Ellen M. Blalock quilt, video photography artist installation, and performance.
Event: “No Innocence This Side of the Womb” Feb.28, 2019
Panel: South Africa to Syracuse – A Common Struggle 5 PM
Ellen M. Blalock, originally from Philadelphia, PA, has lived in Syracuse, NY most of her life. She works as a journalist, documentarian and narrative artist.
Ms. Blalock worked at Advance Media New York (syracuse.com and The Post-Standard) for more than 20 years till 2018. She served as a multi-media journalist and assignment/photo editor covering everything from news to sports and fashion to community.
Ms. Blalock is interested in telling the stories of underrepresented people, especially the voices from the African diaspora and urban life. As a narrative artist, she does this. She has worked on several projects over the last 20 years: The Fathers’ Project (photo portraits and video of African American teen fathers living in Syracuse), CAGE (quilts and video installation on Black man and Syracuse killings), Central New York LGBT families (photo portrait series) and Not Crazy (quilt series addressing trauma and mental health in the African American community).
In 2018, Ms. Blalock traveled to Dagahaley, the world’s largest refugee camp in Kenya, to document Salat Ali’s return to reunite with his mother and brothers. Now, Ms. Blalock works to create vehicles of visual and oral communication to narrate the lives of people that need to be heard and listened to. She listens, records and makes available the voices and stories of what is missing. Blalock has an MFA from Syracuse University in Art and Media Studies and a BFA from Temple in photography.
Confronting issues of equality, privilege, and justice will be the focus of this evening experience hosted by the Newhouse Center for Global Engagement and Syracuse University. The afterlife of slavery, apartheid, and colonialism runs deep. South Africa and the United States share the struggle to build a better future while being honest about our present, as well as our past.