Skip to main content Skip to footer

The Black Studies Collaboratory

The Black Studies Collaboratory aims to bring together artists, activists, locals, and scholars to amplify the interdisciplinary, political, and world-building work of Black Studies. Black Studies broadly, and the African American intellectual tradition specifically, have always been grounded in community and geared toward improving the conditions of black life under structures of injustice. This principle was central to the establishment of archives like the Schomburg Collection, SNCC’s Freedom Schools that taught direct democracy alongside theater, music and photography; and the Combahee River Collective and other black feminist groups who organized consciousness-raising sessions. These examples also remind us that knowledge is produced, circulated, and put into use in a range of locations, from the kitchen table to the seminar room, from the street corner to the concert stage, from the prison cell to the lecture podium. Artists, scholars and activists have dreamt up and thought critically about what the future might look like if the affirmation of black lives were the foundation of U.S. society.

“Diagram of How She Hold it All Together”: A Conversation with Yashua Klos and Leigh Raiford


Collection of press releases about UC Berkeley Black Studies Collaboratory in media.

The Black Studies Collaboratory Welcomes Nite Bjuti for Residency at UC Berkeley in March 2024

The Black Studies Collaboratory (BSC) is excited to announce Nite Bjuti’s upcoming artist residency in March 2024. Nite Bjuti, (pronounced “Night Beauty”), is a mesmerizing trio composed of Candice Hoyes, Val Jeanty, and Mimi Jones. This Afro Caribbean ensemble is renowned for their evocative improvisations, blending electronics, vocalism, bass, Haitian drum rhythms, sampling, and spoken word to craft a captivating narrative journey. From March 11 through 14, Nite Bjuti will participate in programming with the Department of African American Studies, including a guest class lecture. On Wednesday, March 13th at 7:30 pm, Nite Bjuti will share their work in a public performance at the Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive (BAMPFA). The trio will also lead an interactive conversation on archives, sonic storytelling, and collaboration following their performance Tickets, free of charge, are required to attend and will be available starting Wednesday, February 14 at 11 am. Nite Bjuti’s residency in the Department of African American Studies at UC Berkeley promises to be a remarkable exploration of their unique artistic expression. Inspired by the centuries-old Haitian folklore of “Night Beauty,” Nite Bjuti delves into a world where a girl’s bones sing in her afterlife, her spirit seeking justice. The trio is celebrated for their exceptional contributions to the arts, having received the UMEZ Arts Engagement Grant for their 2022 mixed media installation, commissioned by the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture. In 2020, they were honored with the NYC Women’s Fund in Jazz Music, fully funding their highly anticipated debut album, which was released in 2023. Please join us on March 13th at BAMPFA to experience Nite Bjuti!

Diagram of How She Hold it All Together
53” x 52”
Paper construction of woodblock prints
and graphite on archival
Japanese rice paper
Courtesy of Yashua Klos