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VMFA to exhibit “Working Together: Louis Draper and the Kamoinge Workshop” beginning in February

On display in Evans Court Gallery from Feb. 1 to June 14, 2020, the exhibition features nearly 180 photographs by fifteen of the early members of the Kamoinge Workshop. Working Together tells the story of the first two decades of this collective of artists, who expanded the boundaries of photography as an art form during a critical era of Black self-determination in the 1960s and 1970s.

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Beginning this February, the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts will highlight the work of a remarkable group of African American photographers in the exhibition Working Together: Louis Draper and the Kamoinge Workshop. On display in Evans Court Gallery from Feb. 1 to June 14, 2020, the exhibition features nearly 180 photographs by fifteen of the early members of the Kamoinge Workshop. Working Together tells the story of the first two decades of this collective of artists, who expanded the boundaries of photography as an art form during a critical era of Black self-determination in the 1960s and 1970s. This free exhibition is curated by Dr. Sarah Eckhardt, VMFA’s Associate Curator of Modern and Contemporary Art.

The exhibition has local roots through Louis Draper (1935–2002), who was born in Henrico County and attended the Virginia Randolph School and Virginia State College (now University) before moving to New York in 1957. It was there that Draper met other African American photographers, and in 1963 they came together to form the Kamoinge Workshop. The word Kamoinge means “a group of people acting and working together” in Gikuyu, the language of the Kikuyu people of Kenya. The collective met weekly to look at each other’s work, support one another, and organize their own exhibitions. They were also the driving force behind the Black Photographers Annual, a publication that featured the work of black photographers at a time when mainstream publications offered few opportunities for African Americans. Besides Draper, the early Kamoinge members represented in this exhibition are Anthony Barboza, Adger Cowans, Danny Dawson, Roy DeCarava, Al Fennar, Ray Francis, Herman Howard, Jimmie Mannas, Herb Randall, Herb Robinson, Beuford Smith, Ming Smith, Shawn Walker and Calvin Wilson.

Planning for this exhibition began in 2015 when the museum acquired Draper’s complete archive from his sister, Nell Draper-Winston. The archive consists of more than 50,000 items, including photographs, negatives, contact sheets, slides, computer disks, audiovisual materials, and camera equipment, as well as 15 boxes of valuable documents and publications, which include significant materials about the formation and early years of the Kamoinge Workshop. Thanks to a generous grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities, the Draper archive is now completely catalogued, digitized and will be available on the museum’s website before the exhibition opens. VMFA also received a grant from Bank of America to conserve, stabilize and digitize works in its collection of Kamoinge photographs.

“The Virginia Museum of Fine Arts is proud to house the archive of this talented Richmond photographer as well as the most extensive collection of photographs by early members of the Kamoinge Workshop,” said VMFA Director Alex Nyerges. “Our hope is that visitors will learn more about this collective of photographers and experience the beautiful images they created during a time when works by African American artists were marginalized or ignored.”

“When I first had the privilege of looking at Draper’s photographs and began reading his descriptions of the collective’s purpose, I realized this story was of national significance—both art historically and politically,” said Eckhardt.

Eckhardt pointed to a quote by Draper from the VMFA archive that underscores the significance of the African American collective that formed at the height of the civil rights movement and is still active today: “Cognizant of the forces for change revolving around Kamoinge, we dedicated ourselves to speak of our lives as only we can,” Draper wrote. “This was our story to tell and we set out to create the kind of images of our communities that spoke of the truth we’d witnessed and that countered the untruth we’d all seen in mainline publications.”

The exhibition is accompanied by a 304-page illustrated catalogue by Eckhardt, which includes a preface by Deborah Willis and additional essays by Erina Duganne, Romi Crawford, John Edwin Mason and Bill Gaskins. After the exhibition closes at VMFA it will travel to the Whitney Museum of American Art in New York and two additional museum venues in the United States.

Learn more about the exhibit here.

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Three Sheets to the Wind playing drive-in concert at City Stadium June 13th

Enjoy smooth ’70s and ’80s yacht rock from Three Sheets to the Wind on June 13th at City Stadium – in the comfort and safety of your own vehicle.

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Yacht rock tribute band Three Sheets to the Wind, known for their smooth and sultry soft rock vocals and ’70s and ’80s covers, will play a drive-in concert in collaboration with The Broadberry in the parking lot of City Stadium June 13th, it was announced this past weekend.

Tickets, which went on sale this morning, are good for up to four people in one vehicle. In order to maintain social distancing, no one will be allowed outside of their vehicles except to use the restroom at portable toilets, which will be on-site and cleaned often.

Audio from the show will be broadcast live via a lower power FM transmitter to those in attendance.

Learn more and purchase tickets here.

Rules and regulations from The Broadberry staff follow below.

𝐈𝐌𝐏𝐎𝐑𝐓𝐀𝐍𝐓 𝐑𝐔𝐋𝐄𝐒 & 𝐑𝐄𝐆𝐔𝐋𝐀𝐓𝐈𝐎𝐍𝐒 In order to provide the safest and best Drive-In Concert Experience, we require each participant to observe the following rules:

1. If you are sick, running a fever or have been exposed to COVID-19, please stay home until you are healthy.
2. For the safety of yourself and others, you should ONLY attend this event with people in your immediate quarantine circle.
3. Tickets can be purchased online only, there will be no box office onsite.
4. All attendees must arrive within a vehicle that is two axles and holding a maximum of 4 people, including children. No campers, motorcycles, buses, or extremely large vehicles will be admitted. No jeeps without doors or convertibles with tops down. No vehicles towing trailers will be admitted.
5. Absolutely no sitting on your car, standing on your car or exiting the vehicle before, after or during the event. NO LAWN OR CAMPING CHAIRS PERMITTED! NO SITTING IN THE BED OF A PICKUP TRUCK.
6. There is absolutely no leaving your vehicle unless there is an essential need, i.e. bathroom breaks. If you must leave your car to use the restroom – WEAR A MASK.
7. Portable toilets will be available on site. Strict guidelines will be provided to ensure safety and cleanliness. Gloves and sanitizer will be available for use.
8. Absolutely no standing outside of the venue or gatherings on the sidewalks of the venue will be allowed and will be enforced by security.
9. Emergency communication options will be provided both in advance of the event as well as upon arrival to the concert.
10. For the safety of concertgoers directly adjacent to your vehicle, refrain from rolling down your car windows more than two inches from the top.
11. Food can be brought from home and eaten in your vehicle. Please only dispose of trash in proper receptacles or bring all trash back home. Please don’t litter!
12. At the conclusion of the concert, please remain in your parking space until directed by event staff to exit the lot. In the case of an emergency, please remain in your space until directed by event staff. Drive slowly and follow all directions.
13. The parking lot will open one hour prior to the start of the show. We suggest arriving early — parking is first-come-first serve.
14. All audio will be streamed via FM transmitter. Please make sure to arrive with a working FM radio in your vehicle or you will not be able to listen to the show. Portable boomboxes and stereos are permissible for vehicles without a functional car stereo.
15. Absolutely no alcohol and/or illegal substances will be permitted at the event or inside your vehicle and violators will be held accountable and prosecuted by state and federal law.
16. No pets are allowed.
17. Absolutely no illicit goods, no fireworks, weapons or guns, knives or laser pointers.
18. Drivers caught concealing other persons or items in their vehicle will be turned away or asked to leave without a refund. All vehicles subject to search.
19. Big trucks and SUVS may be directed to the back of the lot so as to not block the sightlines of other concert-goers.
20. No refund requests or ticket transfers will be granted. This event is rain or shine.

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Byrd Theatre curates “Cinematheque Virtuelle” French film series

Knowing how many people missed seeing the French Film Festival in March and look forward to March 2021, the programming committee saw an opportunity to bring a little “Je ne sais quoi” to the Byrd Theatre’s virtual screening room.

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The Byrd Theatre’s virtual movie series continues with an all-new theme. Cinematheque Virtuelle is the Byrd Theatre’s newest virtual series. Knowing how many people missed seeing the French Film Festival in March and look forward to March 2021, the programming committee saw an opportunity to bring a little “Je ne sais quoi” to the Byrd Theatre’s virtual screening room.

Many of the films are new releases and others are new to being available for screening. The Alliance Francaise Richmond has graciously partnered with the Byrd Theatre to bring this French Film Series to life.

Cinematheque Virtuelle French Film Series opens May 27th, 2020 with “On a Magical Night” and opens 2 films on Thursday, Friday, and Saturday and additional film each day through June 2nd. The complete series will run through June 9th.

Films:

May 27

On a Magical Night, French Rom-Com

May 28

New French Shorts 2020, a collection of short films

The Perfect Nanny, From Rendezvous with French Cinema 2020/Acclaimed Thriller

May 29

Papicha, Cannes Film Festival and Cesar-Award Winning Drama

Deerskin, Black Comedy/Thriller

May 30

Someone Somewhere, From Rendezvous with French Cinema 2020/Acclaimed Indie Drama

Alice, South By Southwest Grand Jury Prize Winner

May 31

Tezzeka, Comedy/Drama for Moroccan/French Cuisine Foodies

June 1

Rififi (1955), Classic: French Film Noir

June 2

Band of Outsiders (1964), Classic: Godard’s Unofficial Sequel to Breathless

The Byrd Theatre launched the Virtual Screening Room in March and has been looking for interesting films to share with its patrons. The screening room allows people to rent the films, view from the comfort of their own home during Virginia’s Stay at Home order, and help the Byrd Theatre monetarily. The individual distribution companies are splitting the net revenues from rentals with the Byrd Theatre. Win-Win.

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Dominion Energy Riverrock announces Virtual Experience with virtual trail events, streaming content to celebrate 2020 festival

“Even though we can’t gather along the James River at our wonderful downtown waterfront, we still want to celebrate Richmond’s vibrant active-living community,” said Megan Schultz, Director of Events for Sports Backers, co-organizers of Dominion Energy Riverrock with Venture Richmond.

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Dominion Energy Riverrock is planning its first Virtual Experience to bring the sights and sounds of the festival, which was originally scheduled for May 15-17 before its cancellation due to the COVID-19 outbreak and associated restrictions on large events, directly to viewers and participants. The Virtual Experience will include trail running and mountain bike events for participants to take part in virtually on their own before enjoying the streaming festival highlights show on Saturday, May 16, at 5 p.m.

The virtual races will encourage participants to bring the celebratory spirit home to them. Participants can choose 5k, 10k, or Half Marathon trail running distances, or 10-mile or 20-mile mountain bike distances, then select their own course and complete their race any time before May 31. Participants can also upload and compare their times on an online leaderboard. Virtual event registration is now open at www.riverrockrva.com, and the registration fee of $20 includes a Dominion Energy Riverrock trucker hat with an event entry. As part of the celebration, festival organizers are also hosting a drawing for a prize pack featuring items from event partners including YETI, Sierra Nevada, ENO, nuun, Virginia Lottery, and Capital One, among others. No purchase is necessary to win the prize pack and anyone aged 21 and over can enter to win here.

“Even though we can’t gather along the James River at our wonderful downtown waterfront, we still want to celebrate Richmond’s vibrant active-living community,” said Megan Schultz, Director of Events for Sports Backers, co-organizers of Dominion Energy Riverrock with Venture Richmond. “We believe that the Virtual Experience will be a great way for Dominion Energy Riverrock enthusiasts to engage with the things that make the festival so unique and exciting.”

The streaming highlights show will feature music from several artists originally scheduled to perform during the 2020 Dominion Energy Riverrock, including the Delvon Lamarr Organ Trio, The Hot Seats, and The Northerners, as well as interviews with Dominion Energy Riverrock athletes, demos on mountain biking, slacklining, kayak, and bouldering, and plenty of other festival-related content. The livestream will premiere at 5 p.m. on May 16 on the Dominion Energy Riverrock YouTube channel (http://www.youtube.com/DominionRiverrock/live) and on Facebook Live (www.facebook.com/riverrockRVA/), and be available for on-demand streaming immediately after. A trailer for the special can be viewed at the Dominion Energy Riverrock Instagram page, @RiverrockRVA.

“We know that Dominion Energy Riverrock is one of the most anticipated weekends of the year in Richmond, so it’s important for us to bring the spirit of the festival to our dedicated community with this Virtual Experience,” said Lisa Sims, CEO of Venture Richmond. “We especially would like to thank Dominion Energy for their support to bring this concept to reality so we can all take part in the festival in our own way.”

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