More than 150 objects will be featured in a virtual exhibition on hip-hop culture at the Marshall M. Fredericks Sculpture Museum at Saginaw Valley State University. Hip Hop Icons opens Feb. 1, 2021, in celebration of Black History Month.
The items come from the personal collection of Dr. Khalid el-Hakim, who has collected Black memorabilia for more than 30 years as part of the Black History 101 Mobile Museum, which a press release describes as "the most traversed Black history in America." Dr. el-Hakim was promoter, booking agent, and manager in Detroit’s hip-hop scene in the late 1990s and mid-2000s, working with Proof of D12 as co-label owner of Iron Fist Records. His collection of Black history artifacts has more 10,000 objects, dating back to the Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade.
"Having hip-hop exhibited in a major Michigan museum is a milestone for the culture," Dr. el-Hakim said in a statement. "One of the challenges for institutions is ensuring programs and exhibits represent diverse perspectives and ideas, especially of marginalized communities. The Hip Hop Icons exhibit meets that challenge head on with one of the most dynamic pop culture phenomena over the past 40 years. This exhibit celebrates the hip-hop fan in every one of us."
The museum will also host a “Hip Hop Icons Film Speaker Series” of Michigan-based and internationally recognized hip-hop icons, with artists and directors from the films participating in a Zoom Q&A. All events are free and start at 7 p.m. Breed & Bootleg: Legends of Flint Rap Music will be made available for streaming through the Marshall M. Fredericks Sculpture Museum, the first time the film has been made available to the public since the 2020 Freep Film Fest.
The schedule is:
• Thursday, Feb. 4: Beat Street film discussion with hip hop pioneer MC Sha Rock interviewed by DJ Butter.
• Thursday, Feb. 11: 8 Mile film discussion with Michigan based hip hop artists Supa Emcee and Miz Korona.
• Friday, Feb. 19: Do the Right Thing film discussion with Grammy Lifetime Awardee and Rock n Roll Hall of Fame inductee Professor Griff of Public Enemy interviewed by “Hip Hop Icons” curator Khalid el-Hakim.
• Thursday, Feb. 25: Breed & Bootleg: Legends of Flint Rap Music documentary discussion with film director, Geri Alumit Zeldes and MC Breed’s wife, Natasha Breed.
The Marshall M. Fredericks Sculpture Museum is located on the campus of Saginaw Valley State University, 7400 Bay Rd., University Center; 989-964-7125; marshallfredericks.org. The Museum is currently closed to the public due to the coronavirus pandemic.
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