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CAMHLAB at Freedmen’s Town

HFTC x CAMH are pleased to announce The Black Man Project, Nia’s Daughters, Ann ‘Sole Sister’ Johnson, and Billion Tekleab as the 2023 CAMHLAB Freedmen’s Town artists-in-residence. For this context-specific iteration of the residency program, the artists and collectives were selected for projects that highlight, honor, and animate the critical histories and stories of Freedmen’s Town, a neighborhood established in 1865 by over 1,000 formerly enslaved people that is now recognized as Houston’s first Heritage District.

In line with HFTC and CAMH’s goals, CAMHLAB at Freedmen’s Town aims to generate research, contextualize, and connect artists and the general public to the stories of Freedmen’s Town through month-long residencies. Each residency will culminate in a public presentation of a project within Freedmen’s Town.

Artists-in-residence will be provided a dedicated work space and will be supported by the HFTC x CAMH and a Freedmen’s Town Research Fellow to realize their projects and make connections throughout the neighborhood. Throughout each residency, the artists will also work alongside historians, archivists, and urban planners to create activations that contribute to robust discussions around local issues of social justice, equity, land, and art.

2023 Artists-in-Residence

The Black Man Project

Nia’s Daughters | UHURU DANCES: Sites of Liberation

Ann ‘Sole Sister’ Johnson | Re-Education of Freedmen's Town

Billion Tekleab | Freedmen’s Truths

2023 Fellows

Nate Edwards

June 23 – December 1, 2023

The Reading Room by Amarie Gipson

June 24 – December 1, 2023


HFTC x CAMH is a partnership between Houston Freedmen’s Town Conservancy (HFTC) and Contemporary Arts Museum Houston (CAMH) promoting Houston Freedmen’s Town as a monument of Black community, agency, and heritage. Freedmen’s Town, a neighborhood established in 1865 by over 1,000 formerly enslaved people is now recognized as Houston’s first Heritage District. The two organizations have partnered to create artistic activations through artist residency programs, research fellowships, and exhibitions with the mission to share and honor the story of Houston’s Fourth Ward and to establish creative opportunities informed by its legacy and community stakeholders.

In 2023, HFTC x CAMH announced their partnership with with the City of Houston (COH) and artist Theaster Gates to promote Houston Freedmen’s Town as a monument of Black community, agency, and heritage through the multi-year Rebirth in Action: Telling the Story of Freedom initiative supported by the Mellon Foundation and NEA Our Town grant. The project’s first phase includes community engagement and artist-led activations through a continuation of CAMH’s artist residency program, CAMHLAB.

For more information on HFTC x CAMH, visit CAMH.ORG/HFTC.

About Houston Freedmen’s Town Conservancy

The Houston Freedmen’s Town Conservancy is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization that protects and preserves the history of Freedmen’s Town for the benefit of future generations. The conservancy supports community engagement, re-education, and heritage tourism while preserving the historic legacy of Freedmen’s Town, inspiring all through education and awareness of its unique story.

About Contemporary Arts Museum Houston

Established in 1948, Contemporary Arts Museum Houston (CAMH) is one of the oldest non-collecting contemporary art museums in the country and is internationally known for presenting pivotal and landmark work by artists recognized as the most important of the 20th and 21st centuries. CAMH’s mandate is to be present, to connect artists and audiences through the urgent issues of our time, and to adventurously promote the catalytic possibilities of contemporary art. CAMH’s programming in and beyond the Museum is presented free to the public and advocates for artists’ essential role and impact in society.