TONIKA JOHNSON

Photographer & Committed Englewood Resident

TONIKA JOHNSON

What Happens to A Dream Deferred? (Event)

April 16, 2019 – "Ain’t You Heard – What Happens to A Dream Deferred," was an evening of storytelling through performances, curated large-scale projections, and memories collection at Woods Academy, one of the 16 schools closed in Englewood since 2002. Inspired by a Langston Hughes' poem, Tonika and Paola Aguirre organized the event in partnership with Resident Association of Greater Englewood (https://ragenglewood.org/) Borderless Studio (https://www.borderless-studio.com/), and Creative Grounds (https://www.creativegrounds.org/). It included curated visual projections depicting Black life during the Great Migration through historic photos of Chicago and the South; a “memory station” asking participants to share their stories related to their journey and belonging in Chicago plus performances by Tonika and rapper Roy Kinsey (http://www.roykinsey.com/). This event was supported by the curators of Dimensions of Citizenship: Architecture and Belonging from the Body to the Cosmos, the official U.S. entry at the recently-concluded 16th International Architecture Exhibition of the Venice Biennale, (http://dimensionsofcitizenship.org/).

Long video recap of the "What Happens to a Dream Deferred," Englewood community event by Butterfly Productions (https://jointheswarm.org/).

April 16, 2019 – "What happens to A Dream Deferred," community event in Englewood. Photos by Brandon Fields Photography (https://bfieldsphoto.com/)

April 16, 2019 – "What happens to A Dream Deferred," community event in Englewood. Photos by Brandon Fields Photography (https://bfieldsphoto.com/)

April 16, 2019 – Large scale projection at "What happens to A Dream Deferred," community event in Englewood. Photos by Brandon Fields Photography (https://bfieldsphoto.com/)

April 16, 2019 – Tonika Johnson reciting her family’s migration story at "What happens to A Dream Deferred," community event in Englewood. Photos by Brandon Fields Photography (https://bfieldsphoto.com/)

April 16, 2019 – Roy Kinsey (http://www.roykinsey.com/) performing at "What happens to A Dream Deferred," community event in Englewood. Photos by Brandon Fields Photography (https://bfieldsphoto.com/)

April 16, 2019 – Roy Kinsey (http://www.roykinsey.com/) performing at "What happens to A Dream Deferred," community event in Englewood. Photos by Brandon Fields Photography (https://bfieldsphoto.com/)

April 16, 2019 – Vigil for the closed schools and deferred dreams of ancestors at "What happens to A Dream Deferred," community event in Englewood. Photos by Brandon Fields Photography (https://bfieldsphoto.com/)

April 16, 2019 – Anton Seals, Jr. of Grow Greater Englewood (https://www.growgreater.org/) facilitated the "What happens to A Dream Deferred," community event in Englewood. Photos by Brandon Fields Photography (https://bfieldsphoto.com/)

April 16, 2019 – Tonika Johnson at the close of "What happens to A Dream Deferred," community event in Englewood. Photos by Brandon Fields Photography (https://bfieldsphoto.com/)

April 16, 2019 – Anton Seals, Jr. of Grow Greater Englewood (https://www.growgreater.org/) facilitated the "What happens to A Dream Deferred," community event in Englewood. Photos by Brandon Fields Photography (https://bfieldsphoto.com/)

April 16, 2019 – Animated info graphics at the "What happens to A Dream Deferred," community event in Englewood. Photos by Brandon Fields Photography (https://bfieldsphoto.com/)

April 16, 2019 – Animated info graphics at the "What happens to A Dream Deferred," community event in Englewood. Photos by Brandon Fields Photography (https://bfieldsphoto.com/)

April 16, 2019 – An evening of storytelling through performances, curated large-scale projections, and memories collection was organized by Tonika and Paola Aguirre (http://www.groundedvisionaries.org/alumni_members/aguirre/) in partnership with Resident Association of Greater Englewood (https://ragenglewood.org/) Borderless Studio (https://www.borderless-studio.com/), and Creative Grounds (https://www.creativegrounds.org/) and held at Woods Academy, one of the 16 schools closed in Englewood since 2002.

Inspired by Langston Hughes' classic poem of the same title, the event included curated visual projections depicting Black life during the Great Migration through historic photos of Chicago and the South; a “memory station” asking participants to share their stories related to their journey and belonging in Chicago plus performances by Tonika and rapper Roy Kinsey (http://www.roykinsey.com/).

This event was supported by the curators of Dimensions of Citizenship: Architecture and Belonging from the Body to the Cosmos, the official U.S. entry at the recently-concluded 16th International Architecture Exhibition of the Venice Biennale, (http://dimensionsofcitizenship.org/).

Up Next:

From The INside Project