For Black History Month, CEED would like to present to you the documentary film made by the interns of the Video Documentary Project (VDOC) in 2020, featuring Mushagalusa Chigoho, founder of an African art space in Montreal. The documentary interviews Chigoho and puts the spotlight on the BIPOC performers and artists that present their art at his gallery.
Former Internship Coordinator Josie Fomé and the Project Coordinator for the VDOC Project in 2020 explains the significance of focusing on Black people’s success rather than their struggles:
In an act of resistance, black people continue to seek and chase joy; these stories also need to be amplified. Thus, exploring the role of black community workers, black people in succeeding in their respective fields, and the everyday life of a black person is an act of resilience.
CEED Concordia’s launched VDOC in 2020 aims to shift the narrative surrounding Black people and people of colour. Since its conception, VDOC Project selects a cohort of students to take part in the VDOC internship project in which they are responsible to tell the story of BIPOC people using the documentary form and putting a positive spotlight on BIPOC people.
Espace Mushagalusa documentary does just that. It focuses on the positive. On an African Montrealer. On the African diaspora. On black art. Former 2020 VDOC intern Xavier Hovington-Dupuis wrote this synopsis about the documentary :
In several African languages […] the word art does not exist”. This documentary is the intertwined story of the founder of the Espace Mushagalusa in Montreal and the spirits that inhabit his home. A captivating and personal archive, it leads to the discovery of one of the many individuals who promote the black cultures of the island of Tiohtià: ke.
On top of the negative portrayal of BIPOC people in the media, the under-representation of Black folks in the Canadian media landscape is equally harmful. The history that Canada holds with black people runs deep. Montreal used to be an endpoint for runaway American slaves, and second, to Toronto, Montreal has the largest population of black people in Canada. Yet, black stories remain scarce. There are still many untold stories to tell and CEED is proud to play a part in empowering BIPOC voices through documentary film.
You can check out the full documentary below: