• TILA Studios

Empowering the Whole Woman: Black Female Bodies, Motherhood and Art

We were in full bloom at the EmpowerHER Brunch. The Perez Art Museum Miami gave us the most beautiful space imaginable overlooking the Floridian ocean. Our space was a garden, a true celebration of art, light, life, and love.

2018 Garden Fellows | L-R Grace Kisa, Shon Pittman, Ebony Black, Evelyn Quiñones, Angela Davis Johnson, Christa David, Jasmine Nicole Williams, Ayanna Smith and Ariel Dannielle.

Shout out to the all-women team for conceiving and executing such a momentous inaugural event.  Between the 2018 Garden Fellows and professionals of the arts industry , who consisted of other artists, curators, collectors, influencers and press, the terrace of PAMM felt like cloud 9 filled with beautiful reflections of each and every woman attending.  In the midst, they were able to encourage each other throughout the brunch using handwritten cards on The EmpowerHER wall  And also share this unforgettable moment in the garden-themed photo booth. If you have never added flowers to your mid-day cocktail, you should and thank us later. The bar served AH-MAZING TILA-inspired drinks that were blissfully garden-fresh and sweet.  And what is a Brunch without vibes, Bae Worldwide DJ’s Duchotae and Gina brought them all and kept our feet moving. Oprah would be proud. I mean, it rivaled her legend’s ball big time.

Aja Monet embracing Garden Fellow Jasmine Williams after reading her work during the EmpowerHER Brunch. Photo by Sierra King

Poet and Activist Aja Monet touched us deep in our souls and bones. Her words struck a chord in us to be more and do more. She challenged us to remember to make our art touch every individual in our communities. She even attested to being one of the first people to hear from our founder Tiffany LaTrice about the vision for this sanctuary. Such a full circle moment right there. Happy that the manifestation was so real. It was right on time too. Behold what happens when you speak life into your dreams and do the work to bring them to life!

Tiffany Latrice, Founder and Executive Director of TILA Studios and Naima Keith, Deputy Director and Chief Curator of California American American Museum Photo by Dierra Font

We took the conversation even higher if you can imagine. Because the zenith of all these things was the fireside chat between our founder, Tiffany LaTrice and Naima Keith. Naima is currently the Deputy Director and Chief Curator at the California African American Museum.

Before CAAM, Naima was positioned as Associate Curator at The Studio Museum in Harlem for five years under esteemed curator Thelma Golden. Between faith and universal timing she received a call from CAAM. It was perfect for Naima and her husband who felt NYC was feeling too crapped to raise their first child.

“The museum, the board, really wanted to change the direction of the museum drastically,” said Keith. “The attendance had waned quite a bit. They really wanted to encourage a younger audience to come to the museum. And having seen The Studio as an amazing model with Thelma’s efforts really encouraged them to seek me out in terms of bringing me back to L.A. My charge was to really think about the exhibition program but really think about the museum overall.” Since Naima’s appointment, attendance at openings has increased from about 300 people to 2,500 or 3,000 people.