Partnership seeks to highlight racist legacy of “restrictive deed covenants” attached to many properties in the Prince George’s County Gateway Arts District
Joe’s Movement Emporium (Joe’s) and the Hyattsville Community Development Corporation (Hyattsville CDC) will launch a series of workshops, dance, music and theatrical experiences for the Gateway Arts District of Prince George’s County called “Mapping Racism.” This project is made possible through a grant from Mid Atlantic Arts Foundation with support from the National Endowment for the Arts. Events will begin January 2019 and are integral to Joe’s 2018-19 Season, “Resilient Cultures, Rising Truths.” Artist partners include Ally Theatre Company and Orange Grove Dance with plans to include other local arts groups. Events will take place throughout the Gateway Arts District.
Planning meetings between Joe’s and Hyattsville CDC have already begun. Joe’s will be the provider arts programs to accompany the research, maps and images derived by Hyattsville CDC. The plans include a theater performance by Ally Theatre Company about specific land restriction events in history; a site-specific performance by Orange Grove Dance where Windham Road splits Brentwood and North Brentwood; creative response workshops facilitated by Alonzo Davis, land use experts and local elected officials; and a video exhibit at the Prince George’s African American Museum and Cultural Center (PGAAMC) that will also include images and maps part of the Mapping Racism project.
In its 1948 Shelley v. Kramer decision, the Supreme Court ruled restrictive covenants in real estate unenforceable. Discriminatory covenants included in deeds throughout the Washington area had barred the sale of property to Jews, blacks, and other minorities. Click for Image Source
“One form in which I find institutional racism still present are vestigial restrictive deed covenants,” states Stuart Eisenberg, Hyattsville CDC Executive Director. “They lie hidden within the fabric of Hyattsville homes, properties and institutions. Although the restrictive deed covenants rarely rise to the surface, many properties stand upon these embedded directives that previous land owners have written into their deeds of sale as preconditions limiting future use of the property.” Read his full February article in the Hyattsville Life & Times by clicking here.
“When we engage in the creative process as a group, something special happens to address the bits of society that other structures can’t,” says Brooke Kidd, Joe’s co-founder and Executive Director. “The creative community has the real juice to foster what we want in a just society … when people feel art, they get to know culture and they see the similarities. Mapping Racism is a project that is essential now more than ever.”
ABOUT JOE’S MOVEMENT EMPORIUM
Established in 1995, Joe’s Movement Emporium is a cultural arts hub that acts as a catalyst for creativity and economic opportunity. Based in Mount Rainier, Maryland in the Prince George’s Gateway Arts District, Joe’s serves more than 70,000 visitors annually. Joe’s has five arts-based youth programs that bridge the creative divide between under-resourced families and those with means. Through programs and productions in education, performing arts, and work readiness, Joe’s integrates progressive education, creativity, and youth development.
In 2016, Joe’s achieved the Standards of Excellence through the Maryland Association of Nonprofits, which validates and promotes our exemplary work in youth arts education programming. Additionally, Joe’s earned the highest possible rating through Maryland EXCELS (level 1) based upon nationally recognized quality standards and best practices. This rating allows Joe’s to receive state funds to expand our reach in providing high quality arts education to youth in our community.
ABOUT HYATTSVILLE COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT CORPORATION
The Hyattsville Community Development Corporation (CDC) is a 501 c(3) non-profit organization. The CDC’s mission is to develop arts and public spaces, to spur economic development and the quality of community life, to encourage widespread leadership for community revitalization, and to rebuild the City’s commercial corridors. envision Hyattsville as a healthy, diverse, well-planned, and thriving community of homes and businesses where the arts: visual, performing and public, are a part of our work and the fabric of our lives.
We are professionals, tradesmen, business owners, artists, longtime and new residents. We work to reverse indifference and blight in the City of Hyattsville and surrounding communities. We recognize Hyattsville’s social, cultural, and material assets, and are committed to harnessing our community’s potential and talents to revitalize the City and neighboring areas. Our board and staff are comprised of Hyattsville residents and local stakeholders.
Neena Narayanan, Marketing & Communications, Joe’s Movement Emporium
301-699-1819 | email@example.com
Justin Fair, Economic Development Coordinator, Hyattsville Community Development Corporation
301-683-8267 | firstname.lastname@example.org