This is a virtual-only event streamed on City of Asylum’s virtual platform, City of Asylum @ Home.
The #notwhite collective in-Dialogue series features conversations with BIPOC, AALANA, indigenous and immigrant artists and arts administrators.
The series reimagines the past and present history of the arts sector by engaging and presenting the wealth of experience, strategies, and tactics of the global majority, notwhite descendants, inheritors of colonialism, indigenous and immigrants who navigate a predominantly white arts sector.
Celebrating and recognizing arts and cultural workers, especially those who tend to be under the radar and forgotten about, speakers represent the Greater Western Pennsylvania region as well as national leaders in the arts.
December conversations feature Emmai Alaquavia and Willy James
Emmai Alaquavia: A 2-Time Emmy Award-winning film director, photographer, and composer, Emmai Alaquavia skillfully showcases the soulful account of humanity across multidisciplinary art platforms. Once homeless, Alaquiva is the CEO of Ya Momz House, Inc, a digital media agency, co-founder of the Hip-Hop On L.O.C.K. youth program and curator of OpticVoices, an interactive photography exhibit. Alaquiva hold’s a 2017 Emmy nomination for his film “Ghetto Steps.” Alaquiva is a Pittsburgh Business Times and SMART 50 Pittsburgh’s, “Top CEO”, appointed to serve on the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts under Governor Tom Wolf, nationally honored as Black Enterprise Magazine’s “BE 100 Modern Men of Distinction,” as well as a national BMe Community Leader recognized by President Barack Obama. Most recently, Alaquiva was nominated as ‘Artist of the Year’ by Pittsburgh Magazine, wrote and directed a viral PSA, “Unspeakable” featured on Good Morning America which aims to amplify the voices of the Deaf, hard of hearing and those with disabilities and recently won a 2020 Emmy Award.
Willy James: A filmmaker from Pittsburgh, PA. His favorite hobby is practicing mindfulness meditation and orienting toward what his contemplative teacher calls “the Good, the True, and the Beautiful”. Willy works in production at WQED/PBS Pittsburgh and has produced/directed media projects for The Pittsburgh International Airport, the Children’s Museum, Pittsburgh Water and Sewage Authority (PWSA), Civil and Environmental Consultants, The Sprout Fund and more. Recently, Willy has done videography for Grammy-nominated musician Jack Harlow and is currently in collaboration with the Venerable Dr. Barry Kerzin, physician to his Holiness the Dalai Lama.
Photo provided by Beth Kukucka of Kukucka Photography
About the #notwhite collective: The #notwhite collective is a group of 13 Women Artists whose mission is to use non-individualist, multi-disciplinary art to make our stories visible as we relate, connect and belong to the Global Majority.
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