CREATING A MOVEMENT
Finding Inspiration in Every Turn
The Black Speculative Arts Movement Canada is a brand and collective founded, created, and envisioned by Quentin VerCetty in 2016 as the northern branch of the entity movement that was established in the USA by Reynaldo Anderson.
The Black Speculative Arts Movement (BSAM) emerged out of the Unveiling Visions exhibition co-curated by John Jennings and Reynaldo Anderson at the Schomburg Center for the Study of Black Culture in New York City. Quentin VerCetty was the only Canadian artist featured in the exhibition and utilizing his community organizing experience helped to bring the movement across borders from Canada to internationally.
Quentin VerCetty sought to help established Afrofuturist artists in Canada to be connected to the growing movement and the international Afrofuturism (2.0) network and practitioners informing it as a scholarly praxis, concept, and holistic methodology.
As a branded convention and collective of Black creatives, BSAM Canada was first launched at OCAD University in Toronto, Ontario on October 21st with the support of Kareen Weir the first. The 3-day event had over 500 people in attendance and featured international guests: Dr. Reynaldo Anderson, Black Kirby (John Jennings and Stacey Robinson), Afrofuturist Affairs (Rasheedah Phillips and Moor Mother Goddess), Ytasha Womack, Dr. tobias c. van Veen, ZiggZaggerZ and many more. The success of the convention and creation of BSAM Canada was covered in an article on CBC and numerous media outlets.
The first BSAM Canada bilingual event was hosted at Concordia University in Montreal, Quebec, led by Quentin VerCetty and the preceding president of ACSION Sonet Tetdra Providence and was also covered by numerous media outlet due to it's high success such as the Canadian Broadcast Corporation Montreal and The Gazette.
By 2018 BSAM Canada had conducted several conventions, programs and projects across the country of Canada wherein the focus became centered on generating a school or institution for emerging artist to learn about how they can use Afrofuturism as a conceptual tool, theory or lens for their work.
BSAM INTERNATIONAL HISTORY
Black Speculative Art is a creative aesthetic practice that integrates African diasporic, metaphysics, science, and technology. The movement seeks to interpret, engage, design or alter reality for the re-imagination of the past, and the contested present, and act as a catalyst for the future. The BSAM convention was founded by associate professor and chair of the Humanities Department at Harris-Stowe State University, Dr. Reynaldo Anderson. BSAM is a term that represents a wide spectrum of areas of inquiry, from Afrofuturism, African Futurism, and Afro-Surrealism to Magical Realism and Science Fiction.
Quentin VerCetty worked very closely with Dr. Reynaldo Anderson playing a pivotal role in the international growth of BSAM. Quentin VerCetty they have travelled to participate in conventions, exhibitions and presentations across the USA and places like France, Germany and in the Caribbean.
In 2020 Quentin VerCetty assembled a book that would become Canada's first art book on Afrofuturism from a Canadian lens. He co-edited the book with Dr. Audrey Hudson entitled,
Cosmic Underground Northside: An Incantation of Black Canadian Speculative Discourse and Innerstandings
The book features significant contributions of poems, lyrics, proses, short stories, and other expressive forms of literature along with vibrant illustrations, photography, posters, mixed-media digital and analog rendered artworks by over 100 prolific, gifted Black Canadian scholars and creatives.
To continue to momentum of the Black Speculative Arts Movement Canada across Canada, Quentin VerCetty In 2022 Quentin VerCetty founded the AstroSankofa Arts Initiatives a social enterprise organization dedicated to supporting the activities of the BSAM Canada brand activities. AstroSankofa Arts Initiatives works to generate more opportunities for Black Canadian creatives working within the realm of Afrofuturism 2.0 through public art productions, exhibitions and conventions, and Web 3 activities such as the metaverse spaces and engaging with NonFungible Tokens (NFTs) and more.