IN RESIDENCE: JULY 7 - 22, 2023
About Space Taking Artist Residency
The Space Taking Artist Residency is Fresh Arts’ annual summer artist-in-residence program that provides traditionally underrepresented local artists with the physical space, financial support, and marketing platform to experiment with their craft and share their work with the public in new and innovative ways—often including interactive community events, exhibitions and other unique experiences.
Fresh Arts is proud to highlight Dr. Lindsay Gary, founder of Dance Afrikana as our July 2023 STAResident. Her project, titled Dancing Home (to) Houston, featured three jam-packed weeks of African Diasporic dance workshops and performances for kids, elders and everyone in between, immersive and interactive exhibitions, live podcast recordings, oral history collections, and more.
Watch the video below for a recap of Dancing Home (to) Houston including a preview of the podcast episode where Dr. Gary discusses defining “African culture,” creating resources, the challenges of sustaining a black dance co. and more:
About STAResident: Dr. Lindsay Gary
Dr. Lindsay Gary (PhD, MFA, MA, MPA) is a professor-scholar, conceptual diasporArtist, and Afrocentric entrepreneur whose mission is to educate, connect, and empower the African Diaspora. She graduated from the University of Houston with a BA in History and minors in Dance and Business Administration, and later obtained her Graduate Certificate in African American Studies. She also has an MA in History, an MPA in Public Policy, and an MFA in Dance, and recently obtained her PhD in Africology and African American Studies from Temple University. Gary is an adjunct professor of African American Studies at the University of Houston and of History at Houston Community College, in addition to being the Executive Director of The Re-Education Project (501c3), the Artistic and Executive Director of Dance Afrikana LLC, Co-Director of Ade Ile Properties (Nigeria), and the CEO of Isegun Enterprises LLC. She is the author of The New Red Book: A Guide to 50 of Houston’s Black Historical and Cultural Sites, and the director and creator of “Who Yo’ People?”, a documentary film that explores the African heritage of Louisiana.
About Dance Afrikana:
Since its inception in 2016, Dance Afrikana’s mission has been to create a world where people of the African Diaspora are empowered and connected through the African dance tradition, and where dancers have the safe space and platform to grow artistically and culturally.
Dance Afrikana offers unique programming as the only dance company in the city teaching and offering certain dances of the Diaspora. As such, it is a valuable commodity to the community of Houston and beyond.
Dance Afrikana presents two annual productions that highlight Afro/Black dance to educate the public on important aspects of diasporic culture through dance, including Kuumba: A Celebration of Afro Dance and the Juneteenth Celebration. Both of these productions explore important elements within the African diaspora (culturally and historically), as well as engage world class performers and artists to display the artistry of the diaspora.
As a partner of Houston Metropolitan Dance, Dance Afrikana offers weekly dance classes for adults and teens. Additionally, Dance Afrikana is home to the Houston Black Dance Collective (HBDC). The mission of HBDC is to support Houston-based dance organizations and individual dancers and choreographers that are a part of the African Diaspora, and to foster a space of collaboration amongst Houston’s black dance community.
Dance Afrikana is fiscally sponsored by Fresh Arts and has received numerous awards from the Houston Arts Alliance and Mayor’s Office of Cultural Affairs including the City’s Initiative Grant (2019), two Cares Act Grants (2020), and the Support for Organizations Grant (2021).
Follow Dr. Gary and Dance Afrikana on social media to stay up to date on their upcoming events and other news!
The Space Taking Artist Residency is funded in part by a grant from Texas Commission on the Arts, the City of Houston through Houston Arts Alliance, Houston Endowment, and Brown Foundation. A special thank you to MECA – Multicultural Education & Counseling through the Arts – for opening its doors to Fresh Arts for this year’s STAR program.