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Spirit Dollmaking with Phyllis Chatham

Presented by IAS Afrofeminist Transatlantic Collaboration
October 23, 2020 - 1:00pm

Join us in an afternoon of spiritual dollmaking with North Minneapolis artist Phyllis Chatham.  This is the second in a series of neighborhood gatherings by the Institute of Advanced Studies Afrofeminist Transatlantic Collaboration on Sound, Touch and Speculation. This outdoor, socially distanced event is an opportunity for black healing through rest, play and co-creation. 


We will honor our mother earth and ancestors with dollmaking, a community altar, ceremony, fire, yams, pumpkins, and the practice of sisterhood.  


All people of African descent and/or BIPOC-identified are welcome. All genders welcomed. Register now for more details.

The energies of Autumn are fire, earth, and harvest.

Phyllis Chatham’s cloth doll journey begins with helping black women and girls connect with their own path toward emotional and spiritual healing. Inspired by the symbols, power, and mythologies of black feminist folklore she creates dolls that connect with the energy of the warrior, goddess, and mother earth. Her dollmaking is just one aspect of her practice. She plays and experiments with black female embodiment through the figures of the black mermaid and the black fairy. She is also known in the community “Chitchat,” the Afrocentric clown. Her spirit dolls represent freedom, joy, trust, and clarity. Through dollmaking, she encourages us to tell our own stories through the principles of compassion, forgiveness, and honoring our black girl selves. 


“I am what bell hooks calls, a sister of the yams.”-- Phyllis Chatham


The Afrofeminist Transatlantic Collaboration is a project by black feminist artists, archivists, and scholars organizing between the UK and Minneapolis.

Register here.