New York, NY,
20:01 PM

Park Avenue Armory Presents Artist Salon in Conjunction with Rashaad Newsome’s 'Assembly'

Event Convenes Artists and Scholars for Exploration of Technology, Race, and Liberation through Conversation and Performance

On February 20, Park Avenue Armory will present Captcha: Dancing, Data, Liberation, an artist salon organized by the Armory’s Curator of Public Programming, Tavia Nyong'o, and anchored by interdisciplinary artist Rashaad Newsome, featuring conversations and performances by an illustrious group of artists and scholars whose work engages with Blackness, technology, and liberation. Marking the continuation of the Armory’s public programming as the first program in a new series titled Making Space, Captcha will offer audiences the opportunity to explore more deeply Newsome’s Assembly, a new multi-experiential commission that will transform the expansive Wade Thompson Drill Hall into an exhibition space, performance hall, classroom, and theater during its run from February 18 through March 6, 2022. Encompassing many facets of Newsome’s practice, Assembly offers a captivating new vision of liberty and humanity through the lens of the Black and Queer experience, the advancement of technology, and the ways in which they are interconnected.

Captcha builds upon themes presented in Assembly, stimulating dynamic conversations around Black visual complexity and spirit and the pursuit of personal and collective liberation. The salon will feature Newsome in dialogue with his collaborators on Assembly, as well as additional artists and scholars in roundtable conversations about the emergence of a Black quantum visual language and the making of Assembly. It will also include a performance showcase featuring local and international voguers and a special preview of Get Your 10s, an in-process documentary on Newsome and Assembly.

“We are thrilled to relaunch the Armory’s dynamic public programming with Captcha,” said Rebecca Robertson, the Armory’s Founding President and Executive Producer. “Delving deeper into the threads of dialogue sparked by Assembly, Captcha gives participants the chance to explore the many ways in which Rashaad Newsome’s work allows us to reflect upon the societal complexities laid bare over the last two years, and how it can provide us a path forward.”

Captcha allows us an intimate view into Rashaad’s expansive black queer world-building and an opportunity to dialogue around the issues he is raising with Assembly,” said Tavia Nyong’o, Curator of Public Programming at Park Avenue Armory. “Through this multi-faceted event, he invites audiences to embrace the joy and dynamism of Black creativity and personhood, and to consider new perspectives on how we might transcend the binary between blackness and technology, freeing ourselves from established social structures.”

In addition to Newsome and Nyong’o, participants include Ms. Boogie, an Afro-Latina Brooklyn-based MC and activist; Puma Camillê, an internationally renowned multidisciplinary artist, capoeirista, digital influencer, dancer, model, social educator, and speaker; Aimee Meredith Cox, a dancer and choreographer who is jointly appointed in the departments of African American Studies and Anthropology at Yale; Dazié Rustin Grego-Sykes, an Oakland, California–based performance artist and poet; Saidiya Hartman, Professor of English and Comparative Literature at Columbia University; Robert Aiki Aubrey Lowe, an artist, curator, and composer working with voice and modular synthesizer in spontaneous sound; and Kiyan Williams, an artist and scholar from Newark working fluidly across performance, sculpture, video, and 2D realms.

The event marks the relaunch of Making Space, the Armory’s public programming series, formerly titled Interrogations of Form. Curated by Nyong’o, Making Space offers to audiences a series of intimate talks, salons, symposia, performances, and other activations. Through this ongoing programming, the Armory invites artists, performers, scholars, and other cultural leaders to explore how art can address the fault-lines in our racial and social order, while celebrating resilience, joy, and creativity.

Captcha: Dancing, Data, Liberation
Sunday, February 20, 2022
3pm – 6:30pm

  • 3:00pm – 4:00pm: Veterans Room
    A conversation on the emergence of a Black quantum visual language with Rashaad Newsome, Saidiya Hartman, Tavia Nyong’o, Kiyan Williams, and Aimee Meredith Cox.
  • 4:15pm – 4:45pm: Board of Officers Room
    A performance and activation by Assembly artists Ms. Boogie, Puma Camillê, and Dazié Rustin Grego-Sykes.
  • 5:15pm – 6:30pm: Veterans Room
    Preview screening of Get Your 10s, an in-process documentary on the making of Assembly, and a talkback with Assembly artists Ms. Boogie, Puma Camillê, Dazié Rustin Grego-Sykes, and Robert Aiki Aubrey Lowe.

Park Avenue Armory requires proof of a booster shot for all those for whom the timing of earlier vaccinations makes them eligible for a booster. Those not yet eligible will be able to continue to enter provided they are two weeks past their second dose in a two-dose vaccine series or two weeks after receiving a single-dose vaccine.

In compliance with New York City’s Key to NYC all ticket holders above the age of 5 years old must be fully vaccinated. “Fully vaccinated” means that you received your final dose of an FDA or WHO-approved vaccine at least 14 days before your performance date. At check-in, ticket-holders will be required to show proof of full vaccination (the NEW YORK STATE EXCELSIOR PASS or a hard copy or photo of your vaccination card) and a government-issued photo ID (for ticket holders 18 years of age or older).

In addition to the precautions taken above, all patrons and staff are required to wear N95, KN95 or KF94 masks while inside the Armory.

Tickets are $25 (plus fees) and are available for purchase at