Cake Walk

1983-89, 26:28 min, color, sound

This video documents Cake Walk, an installation and performance piece by artist Houston Conwill, staged in November 1983 at Linda Goode Bryant's pioneering gallery Just Above Midtown (JAM), at its second (downtown) location on Franklin Street. The piece refers to the cakewalk dance which developed in the mid-eighteenth century among enslaved African Americans as, among other things, a way to covertly ridicule slaveholders. The dancers in Cake Walk move amid Conwill's sculptures and paintings, one of Conwill's cosmograms painted on the floor beneath them.

Videotaped and edited by: Ulysses Jenkins. Choreography: Ronald Alexander. Featuring: Ronald Alexander, Carolyn Campbell, Houston Conwill, Kinshasha Holman Conwill, Eugene Niles, Karen Thornton. Voices: Cliff Frazier, Kinshasha Holman Conwill. Performed at Just Above Midtown/Downtown on November 12, 18, and 19, 1983.