Visual Arts- Dance of the Ancestors: Egungun Masquerade

On View: September 28-October 29; Tuesday through Friday 10am to 6pm, Saturday and Sunday 12pm to 5pm

Venue: City Gallery
Address: 34 Prioleau Street
Admission: Free

City of Charleston, the masquerade has arrived! The Masquerade is an integral part of culture and tradition, often taking part of yearly festivals, weddings, birth of children, funeral rites, and family observances: uniting the ancestral presence with the living, connecting the past to the present while moving forward to the future. Dance of the Ancestors: Egungun Masquerade focuses primarily on the Yoruba tradition of masquerade, the many styles reflecting the diversity and creativity of the culture through the artistic eye of Orisanmi Kehinde Odesanya, who started creating these ancestral vessels in 2015 to educate the general public about the masking traditions throughout the continent. Prominently featured is the creation of a full size Gelede Mask costume and photo documentary of the mask in process. This exhibition features various styles of Masquerades from West Africa, primarily based upon Yoruba culture, as represented through small sculpture and a full sized creation of a mask, Ere: Spirit in Cloth. Dance of the Ancestors will have a performance function to dance the mask bringing its energy to life and bless all those who witness its “magic.” Artist: Orisanmi Kehinde Odesanya, Cleveland, OH; Curator: Dr. Ade Ofunniyin, Adjunct Professor, College of Charleston, Executive Director of the Gullah Society, and Project Director of the Gullah Society Sacred Burial Ground Projects; Curatorial support: Jody Berman, PhD Candidate and Robin Poynor, PhD.

Visual Arts- Libation

On View: September 28-October 29; Tuesday through Friday 10am to 6pm, Saturday and Sunday 12pm to 5pm

Venue: City Gallery
Address: 34 Prioleau Street
Admission: Free

In the tradition of the Ancestors of Black people in America and abroad, the giving of libation has been a practice which is deeply rooted in black culture. It’s not just the action of pouring out a drink for those who are no longer on earth with us, but much more than that: it’s the recollection, remembrance, and celebration of the life and lifetimes of those who have passed on to other side as an Ancestor.

This exhibition consists of mixed media works, a short film installation, as well as a wall-to-floor installation. The artists offer healing to the community on a local and state-wide level, as they examine a lack of acknowledgement for the diverse experiences through many people’s lives in the black community. Artists include Roni Nicole Henderson (film, photography); Dogon Krigga (graphic design); and 2017 MOJA poster artist, Cedric Umoja (multi-media, muralist).

Cedric Umoja, Visual Artist

MOJA Arts Festival Juried Art Exhibition

On View: September 28-October 8; Tuesday through Friday 10am to 6pm, Saturday and Sunday 12pm to 5pm

Venue: City Gallery
Address: 34 Prioleau Street
Admission: Free

This annual juried art exhibition features work from artists living in the Southeast in a range of styles and media. In it, viewers will find artworks in photography, painting, drawing, graphic arts, fiber arts, sculpture, ceramics, basketry, and more.
This year’s juror is Orisanmi Kehinde Odesanya, whose work has been exhibited at the City Gallery as part of the 2016 exhibition Sixteen Crowns: Manifestations of Ase. Based in Cleveland, Ohio, Orisanmi Kehinde Odesanya is an artist, storyteller, and author. With a background in costuming and academic studies in African Art and religious art forms, she has developed an art practice that includes writing and following the rich cultural tradition of the African Masquerade through doll making and metaphysical interpretation. Her published works include Kwanzaa: A Learning Guide for Parents, Teachers, and Children.

Sixteen Crowns: Manifestations of Ase

MOJA Finale

Sunday, October 8, 4:00pm until dark
Venue: Hampton Park, 30 Mary Murray Boulevard
Admission: Free
Sponsored By: The Boeing Company,  SCE&G

Close out the Festival in style! Everyone in your family will enjoy this spirited celebration of all that the MOJA Festival has to offer. From fascinating craft vendors and fantastic food choices to an evening of live music, this party is sure to entertain. Get ready to dance with Toby Foyeh and Orchestra Africa, performing a unique world beat blend of West African Yoruba music with western styles, including jazz and pop and the evening continues with a performance from Charleston’s Super Deluxe, covering all of your favorite tunes.

Toby Foyeh & Orchestra Africa’s music is the sound of 3 Continents, Africa, America and Europe. The group takes you on a musical journey from Africa through 3 continents, where traditional Yoruba music, Highlife and Afrobeat meet Pop and Jazz with scincilating guitars, The female singers and dancers add a spice of traditional Africa in their call and response style songs with improvised African dances on rhythms of the world.

Based in Charleston, SC, Super Deluxe has been entertaining music lovers from all walks of life since 2008. Attendees of the Moja Festival finale will get to enjoy Super Deluxe’s polished, high-energy music show, featuring a wide array of music genres with a healthy helping of modern hip hop, soul classics, and vintage 70′s funk. The band’s lead singers are the lovely Joy Gregory and band leader, Wilton Elder, who will also be featured on saxophone. Joining Elder to form the band’s horn section is the talented David Carter on trumpet.

Super Deluxe’s Moja Festival appearance will showcase a rare twin-guitar set up with both Tommy Gielingh and Johnny Mac playing both rhythm and lead guitar throughout the night. The bottom end of the rhythm section is rounded out by the band’s newest member, Tristan Cills on bass and key bass, and band veterans Stephen Anderson on keys and vocals and the funky drummer, AJ Jenkins, on drum kit and lead vocals. Fans of the band will recognize music from past tributes to J Dilla, Herbie Hancock, and George Clinton & Parliament-Funkadelic!

For more information about Super Deluxe, please visit the band’s official site at

Ranky Tanky Homecoming

Sunday, October 8 at 8:00pm
Venue: Historic Dock Street Theatre
Address: 135 Queen Street
Admission: $25, Reserved Seating


In the midst of a successful US and international tour, Ranky Tanky returns home to Charleston for a one night only event. Quentin Baxter, Kevin Hamilton, Quiana Parler, Clay Ross, and Charlton Singleton make up the quintet performing the timeless music of Gullah culture born in the southeastern Sea Island region of the United States. From playful game songs to ecstatic shouts, from heartbreaking spirituals to delicate lullabies, the musical roots of Charleston, South Carolina are “rank” and fertile ground from which these contemporary artists are grateful to have grown.