Today, Ava DuVernay’s company ARRAY announced a rollout of new content in the coming months, which features an ode to the late Jean-Michel Basquiat, a masterclass taught by ESSENCE’s March 2022 cover star Niecy Nash-Betts, and more.
ARRAY’s summer programming will begin on June 10 with the release of the Hollywood Africans film screening series, inspired by Jean-Michel Basquiat’s work Hollywood Africans in Front of the Chinese Theater with Footprints of Movie Stars. The monthslong presentation will highlight movies from the artist’s personal collection, with monthly screenings at the 50-seat Amanda Cinema, followed by Rashomon and Black Orpheus.
On July 8, Nash-Betts will helm ARRAY’s Masterclass, which began in 2021. According to Variety, Nash-Betts will share insights for “achieving longevity in Hollywood, breaking through typecasting, successfully navigating auditions, thriving while on set and collaborating with filmmakers.” This acting lab will take place on the arts and social impact collective’s Creative Campus in Los Angeles.
Shaft, Gordon Parks’ 1971 classic and Beverly Hills Cop – starring Eddie Murphy – will screen on July 15, with Lisane Basquiat, Jean-Michel’s sister and the co-administrator of his estate, joining for an in-depth discussion after the film concludes. The screening series will close the following month on August 5 with The Brother from Another Planet, and George Romero’s 1968 horror film Night of the Living Dead.
“ARRAY’s focus on instigating narrative change through our non-profit ARRAY Alliance allows us to gather audiences around issues aligned with our core mission and everyday work,” ARRAY’s SVP of public programming, Mercedes Cooper said in a statement. “With film and art as the doorway, this summer’s programs invite conversations around otherness, authority and privilege, love and loss, as well as Black masculinity. Our ongoing goal is to catalyze art as a tool for education, understanding and healing.”
Attendees can also create self-portraits in the “We Wear Crowns” Art Studio. The screening series and studio were created in partnership with the estate and the Jean-Michel Basquiat: King Pleasure exhibition, which is currently on display at The Grand LA.