Saint Heron, the music and cultural hub founded in 2013 by Solange Knowles, has announced plans to expand, The Root has learned.
According to a press release, the cultural institution is now set to evolve into a multidisciplinary platform which will include a creative agency and studio. Continuing its goal to “preserve, collect and uplift the stories, works, and archives that amplify vital voices within communities,” Saint Heron will also debut its first-of-a-kind digital dossier, highlighting both “literary and visual retrospectives of radical family and artist lineages.” Contributions from emerging photographers, sculptors, artisans and designers will be showcased as well as literary exhibitions featuring artists and educators like Ilyasah Shabazz, Barbara Chase-Riboud, Shala Monroque, Cassi Namoda, Helga Davis and Okwui Okpokwasili, and archives from Womack & Womack and composer Charles Stepney.
Additionally, Saint Heron supporters can also expect to see the expansion of its art gallery, Small Matter, which houses various cultural expressions of futuristic designs as well as the Saint Heron Holism Project, an initiative built to bring holistic therapeutic healing and support to women, girls and communities of color.
“Worldmaking has been a huge part of my practice,” Solange explained in a statement. “The idea of leaving behind cities, meccas, and universes that were occupied and celebrated by bodies, voices, celebrations and rituals to be discovered down the line. As we transition to an institution, the answer and the vision become abundantly clear. We are creating a legacy where we not only continue the work we have already built, but preserve collections of creators with the urgency they deserve. Together we want to create an archive of stories, and works we deem valuable.”
She concluded, “We want to open up these works publicly, and make them accessible to students, and our communities for research, engagement, and consumption so that the works are integrated into our collective story and belong and grow with us. We are creating an embodiment of living testaments to the glory of expression, and how that recharges and reaffirms the reverence we hold for our own cultural and artistic worth. We look forward to furthering the pursuit of authenticity that empowers the stories of our people.”
In the years to come, Saint Heron will also include a permanent art and design collection, an artist in residence program, a nonprofit library offering free access to its archived collection, an in-house line of home and fashion collectibles, unique brand collaborations, special music projects via Saint Records, experimental art film releases, a series of gallery exhibitions and installations and so much more.
The first digital installation featuring Solange is available to view now on the Saint Heron website.