Honor Women’s History Month by joining our in-person Standing in Solidarity celebration of acclaimed poet Nikki Giovanni whose words have inspired the courage to dream for decades. She’s an icon, activist and Afrofuturist feminist who emerged from the Black Arts Movement of the ’60s and ’70s. She speaks her truth with humor and heart, and her themes can feel otherworldly and hopeful in spite of the harsh realities during which they were written.
Our PSEG True Diversity Film is Going to Mars: The Nikki Giovanni Project, winner of the U.S. Grand Jury Prize for documentary in the 2023 Sundance Film Festival. The film tells Giovanni’s life story through her words including interviews, public appearances and candid interactions with family and friends. Making the film was a seven year project for directors and producers Joe Brewster and Michèle Stephenson.
Following the screening, Stephenson will be in conversation with Donna Walker-Kuhne, Senior Advisor of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion at NJPAC. Also appearing is Amina Bey, Executive Director of Newark Emergency Services for Families, and Naomi Extra who will perform one of her original poems. This program is a co-production of Women@NJPAC and Dodge Poetry.
About the film
Winner of the Grand Jury Prize in the Sundance U.S. Documentary Competition, this beguiling documentary portrait follows poet and activist Nikki Giovanni as she approaches 80. The film explores Giovanni’s Afrofuturist-feminist philosophical outlook as well as her poignant relationship with her family, her political audacity, and her poetic eloquence, all knit together with a constant eye and ear for its subject’s own aesthetic verve. Looking back at a personal life and history cast in the long shadow of American racism, and forward to hopeful, possible futures, Giovanni acts as our guide and narrator, with refreshingly unorthodox filmmakers Joe Brewster and Michèle Stephenson refraining from traditional chronologies or talking-head conventions. Going to Mars is fueled by constant intellectual engagement and radical imagination in the search for emotional and political fulfillment in a world of disenfranchisement. An HBO Documentary Films release.