Baldwin's Nigger Reloaded

Artist Barby Asante works with 15 young people to research, develop and create a 21st Century re-enactment and response to the film, 'Baldwin's Nigger'


Baldwin's Nigger, Horace Ove, 1969 (screen shot from youtube)

In 1969, photographer and filmmaker Horace Ové released Baldwin's Nigger. This short film documented American intellectual James Baldwin in conversation with Comedian and Activist Dick Gregory in front of an audience of Londoners in Brixton, mostly of Afro-Caribean heritage.

The film was shot in a 'plain verite' style - because of the audience make-up and Baldwin's own background the conversation is open and there is very little self censorship. Baldwin presents a provocative account, drawing on his personal experiences, and the resulting dialogue is extremely candid and open about the situation for Black people in Britain and the United States at that time. The conversation that is played out in the film and the questions and concerns addressed are still relevant in today's society.

About the project

Continuing her research into creating works that stimulate dialogue around questions of the cross cultural and multicultural in contemporary Britain, artist Barby Asante takes this film as a starting point to explore the legacy of the Civil Rights Movement and the position of Black intellectual thought on young people today.

Baldwin's Nigger Reloaded, intends to work with an ensemble of 15 young people to research, develop and create a 21st Century re-enactment and response to the film addressing concerns that affect young people across cultural and socio-economic lines.

Call out for participants

We are now recruiting the ensemble to co-develop the project with Barby.

Ensemble members will have the opportunity to develop their practice through working with Barby to discuss the film, do further research around the issues and questions arising in archives and the Stuart Hall Library, meet other creative professionals, make connections with and visit various cultural organisations and finally create a live performance installation to be presented at Rivington Place at the end of August 2014. 

Follow the link to the right for application details.

Teresa Cisneros

Education Curator

0207.729.9616 or

Find out more


  • Baldwin's Nigger

    A film by Horace Ove from 1960 that explores the black experience in America and relates it to that of the Caribbean and Great Britain.

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