Images: Carl Joe Williams, Waiting, 2016. Mixed media on mattress. Petrucci Family Foundation; Bob Thompson, Garden of Music, 1960. Oil on canvas. The Ella Gallup Sumner and Mary Catlin Sumner Collection Fund, Wadsworth Atheneum Museum of Art; Romare Bearden, The Lamp, 1984. Lithograph. The Amistad Center for Art & Culture.

Encounters invites your participation in a fall program of facilitated dialogues centered around the lives and histories of black and indigenous peoples, in the Greater Hartford region and beyond. Each session will introduce participants to powerful and provocative ideas, encourage self-reflection on questions of personal and public importance, promote respectful exchange across different views and perspectives, and bring scholarly and community interests and expertise into meaningful conversation. Come to one, two or all three and lend your voice to the dialogue. As always, events are free, open to all, and food is provided. We hope to see you there!

Encounters: Uncovering Black and Indigenous Histories

Saturday, September 21, 10am-12pm with lunch to follow
Hartford History Center, 3rd Floor
Hartford Public Library, 500 Main Street, Hartford, CT
RSVP to jeagosto@hplct.org

Who gets remembered? The Ancient Burying Ground is a state historical treasure whose many headstones commemorate leaders of Connecticut’s colonial past. More than 500 Africans, African Americans and Native Americans found their final resting place there, too, and yet rarely are they remembered by a personal grave marker. Join us for a small group discussion exploring the history of the Ancient Burying Ground and learn about the lives of Black and indigenous people interred there and their genealogical connections to our present community. Lunch will be provided with free registration.

Please read the following selections prior to attending:
– Narratives from the Ancient Burying Ground:
– The Natives of America by Ann Plato (1841)

Encounters: Public Punishment, Race, and Remembrance

Saturday, October 12, 10am-12pm with lunch to follow
Old State House, 800 Main Street, Hartford, CT
RSVP to rebecca.taber-conover@cga.ct.gov

What does the history of punishment in Connecticut mean for us today? For twenty years, a reproduction stock and pillory have stood on the west side of Connecticut’s Old State House. Without any signage or description, myths and inaccurate information have grown up around them. But they have also spurred meaningful reflection on public punishment and its effects on individuals and communities. What, then, were stocks and pillories actually used for? Who was punished with such items? As historical artifacts, how do they affect passersby; and what unspoken messages do museums convey to people by displaying such devices with no explanation? Join us for a facilitation dialogue on the subjects of state punishment, the display of instruments of public humiliation, and the relationship between our museums and communities. Lunch will be provided with free registration.

Encounters: Afrocosmologies

Saturday, November 9, 10am-12pm with lunch to follow
Wadsworth Atheneum, 600 Main Street, Hartford, CT
RSVP to faculty@wadsworthatheneum.org

What do the visual arts reveal about African-based religions and practices among the diaspora and in the Americas? In turn, how do those religions and practices influence black artists, past and present? What place does Hartford have in Afrocosmologies? Join us for a morning of facilitated conversation as we dive into these questions, explore the exhibition Afrocosmologies: American Reflections, and dialogue with neighbors and scholarly experts. Lunch will be provided with free registration.