Jun
11
1:00 pm13:00

Reconstruction Timeline Workshop 2

The Timeline is an interactive 50 foot living document that we at Oak Hill will be using to guide workshops and activities over the next two months. The conversations and work done at Oak Hill over the past year have resulted in a timeline of moments in history that shaped the way we as a society understand race and class today. This is an incomplete history and therefore visitors are invited to participate in its development in various ways and to challenge the propaganda of history so commonly presented to us as a public. A version of the resulting narrative will be published in book form later this year. 

The Timeline consists of three tracks. The first track looks at slavery in its evolving forms — slavery, indentured servitude, labor, incarceration, etc. The second track, Public School Baltimoreis a social history of public education in Baltimore. The third track is a history of new left activism in Baltimore originally compiled by Chuck D’Adamo in 1982 and updated in the early 1990’s. These three narratives work together to shed light on how and why certain historic events took place, and acts of resistance that accompanied them. 

Historical memory is the roadmap that guides our understanding of the past, our place in the present, and our hopes, intentions, and expectations of the future. Artists and cultural producers often visualize and communicate this memory. It is from the work they produce that we as a society frame our understanding of the past, present, and future. 

Jun
9
7:00 pm19:00

Founding the Public School

Founding the Public School is a workshop exploring the complex history of public education in the United States. Is public education a pathway to social equality or is public education a means of reproducing the status quo? Why have schools been the site of intense battles for economic and racial justice? What is the connection between education and freedom? Coming out our study of W.E.B. Du Bois's Black Reconstruction, this workshop beings with a look at the chapter entitled, "Founding the Public School." Utilizing Du Bois's racial and class analysis, we will interrogate the obvious and not so obvious relationship between public education and the economy. Finally, we will consider how understanding the making of the public education sheds light on the unmaking of public education today and the role that pedagogy serves in transformative social movement building.

Who is this workshop for?
This Workshop is intended for educators, students, organizers, activists, and anyone who is interested in public education with dignity and the role of pedagogy in social change. As a compulsory institution, we have all had some experience with the education system, public or private, whether as students, teachers, and/or parents and can speak to these complex issues. Please join us for a lively discussion.

May
21
3:00 pm15:00

Weaving Our Histories Workshop

Weaving Our Histories is a traveling series of workshops and growing installation by Ashley Clarke, Amira Green, Lenora Knowles, and Tannaz Motevalli that explores ways of confronting systemic violence through collective fiber art-making processes. Throughout history, women of color have engaged in certain group fibers practices. These practices facilitated the building of collective consciousness and provided important opportunities to share oral histories. As labors of love, their fibers making was laden with notions of healing—a holistic healing process for liberation that necessitates the engagement and transformation of all parts of society. Inspired by these practices, Weaving Our Histories is an opportunity to reflect on, introduce, and invite others to grapple with us on the meaning of healing, movement-building, freedom, education, history, and knowledge. 

In each workshop, participants engage in a text based meditation, in-depth conversations on the realities of systemic oppression and violence in this country, and explore the possibilities and necessities of healing through group art-making using various fiber techniques. 

These circles begin with women of color because that is our own radical subjectivity and experience. However, we realize that violence in the form of systems of oppression, work to dehumanize us all —therefore the participation and terms of these circles can and should change depending on the context and community. Both healing and art making should be simultaneously individual and collective but only when it is understood individually can the collective be achieved. We can only work together to change the circumstances of violence if we’ve each had enough time to fully understand our own needs and experiences as wholly subjective individuals. 

This collective art practice and project facilitates a process of self-preservation, self and communal healing and liberation. 

Violence: systemic violence; “mass harm” We live in a failed society in which white supremacy, global capital, patriarchy, xenophobia, and other systems of power that continue to dehumanize people of color, women, lgbtq, poor people, immigrants and other people whose existence is othered by the status quo. 

May
5
8:00 pm20:00

Film Screening: The People Speak

The People Speak: A look at America’s struggles with war, class, race and women’s rights based on Howard Zinn’s “A People’s History of the United States.” Voices of Baltimore: Black, White and Gray: vignettes on different folks’ perspectives on Baltimore during and after the uprising. 

Apr
30
1:00 pm13:00

Reconstruction Timeline Workshop 1

The Timeline is an interactive 50 foot living document that we at Oak Hill will be using to guide workshops and activities over the next two months. The conversations and work done at Oak Hill over the past year have resulted in a timeline of moments in history that shaped the way we as a society understand race and class today. This is an incomplete history and therefore visitors are invited to participate in its development in various ways and to challenge the propaganda of history so commonly presented to us as a public. A version of the resulting narrative will be published in book form later this year. 

The Timeline consists of three tracks. The first track looks at slavery in its evolving forms — slavery, indentured servitude, labor, incarceration, etc. The second track, Public School Baltimore, is a social history of public education in Baltimore. The third track is a history of new left activism in Baltimore originally compiled by Chuck D’Adamo in 1982 and updated in the early 1990’s. These three narratives work together to shed light on how and why certain historic events took place, and acts of resistance that accompanied them. 

Historical memory is the roadmap that guides our understanding of the past, our place in the present, and our hopes, intentions, and expectations of the future. Artists and cultural producers often visualize and communicate this memory. It is from the work they produce that we as a society frame our understanding of the past, present, and future. 

Apr
23
3:00 pm15:00

Weaving Our Histories Workshop

Weaving Our Histories is a traveling series of workshops and growing installation by Ashley Clarke, Amira Green, Lenora Knowles, and Tannaz Motevalli that explores ways of confronting systemic violence through collective fiber art-making processes. Throughout history, women of color have engaged in certain group fibers practices. These practices facilitated the building of collective consciousness and provided important opportunities to share oral histories. As labors of love, their fibers making was laden with notions of healing—a holistic healing process for liberation that necessitates the engagement and transformation of all parts of society. Inspired by these practices, Weaving Our Histories is an opportunity to reflect on, introduce, and invite others to grapple with us on the meaning of healing, movement-building, freedom, education, history, and knowledge. 

In each workshop, participants engage in a text based meditation, in-depth conversations on the realities of systemic oppression and violence in this country, and explore the possibilities and necessities of healing through group art-making using various fiber techniques. 

These circles begin with women of color because that is our own radical subjectivity and experience. However, we realize that violence in the form of systems of oppression, work to dehumanize us all —therefore the participation and terms of these circles can and should change depending on the context and community. Both healing and art making should be simultaneously individual and collective but only when it is understood individually can the collective be achieved. We can only work together to change the circumstances of violence if we’ve each had enough time to fully understand our own needs and experiences as wholly subjective individuals. 

This collective art practice and project facilitates a process of self-preservation, self and communal healing and liberation. 

Violence: systemic violence; “mass harm” We live in a failed society in which white supremacy, global capital, patriarchy, xenophobia, and other systems of power that continue to dehumanize people of color, women, lgbtq, poor people, immigrants and other people whose existence is othered by the status quo. 

Apr
4
Jun 25

Stories of Reconstruction

A Contemporary Study of Black Reconstruction in America: 1860-1880
Curated by: Nicholas Petr and Tanya Garcia

Stories of Reconstruction focuses on the final three chapters of W.E. B. Du Bois’s ground-breaking book, Black Reconstruction in America: 1860-1880 — The Propaganda of History, Back Toward Slavery, and The Founding of the Public School. Members of the Oak Hill Center Collective spent the past year meticulously studying Du Bois’s text and the importance of his analysis to the popular understandings of race and class in the United States today. 

In 1935, W.E.B. Du Bois shocked historians and sociologists alike with his book Black Reconstruction in America 1860-1880. He presented an unbelievably detailed analysis of American history that challenged popular understandings of race and class in a young nation which promised to assert “the equality of all men and sought to derive powers of government from the consent of the governed.” Du Bois dissects the official history of the Civil War and Reconstruction period in the United States and reevaluates efforts at the time to both support and complicate the reshaping of American society around its own core values. He recognized that the events that took place over this 20-year period and the way they were remembered would significantly impact social and economic relationships in the United States for generations to come. For Du Bois, a detailed account and critical perspective of these events would be integral to the ability of future generations to effectively work to undo racial and economic injustice that had plagued the nation from the outset. 

We at Oak Hill hope that by presenting an understanding of history and its impact on the present, the dialogue and activities that challenge racial capitalism today will be strengthened and better understood. This ‘exhibit’ is best viewed as a classroom—a space in which alternative curricula around these themes can be explored and shared with a larger audience.