Lizzloves's Blog

Spreading love and sisterhood…

LizzLoves Judith Jamison March 14, 2011

“People come to see beauty, and I dance to give it to them.”-Judith Jamison

 

Have you ever had the pleasure of witnessing the beauty of an Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater production? In a word: breathtaking.

 

I went to a show at BAM in Brooklyn a few years ago, and I can still remember the chills I got while I watched the dancers float across the stage. Their movement, synergy and passion came together to create a brand new color that doesn’t have a name in the existing spectrum.

 

Today I’m recognizing the company because I learned that its exquisitely talented Artistic Director for the past 22 years, Judith Jamison, will be stepping down this year.

 

Judith is not just a leader; not just a choreographer. She is a force, a legend, an inspiration. In the beginning of her career she was a powerful and evocative dancer. She trained with some of the biggest names in ballet, including Agnes de Mille. After some time with the American Ballet Theater, she joined the Alvin Ailey Dance Theater in 1965, where she became Alvin Ailey‘s muse. During her 15 year dance career with the company,  Mr. Ailey built several shows around her incredible talent.

 

Judith went on to have a very rich career in several platforms of dance, but where she may have had the most impact on audiences was when she was behind the scenes as the Artist Director at the Alvin Ailey Dance Theater, a role she took on in 1989, after Mr. Ailey’s untimely death. Building upon the founder’s model to incorporate several styles of dance—ballet, modern, jazz and African—Judith’s productions were (and are) a magical journey through dance history.

 

Judith’s career thus far has been an inspiration to dancers and choreographers everywhere, but particularly to women and people of color.

 

Thank you, Judith Jamison. Because of you, little brown girls in the tutus and toe shoes will always have strong role model in you and the dancers you have nurtured throughout your career. You are a beautiful face, voice and spirit of a community.

 

“So many people dwell on negativity and I’ve survived by ignoring it: it dims your light and it’s harder each time to turn the power up again.”—Judith Jamison

 

*Tell me about your Ailey dance experiences here in my comments section!*

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LizzLoves Carolyn Mazloomi February 25, 2011

Quilting is an American tradition with deep roots. While this art is commonly known for its patterns or rural themes, it is also known for its folk and cultural influences that capture the stories of many generations.

Carolyn Mazloomi, African-American master quilter and historian, uses her thread and needle to tell the stories of women everywhere. Her work—which has included Asian women, African tribal art, and Billy Holiday—has been featured all over the world, including the Smithsonian Museum. (*check out the quilt gallery on her site)

Not long after she devoted her life to her art, Carolyn was moved to unite African-American quilters everywhere. So, she founded the Women of Color Quilters Network in 1985, making an indelible mark on the African-American community and creating a sisterhood through art and expression. What began as a handful of quilters is now a group of thousands of women.

Carolyn Mazloomi and her “sisters in the cloth” give a gift to all people by helping to keep the dying art of American quilting alive. Her influence is a constant source of inspiration to African-American quilters everywhere, like the The Brown Sugar Stitchers based out of Atlanta, GA. (*Thanks for sharing, Aunt Pat!)

Watch PBS’s video about Carolyn Mazloomi here. Watch as she creates her quilt called “Rasta.”

*And share your comments of women in art with me here on my blog!*

photo courtesy of CarolynMazloomi.com

 

LizzLoves…Ulali August 3, 2010

When I was a sophomore at Haverford College, I took a life-changing music course called “Native American Music & Belief.” On the social justice tip, it really opened my eyes to the rich (but often painful) history of the indigenous people in our country. I also never knew how stirring and mind-blowing their musical expressions could be.

One of the requirements for the class was to attend at least one performance or lecture during the semester. I really didn’t know what I was in for when I decided to attend the Ulali concert on campus. This all-female a cappella group represents several tribes from the First Nation. The beauty they create with their voices is unlike any other harmony I’ve ever heard and it made the hairs on my arms stand on end.

I chose the video, “Mother,” (above) because it honors Native American/American Indian women with its lyrics and the montage of images. But you can also check out their famous song “Mahk Jchi” here or a live performance here.

 

LizzLoves…sistas on covers! July 28, 2009

Filed under: arte/fotos,badass women — lizzloves @ 12:54 pm
Zoe Saldana

Zoe Saldana

Jada Pinkett-Smith

Jada Pinkett-Smith

You gotta love seeing this ladies on covers of mainstream mags! They both look radiant, healthy and happy. Now all we need next is women of a variety of body types 🙂

*ps: that SHAPE issue features my girl Teresa (aka T) from Women’s World of Boxing! Go pick it up and check how dope she looks!

 

LizzLoves…Rosita La Riveter :) July 22, 2009

Filed under: arte/fotos,inspirational — lizzloves @ 2:16 pm

sisepuedeAs promised, here is the Latina version of Rosie the Riveter…or as I like to refer to her, Rosita La Riveter 🙂

 

LizzLoves…Michelle Obama tees July 21, 2009

Filed under: arte/fotos,badass women — lizzloves @ 2:05 am
First Lady flexin'!

First Lady flexin'!

I wish I could have found this image bigger, but it was the best I could do. Anyway, I saw this t-shirt in Union Square today and had to share it! I’ve seen Latina takes on Rosie the Riveter (which I will share soon), but this Michelle one is new! I love it!