Part II: John Lewis “Testament B” (“2GTHR U CN RDM TH SL OF TH NATN”), (2021), Music: Huey Lewis Dub by Deadbeat (Blikartz)
"I imagined that another, more socially focused, collaborative approach to activism might be marked by the history and words of the recently deceased American, Rep. John Lewis. I was drawn to a fragment of the posthumous essay that he wrote for The New York Times examining linkages between his political history and the recent Black Lives Matter movement, and the deaths of too many Black people by police violence. While developing the text animation my friend Deadbeat released a engaging, churning slab of dub techno featuring a vocal recording of Lewis examining his activist trajectory from a different time and perspective. The doubling and echoes between Lewis’ voice and text reverberated very deeply for me." - Tony Cokes
For “Testament B” Tony Cokes appropriated and reframed words from a New York Time's article entitled "Together, You Can Redeem the Soul of Our Nation" (2020) written by US civil rights hero John Robert Lewis. Lewis (February 21, 1940 – July 17, 2020) was an American politician, statesman, and civil rights activist and leader who served in the United States House of Representatives for Georgia's 5th congressional district from 1987 until his death in 2020. He was the chairman of the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC) from 1963 to 1966.
Lewis was one of the "Big Six" leaders of groups who organized the 1963 March on Washington. He fulfilled many key roles in the civil rights movement and its actions to end legalized racial segregation in the United States. In 1965, Lewis led the first of three Selma to Montgomery marches across the Edmund Pettus Bridge. In an incident which became known as Bloody Sunday, state troopers and police attacked the marchers, including Lewis.
CLICK HERE to read "Together, You Can Redeem the Soul of Our Nation" by John Lewis.
Question 3: Adrienne Edwards x Tony Cokes discuss Part II: John Lewis “Testament B” (“2GTHR U CN RDM TH SL OF TH NATN”), (2021), Music: Huey Lewis Dub by Deadbeat (Blikartz)
Adrienne Edwards is a New York-based curator, scholar, and writer. Edwards is currently the Engell Speyer Family Curator and Curator of Performance at the Whitney Museum of American Art.
Edwards curated performance commissions at Performa from 2010 to 2018. Prior to moving to the Whitney in 2018, Edwards worked as curator at large at the Walker Art Center in Minneapolis. She held that position since 2016. As of 2018 Edwards, was a Performance Studies Ph.D. student at N.Y.U. In 2016, Edwards curated a show “Blackness in Abstraction,” at Pace Gallery. In 2019, Edwards with Danielle A. Jackson curated an exhibition at the Whitney: “Jason Moran” the first museum survey devoted to the MacArthur-winning pianist and conceptualist.