This film series is presented in conjunction with the exhibition Rashid Johnson: Message to Our Folks, a survey spanning the last fourteen years of the artist's career and including more than 30 of his artworks. The three independent films were selected by Rashid Johnson himself, variously informing his artistic practice, his exploration of themes of race and identity, and his interest in Afrofuturism.
Join us for the first of three nights of the series, featuring a screening of Sweet Sweetback's Baadasssss Song (1971), written and directed by Melvin Van Peebles.
Considered a precursor to the blaxploitation genre and originally released with an X rating, this film tells the story of one African-American man's run-in with the law. The film was written, produced, directed, and scored by Melvin Van Peebles, who also stars as Sweetback, a sex-show performer forced to flee to Mexico after a racially charged altercation with police.