JCAL Announces Building Equity Culminating Festival -- Full details Inside

  • December 5, 2022

From December 11th to 17th, 2022, Jamaica Center for Arts and Learning (JCAL) will present its 2nd annual Building Equity Culminating Festival. Supported by a grant from New York Community Trust, the multidisciplinary arts festival will feature events spanning from live music to dance, insightful panels and more. Building Equity for BIIPOC (Black, Immigrant, Indigenous, People of Color) Artists is a program founded by JCAL in 2020 dedicated to researching, engaging and promoting underrepresented artists in the community, and to providing greater access for audiences to see and to experience their work.

Throughout 2022, JCAL has presented more than a dozen events conceived by the Building Equity Advisory Council, a group of community-based curators and facilitators. On December 11th, the Culminating Festival will begin at 12pm with “UNDEFINED,” a visual arts exhibition curated by Renee Joshua-Porter. Then, on December 13th, JCAL will present “It Takes a Village,” an intimate roundtable discussion on the challenges and successes of raising children in current society, an event conceived by Persephone DaCosta.

On December 14th, Renee Joshua-Porter returns to facilitate a demo of “Uncooking”—a method of using budget-friendly ingredients to promote healthy eating—in “Working With What You Got.” Then, on December 15th, legendary pioneer rapper Sweet Tee will appear in an “honest” discussion about straddling life, both on and off stage.

On December 16th, a second exhibition, “Sacred Landscape of the Divine Feminine, an Intergenerational Art Experience,” will open, curated by Lisa D. Wade. JCAL will then host the dance event “Episodes of the Soul,” created by Zazel O'Garra of ZCO/DANCEPROJECT. The festival’s final event, “Just BEing,” curated by Carolyn “Candy” Johnson, is an “artistic blend of various pronouncements in relation to ‘this thing called life,’ identity, and chosen existence that creates a space for all to commune in a common rhythm.”

“The first show of our second Building Equity year was in March 2022, and with every show, community representation was strengthened on stage—and in the audience,” said Wendy Arimah Berot, JCAL’s Manager of Special Projects. “I have had audience members hug me at the end of a show, thanking me for making them feel ‘at home.’ New York Community Trust gave us the opportunity to showcase the diverse beauty that is in Queens, and we have succeeded in a monumental way.”

View JCAL Events here