Black Artist & Scientist Spotlight Series February 2023

In celebration and recognition of Black History Month, INCUBATOR Art Lab is pleased to announce the launch of our Black Artist and Scientist Spotlight series curated by MFA student Garvin Chinnia! We will be featuring the achievements and projects of Artists and Scientists throughout the Black Diaspora within our local and expanded community over the course of the next year.

The Black Artist and Scientist Spotlight is built on the success of Mariama Henry’s (2022/2023 Bioart Technician) initiative to create a Black History Newsletter in February 2022. Mariama has since moved on to her PhD in Integrative and Evolutionary Biology at the University of Southern California. In conversation with Henry and Chinnia, the Black Artist and Scientist Spotlight series was born.

Garvin Chinnia, “A thread I have found while speaking to other members of the Black Diaspora is that Black History Month is crammed with an overwhelming amount of content. As such, it is easy for members of our community to be overwhelmed with the onslaught of what’s where’s when’s and who to see. There just isn’t enough time in a month. Compounded with this, the successes and contributions of our community are forgotten again by the wider public until the following February. In this series, we intend to rectify that issue by featuring Black artists, scientists, historians, throughout our newsletter run throughout the year. Let’s make this black history year!

I find myself thinking of the future, and the Black Diaspora’s place in it. I admit that I find that future harder and harder to imagine, with anxieties about wars, climatological disaster, economic instability. I find during times like these, my anxieties are assuaged by the concept of Afrofuturism. Works by the late Octavia E Butler, a sci-fi author, or seeing Avery Brooks portrayal of Captain Benjamin Sisko on Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, shows that the Black Diaspora has a pivotal role to play in the future of humanity, as we always have, and will continue to do so.”

Mariama Henry, “It is wonderful to see the expansion of the Black History Month Newsletter into a spotlight series highlighting the works, accomplishments, of black artists and scientists from within and outside the Windsor/Essex region.

Having spearheaded the first Black History Month Newsletter for INCUBATOR Art Lab in February 2022 allowed for an open a discussion regarding a lack of diversity and underrepresentation of ethnic/visible minorities in the art world. As well as applying and finding ways to break down barriers to be more inclusive in the artistic community. In my editorial statement from last year's Black History Month Newsletter I spoke about unearthing the unseen, to shed light on the remarkable yet unrecognized work from BIPOC artists. To highlight the work, talents of unrecognized black artists and scientists is vitally important to the future and establishing ways where we can celebrate all accomplishments while eliminating the sense of invisibility and the overshadowing of prominent artists and scientists. Moving forward, this spotlight series is a good step in the right direction. Promoting equality, inclusivity and representation of the 'unseen'; underrepresented/marginalized and racialized communities.

Looking forward to reading and learning more about the stories highlighted in the Black Artists and Scientist spotlight series!! Black History is part of global history and should be celebrated throughout the year.”

Stay tuned to future INCUBATOR Art Lab newsletters for the Black Artist and Scientist Spotlight!

And if you have any suggested artists or scientists for us to spotlight email us at: