A private view for an exhibition about the British Black Panther took place last night, Tuesday 15th October 6pm-9pm and was attended by former British Black Panther and members of the British Black Power movement as well as acclaimed hip hop artist Akala, Capital Xtra radio presenter Kojo, Comedy outfit Mandem on the Wall, photographer Charlie Phillips as well as Sky Drama Commissioners who are working on a new series depicting the life and times of the British movement.
The exhibition at Photofusion Gallery, Brixton shine's a light on the legacy of the British Black Panthers and Black Power Movement during Black History Month and runs from 16-26 October featuring works by Organised Youth a group of local young people 13-25 inspired by the youthful activism of the British Panthers.
After gaining access to the Brixton based Panthers, Organised Youth photographed each Panther member inside their home and recorded a series of oral history interviews, they have produced a documentary film and a limited edition book about the project called The British Black Panthers and Black Power Movement.
Archived photographs shot by Neil Kenlock, the official photographer of the British Black Panther Movement and founder of Photofusion Gallery are on show at the exhibition alongside a Black Panther living room instillation and interpretation protest banners.
Lizzy King, Photofusion Community Programme Manager, said: "
This important project has proven to everyone that young people are more than capable of working with living history. The group have worked together and across generational, social and racial boundaries to produce a sensitive and informative body of work that will stand as an educational and creative resource for their own and future generations. The archived recordings and images will ensure that we are able to appreciate the stories of the racial and social struggle that went before."
Neil Kenlock, photographer for the British Black Panthers said:
"This Organised Youth project by young people from Brixton has brought the stories of our time as British Black Power fighters back into the public consciousness. Their exhibition at Photofusion Gallery is a celebration of our hard work and a testament to the potential in young people"
The young photographers, filmmakers, historians worked with experienced facilitators to capture the untold stories of the British Black Power Movement through interviews with Panther members and Black Power activists.
This project has been organised by Photofusion with funding from the Heritage Lottery's Young Roots Fund.
In an era where society still questions whether we need BLACK HISTORY MONTH any longer and yet TV documentariesare still exposing racism against the black community in all areas, it has to be asked, Should there be a new generation of British black panthers? The groups initial objective, set ecades ago, clearly still hasn't been met.
What: Photography exhibition
When: Wed 16th Oct - Sat 26th Oct
Where: Photofusion Gallery
Organised Youth www.organisedyouth.com
National Heritage Lottery www.hlf.org.uk
Organised Youth is group of young photographers, filmmakers, curators and future historians who have been brought together by Photofusion's Community Programme. The Organised Youth team have been trained in Oral History interview techniques by the British Library. All recordings will be to archive standard and made available, free and to the public as an education and learning resource once the project is completed in October 2013. To aid our research and learning, Organised Youth will be visiting the Black Cultural Archives, Lambeth Archives and Autograph, who are partners in this project
British Black Panthers and the Black Power Movement The interviews focus on the period between 1968 and 1972 when the Panthers were active in Britain alongside other Black Power movements including the Black Unity and Freedom Party and the Brixton Black Women's Group.
About Photofusion Originally founded as the Photo Co-op in 1983 in South London, Photofusion provides a range of photographic services with analogue, digital and moving image facilities. Photofusion also delivers a range of crucial outreach engagement projects, working with socially and culturally marginalised young people, offering photographer-led creative programmes, skills-based accredited courses, bursaries and internships in collaboration with local organisations and a range of funding partners. As a National Portfolio Organisation, the ongoing investment from Arts Council England enables Photofusion to maintain its innovative, high-quality facilities that continually address and support the creative, technical and critical development of a photographer's practice so the organisation can continue its commitment to support photography in the UK.
About Heritage Lottery Fund Using money raised through the National Lottery, the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) sustains and transforms a wide range of heritage for present and future generations to take part in, learn from and enjoy. From museums, parks and historic places to archeology, natural environment and cultural traditions, we invest in every part of our diverse heritage. HLF has supported over 30,000 projects, allocating £4.6billion across the UK. Website: www.hlf.org.uk