Black Panthers at 50: Anniversary Celebrations in Bloomington and Beyond

In addition to the BFC/A’s Black Panther Film Festival (October 17-October 22, 2016) the Black Panther Party’s 50th anniversary has been commemorated from coast to coast. The Maysles Documentary Center of New York City and the Oakland Museum of California are among two venues that have highlighted The Black Panther Party’s rise to prominence 50 years ago.

blackpantherlogo

The Maysles Documentary Center of New York City’s 2016 Black Panther Party Film Festival Poster

The Maysles Documentary Center of New York City just concluded its program, 7th Annual Black Panther Party Film Festival—The Black Panthers: Vanguard of a Revolution, which was produced by the Black Panther Commemoration Committee of New York. This program featured two films Freeman Brothers (2015) and Stanley Nelson’s The Black Panthers: Vanguard of the Revolution (2015). Freeman Brothers highlights the stories of recently departed brothers Ronald and Roland Freeman who were two of the few original members of the Southern California chapter of the Black Panther Party for Self-Defense in 1967 and were involved in the shootout on Dec. 8, 1969 involving over 300 LAPD officers and the SWAT team.

maxresdefault

Image of Black Panther Party Member, Elder Ronald Freeman

A groundbreaking film in its own right, The Black Panthers: Vanguard of the Revolution (2015) is the first feature length documentary to examine the Black Panther Party’s importance to American cultural, political consciousness, and take a critical look at Party’s shortcomings. Through the layering of archival footage and interviews with individuals who witnessed the different phases of the Black Panther Party, filmmaker Stanley Nelson creates a compelling narrative that showcases one of America’s most defining social, political, and historical moments. A Post-screening Q&A with producer Laurens Grant and original members of the Black Panther Party followed the screening.

The Oakland Museum of California (the city that boasts the title of the Black Panther Party’s birthplace) debuted its Black Panther Party exhibit in early October, 2016.

OAKLAND MUSEUM BLACK PANTHERS 50

The exhibit, which will be on display until February, 2017 takes a multimedia approach to its curation.

l2010-2-1_edit_0

Image of Emory Douglas iconic Black Panther Party artwork

img_20161015_172056

Original draft of Black Panther Party’s Ten-Point Program

Through the showcasing of a combination of historical artifacts, rare photographs, first-person accounts from former Panthers, scholars, and community members, film screenings and a contemporary art show, the exhibit serves to further evidence the Party’s cultural, artistic, and political influences, which transcend the limits of geography and time.

img_7134

Literature of and about the Black Panther Party

 

img_7093

The Traumanauts (2007) by David Huffman

To take part in the local commemoration of the Black Panther Party’s 50th Anniversary, please consider attending screenings of The Black Power Mixtape 1967–1975 / Mayday at the Indiana University Cinema, which will take place on Saturday 0ctober 22, at 7 PM.

black_power_mixtape

Still from The Black Power Mixtape 1967-1975

 

 

About BFC/A

The Black Film Center/Archive at Indiana University was established in 1981 as the first archival repository dedicated to collecting, preserving, and making available historically and culturally significant films by and about black people. The BFC/A's primary objectives are to promote scholarship on black film and to serve as an open resource for scholars, researchers, students, and the general public; to encourage creative film activity by independent black filmmakers; and to undertake and support research on the history, impact, theory, and aesthetics of black film traditions. View all posts by BFC/A

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: