February 11, 2023 – August 5, 2023

In Collaboration With California African American Museum

Opening Day Hours: February 11, 2023 11:00 a.m.–5:00 p.m.

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Turner Award-winning British artist Helen Cammock’s first exhibition in the United States features film, poetry, performance, archival documents, and books rooted in the social history, geography, and community of New Orleans, a place she visited for the first time in January 2022. Helen Cammock: I Will Keep My Soul is a gathering of encounters and observations, figured in text and image, of her experiences in the city. Cammock convenes both contemporary and historical voices—from archivists, artists, writers, and musicians to the protagonists of the civil rights movement—and adds her own through poetry, ceramics, and the sound of her trumpet, an instrument she began practicing in New Orleans.

Drawn in part from archival materials in the Amistad Research Center in New Orleans, I Will Keep My Soul is threaded with the story of artist Elizabeth Catlett’s struggle for agency, creative autonomy, and support throughout her 1976 commission for the Louis Armstrong sculpture in New Orleans’s Armstrong Park. Catlett’s protracted process, revealed through letters and fraught exchanges, acts as a mirror to both past and present, asking how to be artist and activist—and free.

Helen Cammock: I Will Keep My Soul is organized by the Rivers Institute for Contemporary Art & Thought (Rivers) and the California African American Museum (CAAM) and presented at Art + Practice (A+P). This exhibition is curated by Jordan Amirkhani and Andrea Andersson, Rivers, in partnership with Essence Harden, CAAM, as part of a multiyear collaboration between Rivers and CAAM. CAAM at A+P is a five-year collaboration.

Helen Cammock: I Will Keep My Soul is made possible by the generous support of the RosaMary Foundation and The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts. Research for this exhibition was conducted in the archives of the Amistad Research Center as part of the Amistad-Rivers Research Residency supported by the Mellon Foundation.

Helen Cammock,
Helen Cammock,

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Educational Resouces

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A+P’s education program welcomes teachers, students and art enthusiasts to explore and engage with A+P’s museum-curated exhibitions. Interested in bringing your group to A+P? Free guided tours are available to schedule Tuesday–Friday, 11:00 a.m.–5:00 p.m.

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Armstrong, Louis. Satchmo; My Life in New Orleans. New York: Prentice-Hall, 1954.

Baldwin, James. Another Country. New York: Dell Press, 1962/1988.

Baldwin, James. Early Novels and Stories. New York: Library of America, dis- tributed by Penguin Putnam, 1998.

Bridges, Ruby. Ruby Bridges Goes to School: My True Story. New York: Scho- lastic, Inc., 2009.

Bridges, Ruby. I am Ruby Bridges. New York: Scholastic, Inc., 2022. Broom, Sarah M. The Yellow House. New York: Grove Press, 2019.

Campt, Tina M. A Black Gaze: Artists Changing How We See. Cambridge, MA: The MITPress, 2021.

Davis, Angela Y. Blues Legacies and Black Feminism: Gertrude “Ma” Rainey, Bessie Smith, and Billie Holiday. New York: Pantheon Books, 1998.

Du Bois, W.E.B. The Souls of Black Folk. New York: Bantam Books, 1989.

Emanuel, Rachel L. A More Noble Cause: A.P. Tureaud and the Struggle for Civil Rights in Louisiana. Baton Rouge, LA: Louisiana State University Press, 2011.

Greene, Ronnie. Shots on the Bridge: Police Violence and Cover-Up in the Wake of Katrina. Boston: Beacon Press, 2015.

Griffin, Farah. Harlem Nocturne: Women Artists and Progressive Politics During World War II. New York: Basic Civitas, A Member of the Perseus Book Group, 2013.

Hansberry, Lorraine. To Be Young, Gifted, and Black: Lorraine Hansberry in Her Own Words. ed. and coll. Robert Nemiroff. New York: Signet, 1970.

Harrison, Vashti. Little Leaders: Bold Women in Black History. New York: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers, 2017.

Harrison, Vashti, with Kwesi Johnston. Little Legends: Exceptional Men in Black History. New York: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers, 2019.

Herzog, Melanie. Elizabeth Catlett: In the Image of the People. Chicago: Art Institute of Chicago, distributed by Yale University Press, 2005.

hooks, bell. All About Love: New Visions. New York: William Morrow, 2000.

Hurston, Zola Neale. Their eyes were watching God. New York: Harper Peren- nial Modern Classics, 2006.

Jordan, June. Civil Wars: Observations from the Front Lines. Boston: Beacon Press, 1980.

Lewis, Robin Coste. To the Realization of Perfect Happiness. New York: Knopf, 2022.

Mixed Company. eds. Jeri Hilt and Kristina Kay Robinson. New Orleans, LA: New Orleans Loving Festival, 2015.

Morrison, Toni. Sula. New York: Knopf, distributed by Random House, 1973/1974.

Moten, Fred. In the Break: The Aesthetics of the Black Radical Tradition. Min- neapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2003.

Parker, Morgan. Magical Negro: poems. Portland, Oregon: Tin House Books, 2019.

Rogers, Kim Lacy. Righteous Lives: Narratives of the New Orleans Civil Rights Movement. New York: New York University Press, 1992.

Shaik, Fatima. Economy Hall: The Hidden History of a Free Black Brotherhood. New Orleans, LA: The Historic Louisiana Collection, 2021.

Walker, Alice. In Search of Our Mother’s Gardens: Womanist Prose. San Diego: Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, 1983.

Woods, Clyde. Development Arrested: The Blues and Plantation Power in the Mississippi Delta. London/New York: Verso Press, 2017.

Intro Select Works Virtual Tour Educational Resources Installation View BOOKS ON VIEW: BIBLIOGRAPHY Press Release Related Programming