Two Brooklyn Culture Artists Celebrate Grand Openings
By Bernice Elizabeth Green
Entrepreneur Tiecha Merritt, President of the Tompkins Avenue Merchants Association (TAMA), and veteran photographer/artist Malik Yusef Cumbo brought Brooklyn to Harlem last Friday at the opening of “Rhythm, Bass, and Place: Through the Lens Film Photography Exhibition” on view at the Caribbean Cultural Center African Diaspora Institute (120 East 125th Street) in Harlem, ongoing, and open March 25 through June.
The photo work of Cumbo and Joe Conzo Jr., reflecting highlights of their respective coverage of Black Music events between the 1970s and 2000s, are being showcased in the groundbreaking exhibit. Malik is the son of the late Fikisha Lois Cumbo, beloved photojournalist, author, and executive producer of Creative Artists’ Cultural Exchange, Inc., and a mentor to Ms. Merritt.
On this side of the bridge, Ms. Merritt, founder of the Bush Doctor Juice Bar at 307 Tompkins Avene, is getting ready to launch her new brainchild: TAMA SPEAKS. “It’s a monthly thought leadership discussion series connecting community stakeholders with the public,” Ms. Merritt told Our Time Press. “The dialogue exchange will center around the ups and downs of doing business and/or being a professional creative in the community.”
Merritt’s latest project debuts at Herbert Von King Cultural Arts Center, 670 Lafayette Avenue, in Brooklyn, on Friday, March 31, 5:30p-8:00p. Ms. Merritt — founder of The Bush Doctor Juice Bar — at 307 Tompkins Avenue, will co-host TAMA SPEAKS with Marlon Rice, CEO & Founder, Good People NYC, and Isha Joseph, owner, Make Manifest, a clothing and jewelry store at 382 Tompkins — which also functions as a community workspace.
“TAMA SPEAKS community interactive Town Hall will feature creators/artists, leaders, and entrepreneurs,” Ms. Merritt wrote in an email. The series’ first announced guests are BK Reader CEO and Founder Zawadi Morris and BedStuy-based established neighborhood artists Shyvon Paul and Jasmine Hurst.
Both Cumbo’s and Merritt’s respective events are free to the public.
For more information, visit TAMAbedstuy.com