FRIDAY NIGHTS AT NOMA: LECTURE BY MARY NIALL MITCHELL5 - 9 p.m. February 7, 2014
In conjunction with the exhibition Photography and the American Civil War, NOMA is hosting a guest lecture by Mary Niall Mitchell, the Joseph Tregle Professor in Early American History at the University of New Orleans. Mitchell’s lecture is titled “Orphans, Fugitives, and White Slaves: Photographic Propaganda and the Civil War.” After the lecture, catch an Artist Perspective talk with Grayhawk Perkins, and enjoy the music of Amanda Walker. Join us!
- 5-8 p.m.: Art on the Spot: free art activities
- 5:30-8:30 p.m.: Music by Amanda Walker
- 6 p.m: Lecture by Mary Niall Mitchell
- 7 p.m.: Artist Perspective by Grayhawk Perkins: Woven Histories: Houma Basketry
About Amanda Walker
Soulful singer/songwriter Amanda Walker is blazing an inspired new trail on the New Orleans scene. With her sensuous, bluesy vocals, classically trained piano chops and warm, intelligent, original songs, she is emerging as a unique contemporary musical voice. Her talents have put her onstage and in the studio alongside many of the Crescent City’s finest.
Born into a musical household in rural Dexter, Missouri, Amanda was singing and playing piano by the time she could walk. Her mother was a professional pianist and music instructor, and the constant exposure to music and musical education imbued Amanda with prodigious instrumental and vocal skills, as well as an immaculate ear. She began performing classical piano recitals at festivals by age 10 and she continued to perform throughout high school. Amanda put music aside when she entered college to make time for her career as an NCAA Division 1 tennis player, but resumed performing professionally while living in New Orleans and attending Tulane Law School. Her work at French Quarter night spots quickly earned her the respect and recognition of other musicians and landed her an offer to record her debut CD for Rabadash Records. Many of the songs from the all-original CD have received airplay nationally and overseas, and her song “Paul McCartney” was chosen for spins by the BBC on Sir Paul’s birthday.
In addition to her musical career, Amanda is now practicing law in the New Orleans area, with a career in the juvenile justice system, in addition to providing legal help for musicians and music industry professionals.
Amanda can be seen performing regularly in New Orleans as a solo or with her full band.
About Grayhawk Perkins
New Orleans-born Grayhawk Perkins, who is of Native American Choctaw and Houma Nation decent, is a well known cultural figure in Louisiana. In his career, he has worked professionally as an educator, historian, and a musician. As a musician, he has been involved with the New Orleans music industry for decades, having shared the stage with many notable acts such as the Neville Brothers and Coco Robicheaux. He performs regularly at the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival and the Voodoo Experience Music Festival, and has worked as a Jazz Fest Coordinator for over 25 years.
As a recognized expert on Native American and American Colonial history, Perkins has inspired many audiences over the years sharing tales of ancient cultures as a ‘tribal storyteller’, and as a teacher of various subjects in Louisiana’s school system. He has taught music, history, writing, and environmental studies to students ranging in age from Pre-K to college level, and has been a solo performer for Young Audiences for over 15 years.
Other credentials include his work as an Interpretive Ranger for the Louisiana Office of State Parks and designer of the Canne Brulee Natural History Museum in Kenner’s Rivertown District, under sponsorship of the City of Kenner. He has also worked in the film industry as an actor and has been called upon as a historical consultant to numerous films shot in the Southern United States. Most recently, Perkins was honored by St. Tammany Parish President Kevin Davis as Cultural Artist of the Year for 2010 in the field of music.
Many of the works displayed in the exhibition, Woven Histories: Houma Basketry were created by members of Grayhawk’s family. He will be discussing this aspect of the exhibition.