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April 23, 2015

Art Sanctuary celebrates black writing with month of events

The 31st annual festival includes live shows, exhibits, storytelling

Events Festivals
CBW2014 Art Sanctuary/for PhillyVoice

Carvin Haggins, Ivan Barrias, Valerie Gay and Kenny Gamble at the 2014 CBW Lifetime Achievement Awards.

The year's biggest literary festival returns for its 31st year as the Celebration of Black Writing begins May 1. Throughout the month of May, Art Sanctuary will host live events, workshops and award ceremonies to honor Philadelphia's black artists and writers.

It all begins with a month-long exhibit of Barkley Hendricks' work called "Oh, Snap!" featuring rarely seen pieces by the artist. The contemporary painter and Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts alum is known for his realist and post-modern portraiture as well as for photography. The exhibit is free. 

CBW joins in the South Street Spring Fest on May 2. Art Sanctuary will have its own corridor set up near 2nd and South with authors and their works, activities for children and pop-up performances.

Each Wednesday the Art Sanctuary will host special events, like an opening reception for "Oh, Snap!" and editions of their "In the Sanctuary" series featuring live interviews and readings with authors of color. 

Black Professionals Got Talent will liven things up on May 8 as the area's most talented peers take the stage for a night. Art Sanctuary's youth and community programs Hip H'opera and North Stars will star in a live showcase May 15 at the Church of the Advocate. Temple University will host the Literary & Arts Conference on May 23 which will feature some of Philly's biggest authorsfounder of the Harlem Book Fair Max Rodriguez, workshops, live performances and film screenings. 

The month culminates in "The Oscars of Black Writing," Art Sanctuary's Lifetime Achievement Awards Show on May 29. Jacqueline Woodson will be given the Award for Excellence in Literature, Kindred the Family Soul will take home the Gamble and Huff Award for Excellence in Songwriting and Barkley Hendricks will be awarded the Lifetime Achievement Award for Excellence in Visual Literacy.

Celebration of Black Writing

Friday, May 1 through Sunday, May 31
Times and locations vary
Art Sanctuary
628 S. 16th St.
(215) 232-4485