UNM-Gallup to showcase lasting legacies

UNM-Gallup to showcase lasting legacies

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By Richard Reyes | Thursday, Feb. 9, 2023

Ingham Chapman Gallery to host interactive typewriter show with jazz music plus photo exhibit of African American experience

GALLUP, N.M. — The Ingham Chapman Gallery at the University of New Mexico-Gallup will showcase two simultaneous exhibits as part of the branch campus’ ongoing celebration of Black History Month — the first of which is a one-day only event while the other will be a monthlong display.

“Typing to the Rhythm of Time” will feature a selection of vintage typewriters owned by Assistant Professor Dr. Andrew McFeaters plus a playlist of jazz music curated by McFeaters as well. The event is meant to be interactive, giving visitors the chance to experiment with the typewriters while enjoying jazz music. The event is scheduled from 2-4 p.m. Monday, Feb. 13.

“It’s an event that allows the contemporary viewer and child and participant an opportunity to interact with something from the past that’s now defunct,” Ingham Chapman Gallery Manager Dana Aldis said of the typewriters. “We’re so used to typing on keyboards and looking at screens, we forget how tactile and manual it used to be to do something that’s now so simple and easy to erase or correct.”

Also starting Monday, Feb. 13, “PRESENCE: Contributing to the Land of Enchantment” will feature 22 photographs from the Charlie Morrissey Museum of the African American Experience in New Mexico. The exhibit will run until March 3.

“For me, these photographs show the inclusion of the African American experience in this state, almost since its founding,” Aldis said. “It ties in the history of the diaspora of the African American experience. It was not only about arriving in big cities in the East coast, but also traveling to the South and West and all over the country. It shows the resiliency of the population and the adaptability.”

Gallery visitors will have the opportunity to both view the photo exhibit and interact with the typewriters while jazz music plays at the same time Monday, Feb. 13.

“PRESENCE” will feature historic photographs of the lasting Black experience in New Mexico, including an image of the Colored Methodist Church in Albuquerque, which was the first African American church established in New Mexico in 1882, according to written commentary provided by the Rev. Dr. Shiame “Seth” Okunor, a retired UNM professor who is now director of the Charlie Morrissey Education Center.

The church was also the site where the first local chapter of the NAACP was formed in New Mexico in 1914. The church was renamed Grant Chapel AME Church in 1905. Grant Chapel AME continues to operate in Albuquerque, now on Claremont Street.

The photo exhibit will also feature Frank and Ella Boyer, African American pioneers who made their way to the southern part of New Mexico in 1901 and founded the all-African American city of Blackdom, a freedom colony, in Chavez County. In 1920, when drought and other homesteading conditions worsened, the Boyers abandoned Blackdom, which is now considered a ghost town, and founded another All-African American city, Vado, in Doña Ana County. Vado is a community that still exists today south of Las Cruces.

“These selected historic photographs evidence the African American permanent PRESENCE in New Mexico,” Okunor stated.

The Ingham Chapman Gallery is open noon to 4 p.m. Monday through Thursday and 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Friday.

“PRESENCE” will be on display from Monday, Feb. 13, through Friday, March 3.

“Typing to the Rhythm of Time” is a one-day event scheduled 2-4 p.m. Monday, Feb. 13.

Both shows are free and open to the public.

Information: Dana Aldis, aldisdl@unm.edu

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