This Saturday, May 21, Black Love Fest, a celebration of African American art, culture, and activism, will be coming to the New Orleans African American Museum! The event, starting at 1:00 p.m. and going till 6:00 p.m., will be hosted by The Black School for their fourth annual art and music festival, dedicated to self-love and support within the Black community.
The Black School, founded in 2016 in New York City, partners with youth organizations and schools across the United States to reach out to students in Black communities. The Black School aims to educate youths on self-love and solidarity with their community, all through the act of creating and sharing art among one another. Artist and cofounder of the initiative, Joseph Cuilllier says about The Black School, "We're going to the youth and telling them, 'The knowledge you have is valuable, and it can be used to help [your] community.'"
Since the conception of The Black School, the greater goal of the program has been to unify African American people as one body, that is dedicated to collective, rather than individual, action. Because of this, beginning in 2017, the school has hosted the Black Love Fest annually, prior to the pandemic, and this year, they will be bringing it back, with a kickoff in the city of New Orleans!
Originally, the festival began in New York City as an opportunity to share the key principles that students had learned over the course of the year under the teachings of The Black School, with their art being the focal point of the celebration. Since then, Black Love Fest has become a greater community-wide festivity, honoring self-love, value, and solidarity in the Black community, with students at The Black School's art and music still being the centerpiece.
This year, entrance to Black Love Fest in New Orleans is free to the public, and The Black School invites all who support and love Black people and culture. The event will feature a musical performance by Grammy-award nominee and New Orleans' born trumpeter, Christian Scott, with additional musical guests, including DJ Kelly Green, Big 6 Brass Band, Gladney, Charm Taylor, and Davion Farris. Along with music, art installations, and workshops, Black Love Fest will offer a range of activities, including yoga and face painting, among many others. Food and merchandise vendors will be around for your convenience, and people and families are invited to come and enjoy the more than welcoming atmosphere. To learn more and register for Black Love Fest, feel free to check out the event!