Friday, September 01, 2006

DJ Hex Hector @ Sunday's WHIRLD / ATLAS Labor Day Event

2 Photography Exhibits @ Port City Java - Eastern Market

Speaking of Eastern Market, though I'm not sure how long it has been there it certainly was not across the street from the Eastern Market Complex a few months ago when I'd pass through the area. However, on Sunday, 27 August, when in the beginning stages of my Fall 2006 Eastern Market project that I'd observe a new coffeehouse at the corner of 7th Street and North Carolina Avenue, NE, remembering the old antique shop that had been there for many years which I had sometimes photographed I'd step inside to take note of how the space had been renovated.

One of the most unique coffeehouse that I've come across, in recent months, is the Ebenezers Coffeehouse which, located at the corner 2nd and and F Streets, in NE, is just a block east of Union Station. While its products are not unlike most other coffeehouses what makes Ebenezers unique is an auditorium and lounge area located in its basement and the fact that is has a connection the the National Community Church. While I'm not into the church thing I certainly may would like to photograph bands, musicians and other performers there. And, perhaps, exhibit some of some of my June 1997 and October 1997 Promise Keeeper rallies photographs at Ebenezer. Some which have never before been seen, since the negatives have not yet been processed.

Though I had photographed the construction process of the Ebenezers Coffeehouse since June of last year it has been since my Memorial Day 2006 visit to the Just Shoot Me opening I have compared any and all coffee shops to Ebenezer.

Let me say this, which may shed light on why I was more interested in how the space at 701 North Carolina Avenue had been renovated. Firstly, I have never had nor will I ever have any interest nor taste for coffee. Or Java. Nor expresso or whatever it is that most people find interesting, fasinating or addictive about jamoca. Secondly, and as I have expressed many times before not only do I have more than a passing interest in architecture but also in history and archeology. Which explains why I wanted to see how the old antique shop had been renovated. Such things have always been of interest to me. As such things have been of interest to many of the gay men that I have known and, in many casses, associated with.

Which is why in October 1978 I befriended and formed a relationship with Herb Lehner whom I made mentioned of in my previous posting pertaining to my beginnings on Capitol Hill.

In fact, when I'd post an image to flickr, some months back, of the then closed antique shop, a friend who alternates between living in Rehoboth and Fort Lauderdale would email me saying that one of his dearest friends had owned and operated the shop for years.

The third reason that I stepped inside of Port City Java on Sunday afternoon, 27 August, was to determine the logistics for a possible future photographic exhibition.

Before entering its front entrance situated at the corner of 7th Street and North Carolina Avenue, I'd snap a few photos of customers sitting out front on the spacious patio. Once inside, I'd observe that there were, at least, two distinct photography exhibitions displayed on the walls throughout Port City Java at Eastern Market.

The first that would catch my attention was that of Stephanie Zito entitled Portraits of Darfur. Who, in her statement, says "My hope hope is that the photos will introduce you to some [the] beauty - the colorful women, the playful children, the smiles of its people ..." which is in sharp contrast to the images that, in recent years, have been displayed throughout the world of the people of Darfur. To learn more about Stephanie Zito, the Wanderer, visit her website. Or contact her

The second is the work Barbara Johnson whose exhibition features portraits and landscapes of her travels throughout Europe and the SW United States. Her email is at

01 September 2006 Friday's Photo of the Week

Elvert Xavier Barnes Photography . Writings . Ads
If my memory serves me correctly I firsted visit Eastern Market in the fall of 1978 when after breaking up with Rick Allamong, my first partner, in late July of early August of that year that I met real estate developer Herb Lehner. And, as a result, have since taken more than a passing interest in Capitol Hill. By January 1, 1979, I had terminated my employment with the federal government and would join Herb Lehner Enterprises.
Though, at first, I kept my apartment on Queens Chapel Road in West Hyattsville by March of 1979 I relocated to Herb's house at 928 Maryland Avenue in NE. Which is where I managed the business and assisted with the renovation and redevlopment of several of his projects.
By June of 1979, I would attempt to purchase 1260 Holbrook Terrace, in the Trinidad area of NE WDC, from Mr. Lehner, which is where I move to and stayed until the fall of that year which was when I learned that the sewage system in the building was in need of such great repair that it was to my advantage that I resell the building to Isiah Foskey, a builder and bricklayer, also, based in the Captilol Hill area.
Shortly after our meeting, in the fall of 1978, Herb invited me to join him and his friends, Roger Tiemann and Al Mizer who were partners, at Eastern Market. In fact, to this day, I still have two African wood carvings and 3 large pictures that I purchased from Eastern Market in the fall of that year.
While I have often visited Eastern Market since then, whenever I have visited the compkex in the fall of the year, as was the case last October I will reflect on that Saturday or Sunday afternoon when Herb, Roger, Al and I meandered through Eastern Market which, for the first time, I would contemplate moving to Capitol Hill.
Built in 1873 and designed by architect Adolf Cluss, Eastern Market is the last of Washington's 19th century markets to remain in continuous operation. It is easily accessible by Metro and adjacent to numerous restaurants and shops in the picturesque Capitol Hill neighborhood.
The South Hall is the last remaining traditional market in Washington. Weekends are enlivened by an outdoor Farmers Market, the Market Festival, an Arts & Crafts Fair on Saturdays and The Flea Market at Eastern Market on Sundays. With all these attractions, Eastern Market has become an Internationally recognized destination.

Thursday, August 31, 2006

Trailer Premiere/Benefit Party to support MEHRET

The INTHEFRAY Newsletter August 31, 2006
Dear Reader,
INTHEFRAY is proud to co-sponsor the New York benefit party for MEHRET, a documentary chronicling a young doctor’s fight against HIV among black women. Dr. Mehret Mandefro’s mission takes her to the new frontlines of the AIDS crisis — the South Bronx and Ethiopia — where she uncovers what most women don’t say about intimate relationships and the deadly risk of that silence.
The benefit will be held Sept. 7 at 7:30 p.m., at Southpaw, 125 5th Ave., Park Slope, Brooklyn (718-230-0236).
The film’s trailer will premiere at the benefit, with screenings at 8:30 and 10 p.m. Musical entertainment will be provided by DJ Carol C of Si*Sé, Yah-Zeed & Preservation (with an original Mehret-inspired rhyme), and Tensae Berhanu (traditional Ethiopian sounds from the film’s composer). There will also be complimentary Ethiopian cuisine from the Queen of Sheba Restaurant and an open bar from 7:30 to 8:30 p.m.
Advance tickets are $10 and are available, along with directions, at Tickets are $15 at the door.
Raffle prizes will include gifts from Brooklyn Industries, Lancôme, and The Colbert Report. The first 100 guests will receive special gift bags.
Although HIV is no longer a death sentence, there is still no cure. MEHRET is about AIDS, but it is not a tragedy; it is a story of resilience, courage, and activism. Please join us in supporting this important work.
—The Editors
P.S. Please spread the word!

Tuesday, August 29, 2006

Rally for Public Safety & Against Gun Violence . WDC . 27 August 2006

The International Action Network on Small Arms is the global network of civil society organisations working to stop the proliferation and misuse of small arms and light weapons (SALW). World attention is increasingly focused on the humanitarian impact of these weapons, and IANSA brings together the voices and activities of non-governmental organisations (NGOs) and concerned individuals across the world to prevent their deadly effects.

In January 2006 the Ontario Premier Dalton McGuinty announced a $51M program to fight gun violence. Prompted by the shooting death of 15-year-old bystander Jane Creba in a Boxing Day gunfight on Yonge Street Creba's death, which occurred in the midst of a federal election campaign, brought the issue of gun violence in Canada's largest city into sharp focus. Where fifty-two of Toronto's 78 homicides in 2005 involved guns.

In an effort to address the issues of public safety and gun violence affecting the District of Columbia, all mayoral, council chair, and council at large candidates were invited to Freedom Plaza on Sunday, 27 August 2006, from 10 am until 6 pm to a Rally for Public Safety and Against Gun Violence during which time Kenneth E. Barnes, Sr. CEO and Founder of ROOT Inc. presented findings from research that indicate youth affected by gun violence and homocide are not receiving proper intervention to address these issues.

In fact, it had been the week before that Mr. Barnes and an unprecidented coalition of concerned groups would hold Congressional Hearings on Capitol Hill with several Congressional staffers pertaining to the same findings. It had also been in January 2005 that Mr. Barnes would give a similar testimony at the Joint Public Oversight Hearing on Juvenile Homicides in the District of Columbia. And as he would do, again, in December 2005 at the Council Of The District Of Columbia Public Oversight Hearing, Special Committee On The Prevention Of Youth Violent Crime.

In January 2006 ROOT, Inc proclaimed the month of January Guns Aside month in the District of Columbia. During which time and reaching more than 2000 students, ROOT hosted Guns Aside Assemblies with the entire student bodies of several schools in Washington, DC.

On 30 -31 Janaury 2006 ROOT hosted two youth forums at the University of the District of Columbia on January 30 and 31, at which, over 400 youth were in attendance from Anacostia High School, Charles Hart Middle School, Patricia R. Harris Educational Center, Boys and Girls Club of Germantown, and Oak Hill Academy.

IANSA Director, Rebecca Peters says that 'Gun violence is a human rights issue,'. When commenting on why he had met with Congressional staffers on Capitol Hill and why he has made his fight a national campaign, Kenneth Barnes, Founder and CEO of ROOT, says "... gun violence is a matter of public safety. Not just in DC and America, but, throughout the world.'

Though I did not attend the entire event when I did arrive near its conclusion Anthony Murrill, founder of X2Rep (Time To Represent), was on stage and engaging in a 'call and response' with a young boy vowed to "stay away from guns".

Monday, August 28, 2006

Uppity Negro

During Sunday Photo Walk on 27 August 2006 through Eastern Market I'd happen upon several vendors that I wish to bring attention to. And as I walk, proudly, in solidarity with the cause, Uppity Negro, is the first Eastern Market exhibitor that I will feature.

Founded by Andrea Carter, Uppity Negro, which is trademarked, is not a fashion line. Uppity Negro is statement. Uppity Negro is a form of personal as well economic resistance to combat the subtle, covert, and routine acts of racism that Black people experience.

Which is something that I speak about and shed light on through my photojournalism and blogs at Freedom, Louder Than Words and former Photographically Speaking blogs

Andrea Carter created "Uppity Negro" T-shirts to inspire Black people to stand up and be unapologetic and audacious attention. To order Uppity Negro or Uppity Negress t-shirts, hats, totes or mugs visit the Uppity Negro online store.

While t-shirts emblazed with "Uppity Negro" certainly will spark conversation to Andrea Cater, they, also, represent a vehicle for change.

The flyer that Andrea would hand me, asks "Are you an UN?". And without apologies, I proudly proclaim that I am, indeed, an 'uppity negro'!

Law Enforcement "With These Hands" . Demo #1