In 1974, Marilyn Nance was the official photographer of the Second World Black and African Festival of Arts and Culture, aka FESTAC ‘77, a month-long event that engaged 17,000 participant performers from 56 African nations and the African Diaspora in a celebration of music, art, literature, drama, dance, and spirituality. Her recently released book Last Day in Lagos is an impressive record and reflection on this historic experience. Meet Marilyn Nance and learn about this extraordinary festival. Book edited by Oluremi C. Onabanjo and published by The Center for Art, Research and Alliances (CARA). This event is presented in partnership with Reparations Club.
About Marilyn Nance: Over the course of five decades, Marilyn Nance has produced photographs of unique moments in the cultural history of the US and the African Diaspora, culminating in an archive of images of late-twentieth-century African American life. A two-time finalist for the W. Eugene Smith Award in Humanistic Photography, Nance is a recipient of a 2022 Magnum Foundation Counter Histories Grant and 2023 New York State Council of the Arts Individual Artists Grant. Her work is in the collections of the Art Institute of Chicago, the Brooklyn Museum of Art, the Museum of Modern Art, the Smithsonian American Art Museum, the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture, the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts (VMFA) and the Library of Congress, and has been published in The World History of Photography, History of Women in Photography and The Black Photographers Annual.
While serving as the photographer for the US delegation of the FESTAC ‘77, Nance made one of the most comprehensive photographic accounts of the Second World Festival of Black and African Arts and Culture. In 2022, she published Marilyn Nance: Last Day in Lagos, a focused study of the artist through an archival encounter with her documentation of FESTAC '77.