Hackney celebrates Black history


Hackney Council is celebrating Black history and culture with a two-month long festival of events and activities, including an exhibition exploring African clothing design and its influence on Hackney fashion and style today.

The Council’s Black History Season has something for all ages, including inspiring guest speakers such as Sandra Agard, music, story, arts and craft workshops, book launches and history talks. One of this year’s highlights, Africa Threads – Hackney Style, which opens on 1 October, is an exhibition focusing on the creation and use of printed cloths and their designs as expressions of African identity.

Other key events to look out for include an evening with Hackney based artist Yinka Shonibare MBE (booking is essential for this event); a rap and poetry workshop at Shoreditch Library; a stroll around Stoke Newington on the abolitionists trail; a talk about Joanna Vassa as well as the Anti-University festival from 20-22 November. The Anti-University was based in Rivington Street in the late 1960s. The movement wanted to break the ‘social structures’ forced on people by institutions such as schools and universities and allow to people to meet each other without having to act out socially prescribed roles.

Cllr Jonathan McShane, Cabinet Member for Health, Social Care and Culture, Hackney Council
Our Black History Season is a wonderful opportunity to celebrate the part that African and Caribbean communities have played in shaping Hackney as we know it today. I want to encourage you to come along to our cultural festival, we have a packed programme of events and activities with something that will interest, entertain and educate all ages.
Cllr Jonathan McShane, Cabinet Member for Health, Social Care and Culture, Hackney Council

Black History Month is a national annual celebration of the contribution that African and Caribbean communities have made both locally and across the globe.Events are free and they will take place at Hackney Museum, Hackney Archives and libraries until the end of November 2014. Some events require advance booking.

For more information, pick up a programme of activities from libraries and other venues across the borough.