This intermediate video production course imagines the past, present and future of black lives at Bennington College. Through archival work on the history of the Black Music Division, research into contemporary issues of race on campus and speculative explorations of the future of these issues and the aesthetic problems they pose, students will work collaboratively to realize a substantial video project by the end of the term. Historical, theoretical and experiential research will inform our formal explorations of blackness in lighting, cinematography, performance and duration. Our work in moving image will intersect with black music, black dance and other forms of creative expression. Together we will explore the history of black collectivity, use this history to put pressure on the present and to imagine possible futures. The collaborative work from this course will be featured in an exhibition in the Usdan Gallery in the Spring of 2017, contextualized by the research that we undertake.
Black Studies: Black Film Division (First 7 Wednesdays 6:30pm – 9:30pm) is a 2-credit corequisite and students are also strongly encouraged to take Michael Wimberly’s Black Studies: Black Music Division (Second 7 Wednesdays 6:30pm – 9:30pm) as well.
“Is it not also a fact that some can see the inclusion of Black music as a division as a possible precedent for a black art division, a black drama division, a black dance division, etc.?” – Bill Dixon, Bennington College Faculty Member in his 1974 Statement of Intent for the Black Music Division