People’s University at the DC Public Library presents

Soul Tent

Flier for Courtney Dowe performance, 2018 (design by Joshua Gamma)

Flier for Courtney Dowe performance, 2018 (design by Joshua Gamma)

During the summer of 2018, I had an internship at the DC Public Library assisting curator Nicholas Petr with curatorial planning, artist relations, design, and marketing of the Soul Tent project. The project commemorated the 50th anniversary of the 1968 Poor People’s Campaign and drew connections to the revived New Poor People’s Campaign.

From the DC Public Library

On May 12, 1968 the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s Poor People’s Campaign arrived in Washington, D.C. Nearly 6,000 people descended on the National Mall and the 40-day encampment came to be known as Resurrection City. Caravans brought thousands of people: black civil rights activists and poor residents of the South, Puerto Ricans of New York, Chicano workers of the Southwest, whites of Appalachia, and American Indians of the West. They had come to the nation’s capital to demand a dramatic redistribution of wealth put forth in an Economic Bill of Rights.

Resurrection City’s Many Races Soul Center or Soul Tent became a site of cultural exchange where residents could celebrate shared experiences of struggle through music and and cultural expression. To celebrate the 50th anniversary of 1968 in Washington, D.C., the DC Public Library will revisit the legacy of Resurrection City’s Soul Tent and consider this historic struggle for justice in the context of today.

The Soul Tent will visit four DC Public Library locations beginning in May and include visual and audio displays, community storytelling, musical performances, listening sessions of speeches and music from Resurrection City ’68, and poster- making workshops. Recordings and photographs from DCPL’s Special Collections and The Library of Congress American Folklife Center will be on view.

Learn more about this history.

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Nando Álvarez, Adrienne Gaither, Just Seeds, Monolith, and NoMüNoMü;  Hunger Wall Poster Project , 2018

Nando Álvarez, Adrienne Gaither, Just Seeds, Monolith, and NoMüNoMü; Hunger Wall Poster Project, 2018

From poster making workshop

From poster making workshop

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Still from video of a performance by Uptown Art House

Still from video of a performance by Uptown Art House

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Soul Tent  programming fliers, 2018 (design by Joshua Gamma)

Soul Tent programming fliers, 2018 (design by Joshua Gamma)

Soul Tent  artist-in-residence Anu Yadav

Soul Tent artist-in-residence Anu Yadav

Soul Tent Stories  flier, 2018 (design by Joshua Gamma)

Soul Tent Stories flier, 2018 (design by Joshua Gamma)

Reproductions of the Resurrection City Songbook

Reproductions of the Resurrection City Songbook

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Copper Rose & Bone at the  Soul Tent

Copper Rose & Bone at the Soul Tent

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I also managed the Soul Tent instagram which can be found here.