The Black and Indigenous Historical Walking Tour of Lower East Side NYC by Dennis RedMoon Darkeem 

Opening: June 2021

Project Description

As a result of FAB’s LES African and African-American Histories Open Call, we will work with Dennis RedMoon Darkeem, an artist and educator of Yamassee Creek-Seminole Native American and African American descent, on a walking tour through the Lower East Side highlighting underrecognized Black and Indigenous histories in the neighborhood.

The project will result in the creation of a map and educational tool for African and Native American landmarks in the Lower East Side, with an activation of the map set to take place during the 2021 Juneteenth celebrations at M’finda Kalunga Garden in Sara D. Roosevelt Park, near the site of the second African Burial Ground.

The Second African Burial Ground—originally located between Bowery and Forsyth St., and Stanton and Rivington St.—was active between 1795, after the first African Burial Ground was closed; and 1853, when the free Black community in what is now the Lower East Side became displaced due to urban expansion and ongoing colonization. 

In response, the project aims to bring greater visibility to African and African-American histories and cultures of the Lower East Side, to better understand their legacies, and to connect the past to the neighborhood today.

Image Credit: “Stolen People Stolen Land” (2021) series, Collage on 1880 land Deed-2 by Dennis RedMoon Darkeem

 

About the Artist

Mr. Dennis RedMoon Darkeem is Bronx born and raised. He is of Yamassee Creek-Seminole Native American and African American descent. Dennis has been an Artist and Art educator for over 10 years working in the DOE, Private and Charter schools in the South Bronx and Harlem. He received his Bachelor’s in Fine Arts and his Master’s in Art Direction from Pratt
Institute. Over the years. He’s been an Artist in Residence with many art organizations like Wave Hill, the Laundromat Project, The Point, Surf Point foundation, Bronx Children’s Museum, I.C.P, and Jamaica Arts Center. Dennis has exhibited his work at the Bronx Museum of the Arts, Brooklyn Museum of the Arts, La Mama Theater, The MoMA, Bronx Art Space, Rush Gallery, The Judaic Museum of Art, and Smack Mellon, and has received fellowships and scholarships from the NYSFA, NYC Teachers Foundation, Marko Roth scholarship, and Price Waterhouse Fellowship award.