from my 23 years in the NYPD. We have lost one of our best, Officer Jason Rivera, and another officer, Wilbert Mora, is fighting for his life as I write this to you. Thank you for sharing this with our community.
Sincerely,
Keith

Art In The Park

Earlier, in the fall, we attended a reception for the sculpture Renaissance Women that was located in Marcus Garvey Park, in front of the pool entrance. The artist, Alice Mizrachi (pictured above) was on hand to answer questions, pose in front of her work, and help with a fun participatory art project.

If you’re in the park, make sure to stroll past and check out her hand-forged steel piece.

We Still Here

The Silent Procession (NYC4PR) is co-sponsoring a documentary film (fundraiser) on February 24th.

The documentary examines how in the absence of federal support from the previous administration, Puerto Rican communities were forced to rescue themselves in the aftermath of Hurricane Maria.

https://WeStillHereScreening.eventcombo.com

Mass Transit – 1837

The New York and Harlem Railroad was the first public streetcar service – mass transit – in New York City. The first line of horse-drawn carriages traveled from Prince Street to the Harlem Bridge on 4th Avenue (Park Avenue), reaching Harlem in 1837.

Below is an image of the early depot that serviced the horse-drawn streetcars.

Among the company’s founders was John Mason, a wealthy banker and president of Chemical Bank who was among the largest landowners in New York City. They decided to build their railroad on the eastern side of Manhattan Island, convinced that it would never be able to compete with steamboat traffic on the Hudson River.

The New York and Harlem Railroad eventually became the New York Central Railroad and then the Metro North we know today.

A train at about 103rd Street, headed south and about to go into the Park Avenue tunnel. You can just make out Marcus Garvey Park in the haze, above the last cars of the train.

4th Avenue (Park Avenue) presented a challenge with the drop from Yorkville down to East Harlem, so initially a trestle was built of wood – eventually to be replaced by the masonry structure we know today (98th Street to 111th Street). Beyond that is an increasingly fragile iron and steel structure that extends to the Harlem River (Metro North) Bridge.

You can see the 1950 film, here:

that shows a train coming into New York City, crossing the Harlem River, then going through East Harlem, and eventually entering the Park Avenue Tunnel.

New York Health and Hospitals Wants Your Feedback

The Harlem Community Advisory Board’s 2022 Annual Public Meeting

Wednesday, January 19, 2022

5:00pm Live via Webex

All are welcome to join. For more information, please call (212) 939-1369

HNBA Meeting on Tuesday, 7:00 PM

Join HNBA next week, on Tuesday the 14th, for our annual December/Holiday meeting.

Are you ready for holiday cooking with a twist of funny? 

Join stand-up comedian and host of the cooking/comedy show Dinner’s Ready Live (IGTV/YoutubeTV) for a night of fun cooking and big laughs. Dan will be teaching us how to make Spaghetti Carbonara from the refrigerator to the plate using simple ingredients. We encourage you to cook and laugh along! Here are the ingredients:

SPAGHETTI CARBONARA

  • 1 BOX SPAGHETTI
  • 2 LARGE EGGS
  • 1/2 CUP PARMESAN CHEESE
  • 4 SLICES BACON (can use turkey bacon too)
  • 4 CLOVES GARLIC
  • 1/2 CUP PEAS
  • SALT/PEPPER TO TASTE

UTENSILS

  • 2 LARGE PANS/SKILLETS (FOR BACON/FOR SAUCE)
  • LARGE POT (FOR PASTA)
  • KNIFE (FOR GARLIC)
  • TONGS (FOR TOSSING PASTA AND SAUCE)

We’ll also be joined by comedian Ryan Brown who will join us for Carbonara trivia!

If you’re vegetarian, leave off the Bacon. But don’t leave off your sense of humor and good cheer!  See you from the kitchen!

Holiday Tree Lighting

IT MIGHT BE SNOWING OR RAINING BUT WE WILL BE LIGHTING OUR LIVING CHRISTMAS TREE AND THEN CONTINUING THE HOLIDAY CELEBRATION INSIDE. PLEASE DROP BY

We Are Lighting The Tree @ 6 pm (Near The Pool)

THE PROGRAM WILL CONTINUE INSIDE

Greater Calvary Baptist Church

(Across The Street From Park) 43-55 124th Street

FEATURING: Dancer/Choreographer Du’Bois Akeen

Holiday Songs Of Praise by Pastor Terrence L. Kennedy and The Reach Music Ministry
State Senator Cordell Cleare Coming & Councilmember Elect Kristin Jordan Richardson Invited
Masks Required

Grab and Go Refreshments

Marcus Garvey Park Tree Lighting

December 8th, at 6:00 PM.

124th Street and 5th Avenue.

Join the Marcus Garvey Park Alliance in the lighting of the holiday tree.

Under the Stoops

Along 5th Avenue, between 129/128th Streets, there are 3 brownstones in a row that still have grills that allow light into the under-the-stoop space.

As a result, you can see 3 houses through and during the day, illumination is unnecessary.

Let’s Work Towards Carbon Neutrality

NYC Accelerator is a free program through the Mayor’s Office of Sustainability committed to restoring NYC and its buildings. The Accelerator team experts work with building representatives to improve building’s energy and water efficiency through building upgrades which create healthier buildings, save owners and residents money on their utility bills, and improve local air quality. 

The program is looking to connect with small, multi-family building owners in Harlem so that NYC can reach its goal of becoming carbon neutral by 2050. We recognize the importance of The Harlem Neighborhood Block Association in Harlem and admire your dedication to your community. We would like to partner with your organization, at no cost to you, to educate building owners and residents in your community how they can improve their buildings utilizing funding from many local and state programs to boost their building’s energy performance while reducing carbon emissions, and ensuring healthier, cleaner air for Harlem residents.

Jazmine Espeut

Community Coordinator

P: 212.656.9198

E: [email protected]

A Holiday in Harlem (Well, actually Hartford, CT…)

https://www.tvinsider.com/1019784/hallmark-a-holiday-in-harlem-olivia-washington-will-adams/

Soul Train Tomorrow!

Head to Marcus Garvey Park on Saturday to celebrate the 50th Anniversary of Soul Train and BET’s attempt to break a world record with the longest one ever.

Our Meeting with Mark Levine and The NYC Accelerator Program

We had a great meeting on October 12th with Mark Levine. If you missed it, and want to learn more about his vision for Manhattan (or learn more about the NYC Accelerator Program), please see:

https://us02web.zoom.us/rec/share/LnBjqZRkp1nXyRTjfaF5yuyCuIoxrrbeOHl-kUbX4abvxDw6JW3zr2oLUT5zydHm.aroNP0XIaqdeL4cQ 

Passcode: 5Rn^1!L#

Sculpture in Marcus Garvey Park

On view through October 1, 2022, Thomas J Price: Witness celebrates a familiar everyday form rarely monumentalized within a public setting. In the artist’s words, “I want to interrogate [notions of] presence, movement, and freedom. Who do these spaces belong to? And what bodies are provided more or less autonomy to move with liberty through public [space]?” 

Thomas J Price: Witness is presented as part of The Studio Museum in Harlem’s series of collaborative initiatives, inHarlem, which are being undertaken while the Museum is preparing for the construction of its new building.

Stop by Marcus Garvey Park starting this October and view this monumental work. 

Traveling While Black

Make sure to visit the Schomburg Library before the end of the year to see the fantastic exhibit “Traveling While Black”. The Director, Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture, Kevin Young notes:

Since the start of their experience in the Americas, Black people have been defined by travel, displacement, and resistance. 

Whether in the horrors of the Middle Passage or the rebellion of Maroon communities made up of escaped slaves, travel has meant much—and something much more—for Africans in the Americas. This exhibition, our first as we celebrate The New York Public Library’s 125th anniversary and the Schomburg Center’s 95th, explores over a century of travel. Moving from the Great Migration of African Americans north and west at the start of the twentieth century to the restrictions and resistances of travel in the Jim Crow South and the Jane Crow North, Traveling While Black examines a history of travel, from those who found themselves exiles within their own country down to the pilgrims and pleasure seekers of our time. 

War marks many of the peregrinations of the last century, often offering African American soldiers their first glimpse of other cultures beyond the United States. They returned with a new energy and renewed hope, whether in the offerings of jazz after the Great War, or the opportunities abroad for expatriates after World War II. The freedom that African Americans sought at home and fought for abroad they often found in travel. Returning Black officers and recruits started motorcycle clubs and organized tour groups, traditions that continue today. The somewhat open road and the mostly great outdoors provided Black sojourners with literal and emotional vistas to revel in. 

While confronting restrictions from Jim Crow laws and surveillance by would-be law enforcement agencies stateside, everyday travel meant obeying unspoken rules of the road. Domestic journeys involved ingenuity, often employing the Green Book, that guide for Black travelers developed in Harlem by Victor Green. Carry your Green Book with you…you may need it! reads one tagline for the guides. The Schomburg Center retains the largest and most complete collection of Green Books in the world; in many cases we hold the only known copy. But as any number of African American guidebooks found here indicate, from runaways to resorts, the idea of escape has had larger resonances for Black culture. Questions surrounding Black bodies in motion—whether driving, walking, or traveling while Black—still persist, asking us to consider the meaning of migration, movement, and freedom. 

—Kevin Young

It’s My Park Day