As an extension of their short film AS TOLD TO G/D THYSELF, The Ummah Chroma collective provides a sacred space at Het Nieuwe Instituut entitled G/D THYSELF: Spirit Strategy On Raising Free Black Children. The sacred space invites visitors to explore themes of meta-physical transcendence, spirituality, and self-expression.
In early 2019, The Ummah Chroma (Terence Nance, Jenn Nkiru, Marc Thomas, Kamasi Washington, Bradford Young) launched their collective with the musical short film AS TOLD TO G/D THYSELF. With a shared vision rooted in the music that brought them together, the collective explores themes of metaphysical transcendence, spirituality, and self expression.
The Ummah Chroma has built upon these themes, the striking visuals and improvisational score of their film, to create a ritual space G/D THYSELF: Spirit Strategy On Raising Free Black Children in Het Nieuwe Instituut. This ritual space extrapolates meditations on raising free black children from the aforementioned film. The space draws on inspiration from many cultural traditions and over the course of its five months' tenure, the collective will invite guest performers and practitioners to practise and teach the above-mentioned 'spirit strategies' within the space and will programme a series of activations designed to guide the community in maximising the space's use. Mediums will include but are not limited to ritual performance, sculpture and video installations.
Functioning in a similar way to the collective itself, visitors are invited to reflect, participate in the stated intention and reflect on this participation, not in isolation, but in community. Furthermore they are encouraged to use the space as a free-use ritual space for whatever spirit strategies they feel the desire to execute.
The Ummah Chroma’s interdisciplinary and collective way of working is exemplary for an upcoming artistic practice in which dominant worldviews are questioned, to make room for alternative histories and non-discriminatory worlds. G/D THYSELF: Spirit Strategy On Raising Free Black Children is the first installation by The Ummah Chroma collective, and their first project in the Netherlands.
On January 25th G/D THYSELF: Spirit Strategy On Raising Free Black Children opens in Het Nieuwe Instituut, with members of The Ummah Chroma present. The installation will be activated with an extensive programme of live performances, film screenings, masterclasses and talks during International Film Festival Rotterdam (IFFR), from January 23rd to February 2nd.