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African Restaurant Week is hitting NYC. Here’s the food being dished out.

For many Africans moving to and living in the US, food and culture are major attributes to their way of living. African Restaurant Week in New York City is a food festival held on the streets of New York and the surrounding boroughs bringing that culture to the public.

Vendors and restaurants from all over the city gather on avenues to serve their adored African cuisine to curious foodies, as well as enjoying cultural items, art, clothing, music, and people.

African Restaurant Week
African Restaurant Week

This year, the food festival takes place, for the most part, in Brooklyn on Tompkins Avenue and Putnam Avenue this weekend. African restaurants from all over Brooklyn and the nearby boroughs will be cooking up African dishes and snacks from all over the continent. 

Food from Ghana, like Wachee and Eba, Nigeria, like Dodo and Egusi, and Cameroon, like Eru and Achu soup will be served by local restaurants in efforts to grow awareness around local small business and especially African-owned restaurants.

Jollof Rice with Plantain and Chicken
Jollof Rice with Plantain and Chicken

One participant in the festival will be AfricanDishout the only app in New York City to deliver specifically African food to your front door. Dishout has been doing this for almost 3 years and has made over 60,000 deliveries. They are helping spread the word about the festival this Saturday and Sunday, October 10 to 11. 

Helping African businesses deliver authentic African cuisine to food lovers around the Big Apple was seemingly a problem at first for founder Jamila Zomah. Zomah uniquely identified a problem in getting food, like Jollof rice which Jamila recommends, as authentic as in her home country of Ghana.

Brooklyn Suya
Brooklyn Suya

Jamila claims,

“I experienced the challenge of finding an exclusive platform that had a variety of authentic African restaurants to choose from for delivery. The existing food delivery apps that offer a few African restaurants had confusing menus and do not provide a rich variety of African cuisine.”

Restaurant week is an opportunity to explore different parts of African cuisine while getting a taste for what kind of food you like the most. Vegan options are available, and juice bars will also be available for those who can resist the delicious African food that will be brewing on the avenue.

Guinea West African Rice and Veggies
Guinea West African Rice and Veggies

Dishout wants to bring African food to everyone, not just the most populated African community in the U.S. here in New York City.

As an underserved group, African people previously had no way to order the many varieties of food to their door. Zomah found this to be an issue socially and economically and works to resolve it each day. 

Nigerian Meat Pie
Nigerian Meat Pie

Jamila is aiming to “grow into other cities of a similar demographic and eventually capture the entire broader population of lovers of diversity and all things African.” 

She continues,

“The goal of our company is not only to solve this problem but to provide a platform that promotes small businesses, particularly our local African restaurants and black-owned businesses. These businesses are truly the flavor of what makes our communities unique and keeping us all connected.”

African Restaurant Week
African Restaurant Week

Ultimately, the AfricanDishout app is an evolving platform that conveniently connects people to the food they love.

Look out for this article on PAGE magazine.

Smithsonian’s National Museum of African Art has issues with whiteness?

Many might think that an African art exhibition would be one of the last places racism would exist.

Unfortunately, this isn’t the case with the Smithsonian Institute, a group of the US’ most prominent and important museums in DC.

Concerned employees published an unsigned open letter via Twitter to call out issues related to the Smithsonian’s racism, and to create a call for change.

The Smithsonian isn’t the first place getting called out for racist practices. What makes this situation ironic and especially troubling though is that there’s a lack of Black representation…in an art exhibit devoted to Black culture.

Let’s dive into this revealing open letter and this case of the Smithsonian’s racism.

There are no Black curators…in a museum about Black art?


One would think that an entire museum devoted to Black art would have a diverse group of art curators on their staff. According to these former employees’ open letter, however…

“There are no Black curators in a museum solely dedicated to the arts and culture of Africa. For over 10 years, NMAfA’s curatorial team has been exclusively White despite demonstrated interest amongst Black arts professionals and scholars in joining the institution.”

This isn’t just a matter of white people just “happening” to be more qualified for the position somehow, not when they make up the entirety of the museum’s curators.

There’s a deeper undercurrent of racism here. What makes it even more of an affront to Black culture is that it’s all happening in a museum focused on the culture.


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Online Exhibition: Sailors and Daughters: Early Photography and Indian Ocean Ongoing Exhibition Sailors and Daughters reveals the expansive maritime societies of Zanzibar, the east African coast, and beyond. From the 1840s, cameras traced the international migrations of traders, sailors, sons, and daughters through Indian Ocean ports, continuing trade that dates back over five millennia. East African cities flourished as hubs of both land and sea trade routes, which extended to the central African interior, Horn of Africa, Persian Gulf, Indian Ocean islands, western India and the Far East. The region’s intercultural ethos generated a multitude of encounters between subjects, photographers, and the global audiences who viewed the resulting images. By gathering images from scarce and little-known collections of early photographs, lithographs, postcards, and private albums, this exhibition focuses attention on a diverse cross-section of the region’s people and their cosmopolitan cities by the sea. It serves as a starting point for a larger photographic and creative visual history of the prosperous and diverse communities of the Indian Ocean world. #AfricanArtInspires #NMAFA #Smithsonian #OnlineExhibition

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Complaints of racism and mismanagement are abound


The open letter doesn’t just cite a lack of Black curators for the museum. It also mentions disparities in the museum’s workforce, as well as institutional policies that discriminate against people of color.

“Persistent racial disparities at NMAfA are apparent in the application of institutional policies. On several occasions, managers at NMAfA have attempted to promote White employees into vacant roles, while disregarding the institutional policy regarding a competitive application process.”

In 2020, there are only five full-time Black employees that comprise the museum’s staff of over 40 people. This discrimination doesn’t just stop at the hiring process.

The letter also describes examples of the termination of Black employees, seemingly without good reason. It also shows a disparity in the support systems for white workers as opposed to people of color.

“From 2019 to 2020, two senior Black employees in key roles were suddenly dismissed without any evidence of under-performance or unethical behavior; however, white employees at NMAfA with sub-par performance have previously been offered special counseling, expanded job opportunities, or redeployment to new positions.”

Despite being a museum dedicated to Black culture, it seems the place hypocritically enough is not the most inclusive towards its Black employees.

“In the past five years, over ten former and current Black employees have reported or experienced incidents of racial bias, hostile verbal attacks, retaliation, terminations, microaggressions, and degrading comments.”

These offenses taking place in a space for Black art and culture makes them even more severe.

The letter raises issues in particular against the National Museum of African Art’s Lead Curator and Deputy Director Christine Mullen Kreamer. 

Kreamer has had multiple complaints filed against her, and the open letter cites these including “abuse of hiring and promotion authority… and her consistent bullying and hostility directed towards Black colleagues.”

These complaints and issues surrounding the culture of racism in the National Museum of Art have been previously ignored by the Smithsonian’s leadership. The concerned employees who penned the letter even criticized the former director for the NMAfA, Gus Casely-Hayford, in a tweet.

What’s really good with the Smithsonian Institute?

What’s even more baffling is that there’s evidence that the Smithsonian can do better. The National Museum of African American History and Culture is a prime example of the diversity museums can have, as well as how they can properly respect Black culture.

The museum’s curators for example include Michelle Wilkinson, Spencer Crew, Dwandalyn Reese, and many other people of color as staff. The National Museum of African American History and Culture has been open since 2016 and is the newest member of the Smithsonian Institution. 

The National Museum of African Art however has been a member of the Smithsonian however since 1979, and it was significant in being the first museum in the US to adopt a focus on modern African art.

This makes it a wonder in promoting diversity in the world of African art. So with all the time it’s been around, why can’t it have diversity in its workforce?

Fortunately, these complaints about a lack of diversity and inclusion in the museum may soon be addressed.

The Smithsonian’s secretary Lonnie G. Bunch III recently announced he will be looking into the claims brought up by the former employees in their open letter.

This is a huge step in addressing the lack of diversity in the National Museum of African Art, and hopefully, it can set a good example for other members of the Smithsonian Institute for the future.

The jux: How fraudsters are forging Black art for big racks

African-American artists are getting played hard body karate. Their works are being forged by fraudsters and there is nothing that can really be done to combat the market of fakes due to fear of litigation, a lack of funds, and limited expertise.

The problem is a direct result of the demand for African-American art to be exhibited and sold in museums. In 2018 there was an obvious market shift. At Sotheby’s art auctions alone, African-American art brought in millions of dollars.

Some works quadrupled in price. A quartet of Jean-Michel Basquiat’s pieces raked in $41 million. Another piece by Kerry James Marshall sold for $21 million — it was originally acquired for $25,000.

Proving this notion even further, Henry Taylor’s “I’ll Put a Spell on You” (2004) work sold for $800,000, quadrupling its $200,000 estimate, the piece would set a world record for Taylor. Still, for forgers, this is the ultimate jux.

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According to a recent article released by The Art Newspaper, New York-based gallerist Michael Rosenfeld and champion for the works of African-American Modernists is aware of the rise in fake artworks.

Just over the past few weeks, Rosenfeld has come across forged works of Alma Thomas, Beauford Delaney, Charles White, Romare Bearden, and Bob Thompson. He told The Art Newspaper how messed up this is due to the reason many of these artists’ works were overlooked during their lifetimes. Rosenfeld said,

“It’s a whole generation: you could go from A to Z through the list, from Charles Alston to Charles White. I am seeing fakes attributed to all of them. You simply can’t go back to the source anymore, and there is only a handful of people who worked first-hand with a lot of these artists while they were alive… Forgers know they can capitalize on that.”

Real talk, there might not be any solution because of the overlook and lack of people who worked first hand with the African-American artists’ works that are being forged. Simply put, there are not enough experts and knowledge of the works is limited.

Even for Black artists that have foundations and estates protecting their legacy, there aren’t enough funds to take on a case. Bridget Moore of New York’s DC Moore Gallery, which represents African-American artists told The Art Newspaper, “Foundations just aren’t doing this work anymore; they can’t afford to.”

Fuck, so what’s the solution? Keep a file of fakes on hand, suggested Moore.

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Still, there has to be another wave, or nah. A court case back in 2011 proved just how long a forger can get away with flipping fake pieces. William and Beryl Toye pleaded guilty to conspiring with a New Orleans-based dealer for nearly half a century.

The jux? They sold dozens of works painted by Toye fraudulently and signed as Clementine Hunter, an African-American artist who died in 1988. A shame that the case itself took three years to conduct and conclude even though Clementine was a well-known painter.

FBI special agent Randy Deaton told The Art Newspaper why it was so difficult to catch the thieves. “She was well known, but there wasn’t an authoritative archive of her career,” he said.

What really got the Louisiana forgers bagged was the massive number of forged works attributed to Toye and the presence of cat hairs on some of the artworks. Cat hairs!


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As we look to 2019 expect the forging market of African American art to grow.

Rosenfeld who first noticed the rise of fakes 20 to 30 years ago told The Art Newspaper that the situation is “increasingly epidemic” and the only way to not get g’d is by common sense. He said,

“If it seems too good to be true, then it probably is.”

Nipsey Hussle and Deray feud highlights issues of masculinity, Blackness

It’s safe to say that the outrage over H&M’s reveal of their ‘The Coolest Monkey in the Jungle” hoodie yesterday was both loud and warranted.

The retail brand faced extreme scrutiny, with everyone from LeBron to Questlove weighing in on the matter. H&M lost collaborating partners like The Weekend due to this egregious misstep and lack of oversight.

Among those who weighed in was West Coast artist, activist, and entrepreneur, Nipsey Hussle. Yesterday the “FDT” rapper uploaded a picture on Instagram of a group of young Black boys, where, in the caption, he stressed the importance of positive representation.

What he didn’t know however was that he also offended the LBGTQ community in the process.

According to the prominent social activist and openly gay man Deray McKesson, the post was out of line and homophobic. After reposting Nipsey’s IG post to his 1.3 million followers on Twitter, the two had a temporary back and forth, which sparked an entirely different convo.

The “agenda” Nipsey is referring to is an idea shared by certain members of the Black community that the media conspires to show Black men in a light that either makes them appear too violent or feminine. It is for this reason why Nip is facing scrutiny.

While the LBGTQ community are indeed still fighting for rights, describing Nipsey’s words as “violent” and “homophobic” are a stretch.

Stating that Blacks don’t have as many straight, positive, non-violent representations may be unfounded and baseless, but it’s an observation, and it does not mean he’s against the cause.

Regardless, Nipsey chose his words extremely carelessly here. Hopefully he can realize his misstep and get back to working for his community.

Organization in Georgia starts ‘Come Meet A Black Person’ event. Deadass.

It would be insensitive to say that we’re living in the most racially divided era in American history but in light of the past couple of years — between the shooting of unarmed African-Americans by the police, the Trump administration, and the backlash to Black people speaking out about these injustices — it’s been easier to make that claim.

In light of this tension, Urban Media Maker (UMM), based out of Georgia, is creating opportunity for white people who have never been in a position to meet Black folks through an initiative called “Come Meet a Black Person,” the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports.

Brilliant, bold, or downright funny — whatever you want to call it, it’s real.

The program’s founder, Cheryle Moses, created the event after seeing a 2014 study from Robert Jones of the Public Religion Research Institute (PRRI) that showed a whopping 75 percent of white people do not have Black friends or any other friends outside of their own race.

“It blew me away because as a black person you kind of know most white people don’t have black friend, but to actually see a number, that quantifies it. I know everything about white people, but a lot of white people don’t know much about our culture or our community. Not real stuff anyway… There are a lot of woke white folks and black folks that don’t know how to reach out to each other.”

In Moses’ head, if she creates a safe space for Blacks and whites to meet without the normal external pressures it would dictate a productive interaction, and strides could be made in alleviating some of the racial misunderstandings.

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Moses has even incorporated a scavenger hunt so people find things from various cultures. Moses said,

“I am looking forward to it because I believe it will help break the ice for a lot of folks who want to be friends with people who are nonwhite, but don’t know how to go about it.”

‘Come Meet a Black Person’ launches November 16 and will be held at Cornerstone in Lawrenceville, Georgia.

We may not see the results or benefits from this experiment until years have gone by; genuine relationships take time to build.

But if this goes anything like Moses predicts and improves race relations even a little, then she’s done a good work, even if the whole thing is a little goofy.

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