Every year in October, events take place across the UK to celebrate Black History Month. This annual observance was founded in the US in 1970, and first took place in the UK in 1987, offering the chance to spotlight the contributions of Black people to our country’s history. Here, we highlight some of the exhibitions, talks and performances taking place across the UK for 2022.
Black History Month 2022: Events Guide
Bernardine Evaristo: Manifesto on Never Giving Up, Warwick
In 2019, author Bernardine Evaristo became the first Black woman to win the Booker Prize for her novel Girl, Woman, Other. In a live event at Warwick Arts Centre, listeners can hear about her journey first-hand. Evaristo will discuss her memoir, Manifesto, which delves into her heritage and childhood, and looks into issues surrounding race, class, feminism and ageing.
9 October 2022, 6pm, warwickartscentre.co.uk
Intimate Archives at the Horniman, London
Learn about African diasporic social experiments, rituals and hair care practices at the Horniman’s show, Intimate Archives. Curated by Rambisayi Marufu, the exhibition brings together a range of personal and found collections, featuring work from Gelila Negussie, Olivia Ema, Ebun Oduwole and Foluke Taylor.
Until November 2022, horniman.ac.uk
Ballet Black at the Gala Theatre, Durham
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To mark its 20th anniversary, dance company Ballet Black will present two new works at Durham’s Gala Theatre. Say it Loud, choreographed and directed by Ballet Black’s Founder Cassa Pancho, charts the company’s history, while Black Sun by South African choreographer Gregory Maqoma explores the power of the sun and the moon.
28 October 2022, galadurham.co.uk
The Anchor, The Drum, The Ship, Gladstone Park, London
A new public work from artist Harun Morrison is being unveiled in London this month, which will stand as the capital’s first transatlantic slave trade memorial. Positioned in Gladstone Park in Dollis Hill, the horticultural installation – titled The Anchor, The Drum, The Ship – will see three flower beds shaped like the Akan (the Ghanain symbol for a Double Drum), a ship and an anchor, representing themes of Black migration and belonging.
The work will be unveiled on 14 October 2022
Transforming Legacies, Black Cultural Archives, London
As part of its Black History Month season, titled Black Futures: Our Time is Now, Black Cultural Archives (BCA) will host an exhibition on the last 40 years of Black British art. Titled Transforming Legacies, the show will bring together a collection of artists across ceramics, painting, film and performance, exploring the way art history is portrayed and understood. Artists featuring include Ajamu Ikwe-Tyehimba, Karis Beaumont and Enam Gbewonyo.
28 October – 31 January 2022, blackculturalarchives.org
Paving the Way Workshop, Museum of London
A workshop taking place at the Museum of London will spotlight inspiring Black women throughout history. Run by social enterprise The Heritage and Honour Collection, the session will see attendees hearing the stories of lesser-known women who have made their mark on the capital, followed by a creative writing exercise based on their learnings.
15 and 22 October 2022, museumoflondon.org.uk
Poets Corner, Canary Wharf, London
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Watch and listen to a line-up of talented British artists in Canary Wharf, who will be sharing poems and stories about the Black experience. Names taking part include Nigerian-British author Sarah Aluko and Young People’s Laureate Theresa Lola, with performances starting at 1pm and lasting for 30 minutes.
Saturdays during October 2022, canarywharf.com
Brixton Black Farmers Market, London
South London local Natasha Pencil has been selling her own Caribbean-inspired small batch condiments since 2018 – and now she is organising an event to help showcase other sellers in the Black community. Taking place around Brixton Station Road and POP Brixton, the market will spotlight Black-owned food growers – from Coco Collective and Black Rootz, plus street food stalls like the Green Elephant Cafe. Other activities on offer will include street zumba and face painting.
9 October 2022, eventbrite.com
Main image: Transforming Legacies at BCA, Ryan Prince