Using editorial narrative, Marley Nichelle’s Ghana to Gullah takes the viewer on the artist’s journey from Ghana back to their home in the low country of South Carolina, in order to document and educate others on the history of Gullah culture. Serving as a platform to amplify the Gullah peoples, the curated selection of images featured in this exhibition highlight the roots of Ghanaian and Gullah culture ranging from the foods they eat, the music they embrace, the standards and morals they live by, the traditions, the connections in their trauma back to slavery, and the resilience and liberation where they continue to fight and thrive to this present day.
Inspired by their first trip to Winneba, Ghana with the City of Charlottesville, Nichelle embarked on a multimedia documentation project, Geechie Marley Experience, to relate the story of their people and their culture. The Gullah Geechie people are one of the oldest surviving African American communities in the United States and are the descendants of West and Central Africans who were enslaved and brought to North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, and Florida. Isolated to coastal plantations, sea and barrier islands, the Gullah peoples were able to preserve and hold onto their West African linguistics, culture, and lifestyle.
This experience was created as a means of flipping the narratives on our preconceived understandings of Gullah/Geechie culture and to serve as a pathway to heal from their experienced traumas as a Gullah native in Charlottesville, VA. This film celebrates the richness of the self-sufficient communities of the Gullah/Geechie people while grounding their modern day practices to their ancestral roots. Ghana to Gullah invites the viewer to consider society’s responsibility and accountability to the preservation of culture. They hope to contribute to the continued legacy of healing, liberation, solidarity, and consciousness toward the realities of Black and Brown peoples by showing culture first and race second.
This event is FREE and open to the public, but registration is required.