Juneteenth is the oldest nationally celebrated commemoration of the ending of slavery in the United States. This commemoration dates back to June 19, 1865, when news of the end of the Civil Wa and the Emancipation Proclamation’s declaration “that all persons held as slaves are, and henceforward shall be free” reached Galveston, Texas—nearly two-and-a-half years after Lincoln issued the proclamation. Today, this holiday is observed around the country with celebrations including parades, cook-outs, performances, community engagement, and more.
At the MFA, visit the galleries to learn about the African American experience on a tour or talk exploring the Museum’s collection of art by African American artists, focusing on the exhibition featuring two prominent artists in “Wilson/Cortor”; join local visual and fashion artists, and musicians and DJs for one-of-a-kind installations and performances; and catch a screening from this year’s Roxbury International Film Festival—the largest New England film festival dedicated to celebrating films by, for, and about people of color.
Bring your voice to a City Talk entitled “Revolution”—a panel discussion with Boston-area thinkers, institutions, entrepreneurs, activists, city officials, and artists—tackling the question, “What does Revolution mean to/within our communities of color?” And don’t miss the opportunity to watch playwright, director, and saxophonist Jeff Robinson perform his one-man play “Live Bird” about jazz legend Charlie “Bird” Parker.