Into the Afrofuture
Two leaders of the Black Speculative Arts Movement talk about their new collaboration with N Square—and what Afrofuturism brings to the task of envisioning a nuclear threat-free future.
Interview by Jenny Johnston / June 28, 2021
Not long ago, as part of a public art project in Pittsburgh, Afrofuturist Alisha Wormsley mounted a billboard atop a commercial building. It featured just seven words, big bright letters on a dark background: “THERE ARE BLACK PEOPLE IN THE FUTURE.” Incredibly, the sign was deemed too provocative and quickly dismantled. But what can’t be dismantled is the burgeoning artistic movement that Wormsley’s words represent. Afrofuturism is an aesthetic practice involving vast numbers of Black artists and creatives whose work envisions futures rich with African heritage and sci-fi futurism. Their work challenges the dominance of Eurocentric worldviews—and it’s creating a groundswell of ideas, agency, and optimism for the future in Black communities worldwide.