Tubman will be celebrated with sculpture

Submitted photo/Wesley Wofford
“Harriet Tubman, Journey to Freedom” bronze sculpture by Wesley Wofford

CAMBRIDGE — Day of Resilience 2020 is being organized by Alpha Genesis, CDC with support from the Constituency for Africa (CFA), Dorchester County, and the City of Cambridge. The event will be held on Sept. 12, beginning at noon.

Several events will be held on the Dorchester County courthouse green on High Street from noon-1:30 p.m., followed by the CFA Town Hall on Africa from 3-5 p.m. The courthouse program will be streamed live for home viewing. The event will close with a jazz concert from 6-8 p.m. at the Harriet Tubman mural in Cannery Way, featuring Washington DC jazz artist Linda Harris.

The highlight of the event is the unveiling of a 9-foot, 2,400 pound bronze sculpture entitled “Harriet Tubman: Journey to Freedom”, that depicts Harriet confidently leading a slave girl on The Underground Railroad to freedom, by internationally recognized artist Wesley Wofford. This sculpture will be a temporary outdoor exhibit at the courthouse on High Street and will remain on exhibit until Oct. 9.

“There is a lot of embedded symbolism within the narrative of the piece” states Wofford. “The contours of the base represent the Maryland/Delaware Peninsula, where Harriet was enslaved, eventually escaped, and continued to return for her freedom raids. The dramatic step up/cut is the Pennsylvania state line, and they are stepping out of the slave states to an elevated freedom. The dress is enveloping the young girl, billowing protectively like a flag, and is meant to represent all the legal protections afforded every United States citizen-a symbol of the future equality to come. Each hand on the sculpture signifies an attribute: Determination, Protection, Fear, and Trust. The slave girl is leaning out to get a better look at where Harriet is taking her with a look of trepidation on her face. She is gripping Harriet’s right arm tightly but her delicate finger grasp is cautiously hopeful. The girl is off balance and tentatively taking a step forward — her left foot precariously hanging off a cliff, illustrating the danger and peril of the journey. The shackles are broken and the atrocities of slavery are left forever behind.”

The finale of the unveiling ceremony includes a performance by the award winning Universal African Dance and Drum Ensemble from Camden, N.J.
Between programming, visitors are invited to view two exhibitions at the Dorchester Center for the Arts. “Portraits of Black Lives Lost: Showing Their Faces, Telling Their Stories” features paintings of those whose lives were ended by racial violence, and is presented by Artists for Justice.

A second, “I Am My Sister Dolls” features the culturally iconic handmade doll line of event organizer Adrian Green Holmes. The exhibits will be open from noon–6 p.m. at 321 High St. Guests may also visit the vendor area at Cannery Way from 1-8 p.m.

ADDITIONAL ACTIVITIES
Harriet Tubman Museum:
The Constituency for Africa (CFA) begins the 2020 Ronald Brown African Affairs Series in Cambridge. The virtual Harriet Tubman Town Hall on Africa will be broadcast from the Harriet Tubman Museum from 3-5 p.m.
Dr. Julianne Malveaux is the keynote speaker for the Harriet Tubman Town Meeting. Dr. Julius Garvey, the Honorable Robert Dussey, Foreign Minister of Togo, and Izmira Aitch, Legislative Assistant to Congresswoman Gwen Moore (D-Wis.), are among the speakers.
The Town Hall program includes a live creation of a Salt Art portrait by local artist Miriam Moran. This will be a global event on Zoom with participants from across the country and Africa. The building will not be open to the public, however a Zoom link will be provided.
In addition, from 2-2:45 p.m., CFA will organize a meeting for the young leaders in Cambridge, the “Youth Ambassadors” and the Bowtie Boys from Houston, Texas, to follow-up on a similar meeting last year, and the trip to Washington in February by a 30-person youth delegation that visited the embassies of Mali, Ghana and Rwanda for briefings.

Cannery Way Park:
Jazz concert fundraiser at the Harriet Tubman Mural featuring Washington DC Jazz Artist Linda Harris, 6-8 p.m. Harris has performed in France, Sweden, Panama, New Orleans, New York, and South Carolina.
She holds fast to the words of Harriett Tubman – “I had reasoned this out in my mind, there was one of two things I had a right to – liberty or death”.
For more information visit AlphaGenesisCDC.org or on Facebook at the Day of Resilience.

Please note: both the opening ceremony and closing concert will have limited seating in order to adhere to all social distancing guidelines. Wrist bands, masks and temperature check will be required for each seated event.
For more information, contact Info@alphagenesiscdc.org.