The William Grant Still Arts Center is proud to announce the longest running annual exhibition in Los Angeles, “Fun and Games – The 42nd Annual Black Doll Show”. Our first in person exhibition after two years online, this exhibition is an exploration of ancestral games and how play can help us think deeper and archive histories. This year we are looking for dolls, quilts, games and images/videos that fit our theme of historic games. Ethnographic studies in Africa allow us a peek into how games are part of social negotiations within various African cultures and Afro-Creole societies in the Americas. The investigation of games and social play indicates three main concepts in anthropological and archaeological theory: identity, agency, and power. In examining, through dolls, the history and culture of gaming in the Black diaspora, we seek to highlight the ways that the oppressed have established in-group power dynamics and identity through games and play.
This year, we include our new acquisitions, a collection of vintage and rare dolls donated by Sandra Campbell.
Dr. Cynthia Davis
Heather Hilliard Bonds
Kimberly Wilfong Sigman