Join Aimee Meredith Cox for an activation of the exhibition, Ming Smith: Feeling the Future, with breath, meditation, and guided movement.
Timeline of Events
6PM | Introduction with Ming Smith and James E. Bartlett
6:15PM | Breathing in the Blur with Aimee Meredith Cox
This event will begin with an introduction with artist Ming Smith and exhibition curator James E. Bartlett. Following Smith and Bartlett’s introduction, Cox will lead participants through a brief engagement through the exhibition that includes conscious breathing, guided meditation, and accessible movement. This collective interaction responds to Smith’s artistic call to engage her art and the world as a full sensory experience. Attendees may participate as much or as little as they feel comfortable.
We encourage you also to join us for the exhibition’s opening reception from 7–9PM.
This event is free to attend, but RSVPs are encouraged.
Location and Accessibility
This event will consist of a walkthrough of the exhibition in the Brown Foundation Gallery, located on the main level of the Museum.
or questions or concerns regarding safety or accessibility, contact YET Torres, Public Programs and CAMHLAB Manager, at email@example.com.
About Aimee Meredith Cox
Aimee Meredith Cox is a critical ethnographer, writer, and movement artist. She is the author of Shapeshifters: Black Girls and the Choreography of Citizenship (2015) and editor of Gender: Space (2018). Cox has performed and toured internationally with Ailey II and the Dance Theatre of Harlem and has choreographed performances as interventions in public and private space in Newark, Philadelphia, and Brooklyn. Cox is also a yogi of many decades. Yoga is integral to her praxis and her overall research and pedagogical commitments. Cox leads yoga teacher trainings as well as advanced study and continuing education workshops around the globe. She is currently at work on two book projects and a performance ethnographic intervention based on research among Black communities in Cincinnati, Ohio. This overall project is called “Living Past Slow Death.” Shapeshifters earned the 2016 Victor Turner Book Prize in Ethnographic Writing, and an Honorable Mention from the 2016 Gloria E. Anzaldúa Book Prize, as well as the 2017 Book award from the Society for the Anthropology of North America. Cox was a Ford Foundation Postdoctoral Fellow, a recipient of the Nancy Weiss Malkiel Award, and has served as the Virginia C. Gildersleeve Professorship from Barnard College.
About Ming Smith
Harlem-based, Detroit-born, Ming Smith attended the famous Howard University, Washington, DC. Ming Smith became a photographer when she was given a camera, and was the first female member to join Kamoinge, a collective of Black photographers in New York in the 1960s. Smith would go on to be the first Black woman photographer to be included in the collection of the Museum of Modern Art.
Smith’s photography initially focused on black-and-white street photography, a format she described as “you have to catch a moment that would never ever return again, and do it justice.” She has often described her work as “celebrating the struggle, the survival and to find grace in it.” Many of Smith’s subjects were well-known Black cultural figures including Nina Simone, Grace Jones, and Alice Coltrane, who all lived in her neighborhood. Smith cites music—specifically jazz and the blues—as being a primary influence in her work. She also likens her work to the blues, saying, “in the art of photography, I’m dealing with light, I’m dealing with all these elements, getting that precise moment. Getting the feeling—to put it simply, these pieces are like the blues.”
As an artist, full recognition for Smith’s work only arrived recently in response to several high-profile exhibitions. She was included in MoMA’s 2010 seminal exhibition, Pictures by Women: A History of Modern Photography. Additional major group exhibitions include We Wanted A Revolution: Black Radical Women, 1965-85 at Brooklyn Museum (New York) in 2017; Soul of a Nation at Tate Modern in London, England (2017), which traveled to Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art in Bentonville, Arkansas (2018), The Broad in Los Angeles, California (2019), Brooklyn Museum in New York (2019), deYoung Museum in San Francisco, California (2019), and The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston (2020); and Working Together: The Photographers of the Kamoinge Workshop, organized by the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts (Richmond) and presented by Whitney Museum of American Art (New York, New York) (2020). More recently, Smith’s work was presented in the solo exhibition, Projects: Ming Smith (2023), at The Museum of Modern Art, New York. Her work is included in the collections of MoMA (New York, New York), the Whitney Museum of Art (New York, New York), Philadelphia Museum of Art (Pennsylvania), Detroit Institute of Arts (Michigan), Virginia Museum of Fine Art (Richmond), the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture (New York, New York), and the National Museum of African-American History and Culture (Washington, DC). In 2023, Smith received the Lifetime Achievement award from the International Center of Photography (ICP) in New York.
About James E. Bartlett
For over 15 years, James E. Bartlett has led a variety of arts projects serving as curator, creative director, and executive director across a wide range of mediums. In the realm of visual arts, Bartlett has curated numerous exhibitions, including solo shows at MoCADA Hudson River Museum (Yonkers), The Museum of Fine Arts (MFA), St. Petersburg (Florida), and the International African American Museum (Charleston). As Executive Director of the Museum of Contemporary African Diasporan Arts (MoCADA) from 2012–18, Bartlett was a leader and innovator in New York’s arts programming space, conducting programming in parks, public housing, and schools across the city. Bartlett has also served as Executive Producer on multiple films by award-winning filmmakers Terence Nance and Blitz Bazawule. Bartlett is Founder of VZBLYF, an arts, design, and production studio. With a passion for authentic storytelling, his practice relies heavily on listening and engagement with community stakeholders.
Bartlett currently serves as the Interim Chief Curator of the International African American Museum, in Charleston. He holds a Global Executive MBA from IESE Business School, a M.S. in Publishing and Media Studies from New York University, and a BA from Loyola University Chicago.
Major support for Ming Smith: Feeling the Future is provided by the Terra Foundation for American Art and The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts. Additional support is provided by Art Dealers Association of America Foundation.
Image caption (left to right): Aimee Meredith Cox at The Museum of Modern Art, New York. Image courtesy Cox.