OMCA's Black Panther Exhibit Continues Through Black History Month 2017

Posted by Billyjam, February 6, 2017 09:18pm | Post a Comment

Fittingly the Oakland Museum of California's (OMCA) 50 year anniversary retrospective on the  Black Panthers, that opened a few months back in October 2016, will continue through this month of February: Black History Month 2017.  Entitled All Power to the People: Black Panthers at 50 the popular exhibit's final day will be will be just a couple of days shy of the month's end on Feb. 26th when there is a special closing night party for OMCA members. If you have not already checked out this exhibit on the history of the homegrown Oakland revolutionary group you really should do so over the upcoming three weeks. Additionally be sure to read Rickey Vincent's insightful book Party Music on the Black Panthers little known house band The Lumpen who only released one record: the single “Free Bobby Now." Most likely for sale in the OMCA gift shop/book store, the 2014 published book and its author were profiled here on the Amoeblog three years ago during that year's Black History Month.  Meanwhile for their ongoing exhibit, OMCA's curators have set about presenting a balanced, fair, contemporary view of the Panther Party and "its aims to serve oppressed people and fight injustice." This they accomplish with an engaging gallery exhibit that portrays Black Panther members of both genders  with a variety of historical pieces on display. These include many very rare historical artifacts, never-before-seen photographs, first-person accounts from former Panthers, scholars, and community members, and contemporary art show how the Party continues to influence culture and activism locally, nationally, and internationally.

As accurately noted by the Oakland museum's curators of the often misunderstood and/or inaccurately portrayed political/social group, who did an awful lot of grassroots community work, "Many still fear the Panthers and are unaware of their motivations and intent. Former Panthers admit some mistakes and acknowledge that their image as militants cast a negative shadow on their legacy." From a hip-hop perspective the Panthers played a key role with many of their members' offsprings becoming part of the later generation hip-hop movement. These included Boots Riley of The Coup, Money B of Raw Fusion and Digital Underground, and of course his DU co-member Tupac Shakur. Meanwhile militant Bay Area rapper Paris took both his alias (black panther of rap) and his logo from the famous Oakland founded Panthers.

Tagged as "an exhibition for the people" All Power to the People: Black Panthers at 50 will be on exhibit at OMCA through Feb. 26th 2017. Tickets and more detailed museum information

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Black History Month (134), Black History Month 2017 (1), Black Panthers (4), Omca (15), Rickey Vincent (6)