Joshua Rashaad McFadden in conversation
August 11, 2016
Woodruff Arts Center
More about McFadden
JRM in conversation was JTR Presents' first production since its inception. It produced a live artist talk with social justice and civil rights activist, Joshua Rashaad McFadden, and the audience on the topic of the Black identity in American culture. This topic was discussed in three segments, which his body of work addressed:
Colourism and its role in the, already arbitrary, aspects of beauty. Many women of color face discrimination regarding if they are beautiful or not based on the hue of their skin and the texture of their hair, in addition to other attributes of beauty women struggle with in general. This conversation was expressed through McFadden's work, "Colourism".
The progression of activism and its impact since the black civil rights movement in the 60's was the focus of McFadden's second body of work, "Selma". Which reflected on how activism has affected African Americans over the past 50 years and builds a comparison between the Selma March in the 60's and the "Black Lives Matter" movement. McFadden also includes shots from the 50th anniversary March of Selma into this collection of work.
McFadden's third, and more recent, body of work is focused on the black male identity. McFadden had photographed men of color under 40 years old and asked them a series of questions regarding who was their father, male role-model, or "father figure" and build a collection of portraits with intimate bonds between the subject and his father or role-model. This is in relation to addressing how black males are portrayed in American culture and imagery and the strong contrast to the reality of the topic.
This was facilitated with Michael D. Winn, local playwright and Community Engagement Manager at Alliance Theatre.