“There was a restlessness in the creative community at the beginning this decade, a dissatisfaction with a certain aspect with politics going on, and a desire to get the art and political ideas a platform. That lead to us forming, putting together the exhibition and then me subsequently writing the manifesto for the movement.”

— Co-Founder Dr. Reynaldo Anderson

The BLACK SPECULATIVE ARTS MOVEMENT, or BSAM, emerged in the wake of Unveiling Visions: Alchemy of The Black Imagination the debut exhibition curated by John Jennings and Reynaldo Anderson at the Schomburg library in New York, in 2015.

It has grown into a network of creatives, intellectuals, and artists representing different positions or basis of inquiry including: Afrofuturism, Astro Blackness, Afro-Surrealism, Ethno Gothic, Black Digital Humanities, Black (Afro-future female or African Centered) Science Fiction, The Black Fantastic, Magical Realism, and The Esoteric.

Although these positions may seem incompatible, in some instances they overlap around the term speculative and design; and interact around the nexus of technology and ethics.

Black Speculative Art is a creative, aesthetic practice that integrates African diasporic worldviews with science or technology and seeks to interpret, engage, design or alter reality for the re-imagination of the past, the contested present, and to act as a catalyst for the future.

Afrofuturism 2.0 is the early 21st century techno-genesis of Black Identity reflecting counter histories, hacking, and or appropriating network software, database logic, cultural analytics, deep remixability, neurosciences, enhancement and augmentation, gender, fluidity, posthuman possibility, the speculative sphere, with transdisciplinary applications, and has grown into an important diasporic technocultural Pan-African movement. It is characterized by five dimensions that include:

  • Metaphysics

  • Aesthetics

  • Theoretical and Applied Science

  • Social Science

  • Programmatic Space

21st century manifestation of global Black “cultural vibranium” for a geopolitical world, an interstellar child of of 20th century Pan Africanism ,or as Andrew Rollins defines it as “an Afrofuturistic concept in which a person’s black state of consciousness, released from the confining crippling slave or colonial mentality, becomes aware of the multitude and varied possibilities and probabilities within the universe.”

Dark Speculative Futurity
The late 20th century development, emergence, and philosophical perspective of non-White people in regards to their own agency or significance in relation to humanity or other life forms. Furthermore, how they describe or forecast phenomena in terms of their cultural purpose, principles, or goals in regards to global change, technological and social acceleration, ecological processes, and interstellar aspirations.

BSAM L.L.C., founded by Reynaldo Anderson, is a year long traveling afrofuturism, comics, film, and art convention held at but not limited to multiple universities, colleges, domestically and at venues in the US and abroad.

To learn more, explore the Manifesto or the manuscripts featured on the Articles.