Black music – from Jazz, the Blues, Reggae, Hip Hop through to Grime – has dominated popular music and culture for the last century. But do we know what’s in the UK’s archive collections about Black popular culture? Who’s responsible for collecting this material, framing it and what are its sources? Where are the gaps and the buried and lost artefacts, and is this a fundamentally devalued and fragmented archive? Who has the right to collect, shape and re-frame the Black archive for the past, the present and the future? Why is this an urgent question for communities, artists and activists, and national and regional cultural organisations? What role can digital media play in making archives more accessible and to whom?
This event was produced by PopChange as part of Who Are We?, a cross-platform event designed and curated for Tate Exchange (Tate Modern) by Counterpoints Arts and The Open University, reflecting on identity, belonging, migration and citizenship. The conversation was facilitated by Hassan Mahamdallie.
PopChange is a pioneering initiative from Counterpoints Arts exploring how we can harness the power of pop culture to shift how we think, talk and feel about migration and displacement.