I have been told that I am an engaging public speaker and I am excited to share that I have recently become one of the feminist speakers at Soapbox Inc. I will get to share my work that intersects arts & culture, food security, radical education and healing work in a larger context!
I was honored to be featured in In Wild Air (VOLUME VI | EDITION LXI), a weekly newsletter featuring six interesting things selected by an interesting guest.
Check out the excerpt below, and read the full piece here.
Shamans, Healers, and Griots
Shamans, healers and griots have held culture and stories of communities for centuries. In a world of big data and technology, I am constantly contemplating the place that these archetypes have in the contemporary canon. The urban shaman understands the chaotic often times unexplainable energy of the environment and can point out ways to reframe our experiences so that we feel more connected. VUCA ( which stands for Volatility, Uncertainty, Complexity and Ambiguity) seems to represent this transitional time between the beginning of this technological age and the age of full integrated human knowledge. The urban healer—such as myself—looks at organizations and groups the way a holistic doctor approaches the body: as complex systems operating on an external and internal level as well as from micro to macro and back and forth. In order to address root cause, we must first establish the pain, trauma and imbalance. Within organizations, I find that when our systems remain inequitable and based on a unilateral power structure we cannot possibly benefit from shared and integrated learning and therefore holistic problem solving. And finally urban griots exist to listen first, to observe and pay attention to the signs of the time and to accurately, passionately and skillfully deliver stories and qualitative data that allows for comprehensive decision making that evolve cultural and societal norms.
As we continue to merge with technology, our brains, actions and thought processes shifting, it is the healer, the shaman and the griot who will ultimately tell us what it means to be human and act as the witness while creating the moral and ethical lexicon. I am always on the lookout for my tribe, when we see each other there is a greeting in our concrete jungles and urban surroundings that allows us to know that we feel, think and breathe the people, the place and the universal truths that exist all around and through us.
Happy new year !
2017 was been filled with so many moments of great joy, intense sadness and learning opportunities. I have been committed to self care, not as a specific set of activities but rather a way of life. I forgive myself, accept my imperfections and hone in on my purpose. The most engaged discussions have involved themes of sustainable tourism, radical hospitality, the role of artists in present society, the world of cryptocurrency, the need for self care for folks of color and those on the front lines, solidarity economy, how to hold space in changing communities and finally a 2018 campaign for supporting black female leaders of color ... this year the life of self care will continue and I will begin single tasking, narrowing and focusing concentrations of energy to be fully present in all that I do. I will build in more thinking and processing time to explore my inner world and respond with intention.
Living My Values
Living my values means being my whole self and using the learning experiences to refine my approach, understand my leadership style and act with care. I use my badge of motherhood as a badge of honor to showcase how qualified I am to handle complex projects with high degrees of change. The two influence each other and the more I am supported in either or both spheres, the better I am able to be successful and contribute to society in deeper and more meaningful ways.
Parenting is a never ending job, I am always humbled by how much I learn about myself and their ever changing needs. The role of mother has prepared me to lead, care and engage with artists at the residency and better understand the complexities of organizations I partner with. As they shift and grow, I reflect on their accomplishments and as my Maw Maw would say, "catch em doing something good...."
NO DEAD ARTISTS is an international open call for artists, open to living artists of all ages, emerging and established, working throughout the world. All mediums are accepted including, but not limited to, painting, sculpture, design, glass, metalwork, photography, video, performance, mixed media and installation art.
I was honored to be a juror for NO DEAD ARTISTS 2017 along with Helen Toomer (New York, NY) and Bettina Stiewe (San Francisco/Bay Area, CA).
An intergenerational dialogue of black women builders and developers of physical and digital space.
This discourse seeks to address the importance of brick and mortar spaces in areas of displacement while claiming digital realms to create new languages of expression and archiving revisionist narratives. Narrated and hosted by Gia M. Hamilton, a non-profit developer, scholar, curator and healer. With Panelists Carla Williams, Whitney Mitchell and Shanti Broom.
YEP and Ace Hotel present "Queens of New Orleans". This is an exhibition following the calendar project of the same name by Youth Empowerment Project and Three Keys. The Queens of New Orleans calendar showcases twelve queens in our community, many of them mothers, caretakers, advocates – roles often minimized in our society. This exhibition celebrates these queens and the hope for a future where women, girls and female-identifying persons have the agency and power to live as freely and as magnificently as they please. It will be ongoing until June 30.
The official opening event was held Friday April 23 2017. The first segment was a panel discussion entitled "Inside Voices" about black women leading in digital and physical spaces. Panelists included: Whitney Mitchell, Carla Williams, & Shanti Broome.
Following the discussion was a photography experience hosted by DeOrin Payme called Visual Alchemy. Based out of New Orleans and spanning all over the world, it is a sensory journey for all to take part. Originally from California, DeOrin has been creating with the medium of photography since childhood and professionally, since 2009. He relocated to New Orleans in 2012 after visiting and falling in love with the culture of the city.
The goal of Visual Alchemy is to capture the beauty of nature and the cultures of the world, while telling stories in order to bring empathy with the subjects.
"In April 1996, the Jazz Architectural Workshop (JAWS) convened at Tulane University in New Orleans to consider work in progress in the field of African-American architectural history, theory, criticism, and practice. Nathaniel Belcher, assistant professor of architecture at Tulane, convened JAWS to 'illuminate political and pedagogical issues at stake in the self-conscious articulation of an African-American architectural discourse'.
During the spring of 2016, JAWS 2 hopes to continue the discourse begun 21 years ago. We draw inspiration and talent from architecture, urban design, planning, landscape architecture, urban studies, art, music, activism, community development, communications, political science and other disciplines. JAWS 2 aspires to raise consciousness of emerging work in these fields through an antiracist intersectional feminist lens."
And we’re back! We are so excited to share that we will be hosting our artist talk series Roll Back, Say That featuring the south-side Chicago braiding queen, Shani Crowe on January 28th in New Orleans! Stop by at 1:00 p.m. for a live art presentation of her “Braids” series and an intimate discussion moderated by the cultural practitioner and entrepreneur, Gia Hamilton.
If unfamiliar, Shani Crowe is the designer of Solange‘s epic head piece look during her live performance on NBC’s Saturday Night Live. Having a deep appreciation for her culture and the royalty of her roots, Shani uses her hair braiding techniques to honor her heritage and celebrate Black feminine beauty.
We’re inspired and filled with excitement to share with you the work and voice of the phenomenal Shani Crowe in just a few weeks!
We will be hosting our artist talk series ROLL BACK, SAY THAT featuring the New Orleans native, Lorna Williams and her “in’hərənt lore” show with moderation by the cultural practitioner and entrepreneur, Gia Hamilton in an intimate setting of 50 people. The figurative artist, Lorna Williams, has showcased her work through the country, displaying her collection of pieces made from a variety of materials. With bold expression, Lorna is known for using materials seen frequently throughout the day such as, tree branches, paper, clay, feathers, bones and so on using her own body as inspiration.
We’re already inspired and filled with excitement to share with you the work of two phenomenal artists and visionaries on November 5th! In the mean time, Lorna Williams work as well as her long list of raving reviews can be found on her site.
Streamed live on Oct 7, 2016
Video & Sound, Intermedia, and the MFA in Visual Studies programs are excited to present a lecture from Gia Hamilton, Director of the Joan Mitchell Center in New Orleans, LA on Friday, October 7 from 6:00-7:30 p.m. in the Mediatheque at PNCA. This lecture is free and open to the public.
Hamilton’s talk will focus on the intersectionality of her work.
In “Gris Gris Lab: Magic making in communities,” Hamilton examines community work through the lens of art, food, healing and education in her incubator space Gris Gris Lab. Hamilton looks at the genealogy of her work as a practitioner healing a body- each space, project and community are carefully listened to, cared for, and responded to using a variety of tools, in this instance the curator embodies the role of caregiver in the most holistic sense and explores safe space, intimacy in public spaces, and tool kits for sustainability.
Watch as director Gia Hamilton leads a tour of the Joan Mitchell Center, a $12.5 million artist retreat that will open in the 7th Ward on Saturday (Aug 22). Select artists from New Orleans and across the country will soon be working and living on th
Watch as director Gia Hamilton leads a tour of the Joan Mitchell Center, a $12.5 million artist retreat that will open in the 7th Ward on Saturday (Aug 22). Select artists from New Orleans and across the country will soon be working and living on the poperty
Gia M. Hamiliton Curating at The Joan Mitchell Center of for Community Coffee 5.13.15. Filmed by: Upendo na Kushindana for Interworldfilmz.
Panel Speakers: Russ RuBert, Jamie Bennett, Moy Eng, Gia Hamilton
From October 1-4, 2014, approximately 250 sculptors and sculpture enthusiasts from all around the world gathered in New Orleans, Louisiana for the ISC’s 24th International Sculpture Conference: Sculpture, Culture, and Community. The event brought together ISC members, non-members, artists, arts administrators, curators, city planners, educators, art supporters, and students
Gris Gris Lab (pronounced Gree-Gree) redefines the concept of magic in contemporary society and examines transformational living, intentional community and creative expression as a powerful means to healing. Gris Gris Lab offers dynamic programming, non traditional healing services, space rental and creative consulting services.