#TakinBackSunday travels to ROOTS WEEKEND: JACKSON, MISSISSIPPI!
“In the midst of oppression remaining awake becomes a powerful resistance tool and a precursor to contemplation.” ~Barbara A. Holmes, excerpt from Joy Unspeakable: Contemplative Practices of the Black Church
#TakinBackSunday is about stayin’ woke. Facilitated by the gender expansive aesc(th)etic duo, Black Moon Monastics, this Trans-denominational service is an artistic act of Queering Black* Church. Celebrating intersectional Queer/Trans/Two-Spirit/Gender-Nonconforming Life, we reconnect with ritual routes of Indigenous/Creole/Afro-Diasporic* origins. A #DignityInProcess Folk-medicine circle series woven with Black Feminist scripture, Indigenous Creatrix storytelling, somatic-centering, Freedom Song ciphers, and ancestor reverence—our meditation is for Liberation! We conjure healing justice by honoring the use of sanctuary as site for both sacred and social movements. We touch Afro-futurities, bending space-time as we rise in the counterclockwise shuffles and claps of Ring Shout processions. Part participatory performance, part Freedom School, part Shout House, we lean into Afro-Indigenous cultural cosmologies where the community process to Create, steward Wisdom, and Conjure are One.
Simply, we embody the Living church of Queer Black* Magik.
About the officiants: Black Moon Monastics
The collective medicine of #DignityinProcess Founding Artivist Director, ChE, and Founder of SOULFOLK Sounds, kei slaughter. This Queer Black Aesc(th)estic Sonic duo weave spiritual roots & rhythms, healing harmonies, and ancestral incantations awakening all beings to Freedom F(l)ight. These expansive extraterrestrials cross genre, space-time, conjuring unapologetic Black Magik. Impossible to confine, these Black Fe Folk play cast iron skillets, gumbo pots, and medicine jars with sticks & stones, igniting our bones! Contemplative vibrations inspire prayerful processionals to mobilize the Invisibilized. Descending with Dignity, this interdisciplinary duet bring reverence for Blackness wherever they land.
ChE (they/them) is a Queer/Gender Non-Conforming, Afro-Indigenous artivist weaving ancestral healing, embodied education, and socially-engaged artmaking to conjure movements of intersectional Freedom. ChE is an honored 2017-2018 Intercultural Leadership Institute Fellow and a 2017 Black Spatial Relics: Artist-in-Residence with Brown University’s Center for Slavery & Justice. Steeped in national organizing, ChE is the Founder/Artivist Director of #DignityInProcess, an interdisciplinary platform celebrating the dignity of gender-expansive First Peoples/Afro-Diasporic Life through site-specific performance rituals, Wisdom Councils of cross-generational mentorship, and Freedom Schools rooted in Queer Black Feminism. Creator of liberatory coaching programs Underground Railroad and Freedom Land, ChE supports radical leaders-of-Color in manifesting our ancestors’ wildest dreams! Learn more at http://che-art.life/
kei [they/them] is a Queer Black Gender-Non-Conforming Musician/Producer, Soulful Healer, and Community Activator. As a Vocalist, Multi-Instrumentalist, and Sonic Storyteller, kei conjures bokou ancestral magik from deep New Orleansroots. Founder of S O U L F O L K Sounds, kei offers radical music therapy, production, and culturally responsive training and community programming centering QTPOC. As The Pencil Fairy, kei shapes safe spaces for Queer Black imagination to take flight. Noted Projects include: #DignityinProcess (Director of Freedom Freequencies), Alleged Lesbian Activities (Co-Music Director) and Spirit & Sparrow. Discography: Dark Fire (2017). Learn more: keislaughter.com.