By Jennifer Sadler
Columbus is a culturally vibrant community that strives to recognize that diversity goes beyond ethnicity, race and religion to encompass characteristics such as gender, sexual orientation, age and more.
The arts serve as a unique and powerful bridge between communities by providing a platform for educational explorations, social exchange and community development. GCAC spoke to three arts organizations in town—each with a unique style and approach to arts programming designed to promote diversity.
By Jennifer Sadler and Jami Goldstein
Since 2003, photographer Abdi Roble and writer Doug Rutledge have been documenting the lives of Somali immigrants in the United States and of the people forced into vast refugee camps set up in Kenya in the wake of the 1991 civil war in Somalia. The Somali Diaspora: A Journey Away, released in 2008 with photos by Roble and essays by Rutledge, traces the journey of a family from a refugee camp in Kenya to new lives in the United States.
Roble founded the Somali Documentary Project here in Columbus with a mission to use photography and writing to document the worldwide Somali Diaspora. In the history of human movement, no other migration has been documented while still in progress.
GCAC recently spoke with Roble and Rutledge to discuss their work and the history of the project.
CATCO PRESENTS PIERCE TO THE SOUL BY CHIQUITA MULLINS LEE
Born the son of a former Mississippi slave, Elijah Pierce migrated north in the early 1900s and settled in Columbus to become a preacher, barbershop owner and one of America’s most-celebrated folk artists. Pierce to the Soul, a world premiere written by Columbus playwright Chiquita Mullins Lee, celebrates this hometown hero—his struggles, his triumphs, and the vibrant creative life that swirled around him in Columbus for more than 50 years.
TRANSIT ARTS AND CENTRAL COMMUNITY HOUSE CELEBRATE EARTH DAY WITH CLEAN-UP, CULTIVATE, CONNECT, CREATE AND EMERGENCE OF SPRING ART EXHIBITION
From 9 a.m. until noon participants will weed and plant a vegetable and flower garden as well as clean up around the building.
16th Annual Asian Festival – Memorial Day Weekend at Franklin Park
Thousands of people from all over central Ohio and the Midwest will gather in Columbus to enjoy the 16th Annual Asian Festival at Franklin Park on Saturday, May 29 and Sunday, May 30.
The 2010 Asian Festival will feature cultural displays, colorful entertainment, artist demonstrations, delicious food, a job fair, health and wellness screenings and activities from 15 ethnic groups.