By Melanie Graysmith
February is Black History Month, a month long opportunity to inspire, honor, and celebrate the contributions and achievements of African Americans from its rich cultural perspective.
Museum of the African Diaspora
685 Mission St.
San Francisco, CA 94105
The Museum of the African Diaspora (MoAD) has a noble mission as it plays a vital role in the local San Francisco Bay Area arts community: “MoAD invites everyone to engage in the cultural expression of the African Diaspora through contemporary art.” MoAD is devoted to welcoming people of all ages, ethnicities and backgrounds to come to MoAD as visitors and members and learn more about the beautiful space, ongoing exhibits, and culture, history, and art of people of African descent. Black History Month is a perfect time for an introduction or a revisit. Explore current and upcoming exhibitions here.
Black History Month Events
San Francisco Public Library
All library locations across San Francisco
Dates: A sampling of Black History Month events and activities at SFPL branches around the city: Main Library, exhibit: A Game of Color, the African American Experience in Baseball, ongoing through March 18; Ocean View branch, movie screening: Pride, Feb 15, 4 pm-6 pm; Portal branch, Freedom Quilt Craft, inspired by the work of the Alabama “Freedom Quilting Sewing Cooperative,” Feb 21, 6:30 pm-7:30 pm; Western Addition branch, film: All Eyez on Me, the true and untold story of prolific rapper, actor, and activist Tupac Shakur, Feb 25, 2 pm-4:30 pm.
The San Francisco Public Library is offering a range of cultural events celebrating Black History Month, and each branch library has events for local communities. Check the events calendar at your SFPL branch for scheduled events. Events through June 14, 2018.
Oakland Museum of California
1000 Oak St.
Oakland, CA 94606
Dates: Question Bridge: Black Males, through February 25, 2018
The Oakland Museum of California (OMCA) first opened more than forty years bringing the art, history, and natural sciences of California and the local community together. The OMCA nurtures its deep ties to the community with a wide, ongoing variety of educational and outreach programs that connect with the Oakland community and beyond with events and activities that help visitors discover their place in California. In its connection to the community the museum is offering one of the Bay Area’s best exhibits, Question Bridge: Black Males, from artists Chris Johnson and Hank Willis Thomas, originally presented in 2012 as an intimate video installation weaving together conversations among a diverse group of 150 black men across the United States.
Yerba Buena Center for the Arts
701 Mission St.
San Francisco, CA 94103
Dates: Through March 25, 2018
Edgar Arceneauz is a Los Angeles-based artist. His live presentation Until, Until, Until… is a multi-media video installation that “… revisits a controversial performance by Ben Vereen at Ronald Reagan’s inauguration.” In addition to this work is the complementary Library of Black Lies (2016), “a large-scale sculpture and labyrinth containing a collection of crystallized books—from dictionaries, to encyclopedias, to novels—presenting variants on African American history.” Note: Until, Until, Until… is a live performance on Feb 22-24.
Civil Rights History Discussion Group
If you are looking for a welcoming community for lively monthly discussions on the history of civil rights, here is a local Meetup group that is open to new members. If you are not familiar with Meetup, here is a terrific opportunity to learn more and become part of an international organization that reaches out to anyone looking to connect with others who share a common interest in a philosophy, sport, the arts, cooking, or just about anything else. The Civil Rights Discussion Group boasts, “In this group we’ll dive deep into the many dimensions of the struggle for racial justice in twentieth-century America, and we’ll have a helluva lot of fun while we do it!” Take a few minutes to explore the Meetup site for additional local groups that share your interests.