As Elizabeth Myles’s, AB’20, sizzle reel played, sighs of recognition, claps and cheers rang out at each clip. Many of the filmmakers were in the audience. “I’m in tears because you’ve put all our films in conversation with each other,” said festival co-organizer and filmmaker Yvonne Welbon.
The Sojourner Truth Festival of the Arts 2023 culminated in a symposium that brought together film and literary veterans with contemporary artists, archivists, and scholars. Held at the David and Reva Logan Center for the Arts, the gathering paid homage to the original 1976 Sojourner Truth Festival held in New York—believed to be the first ever Black women’s film festival. Participants, many of whom attended the original 1976 festival, traveled from Europe, South America and across the U.S. to attend. Some reunited for the first time in 47 years.