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This Artist Collective In Philadelphia Is Documenting Gentrification In The Community

The Black Quantum Futurism Collective is documenting a gentrifying community to empower its residents. 

In Philadelphia, a community that is rapidly gentrifying, one artist collective is taking steps to empower its residents by re-imagining black futures within the city landscape.

The Black Quantum Physics Futurism Collective is defined as "an artistic and literary collaboration between Camae Dennis and Rasheedah Phillips which explores the intersections of imagination, futurism, literature, art, DIY-aesthetics, and activism in marginalized communities." Dennis and Philips aim to collect stories from the Sharswood/Blumberg neighborhood, an area known for its community organizations, businesses, and young folks:

"Essentially, Phillips, along with her fellow artists in the Black Quantum Futurism Collective, plus six Community Futures Lab interns, will document the redevelopment of the neighborhood to empower its residents. They'll do this by facilitating workshops where residents from the area are invited to share their memories, hopes and dreams for their rapidly changing community, through various visual, vocal and written mediums. They’ll also be armed with recording devices in case residents are unable to make their way to the space. These written and verbal accounts will be on display at the Community Futures Lab. "

Philadelphia's re-development is drastically changing the landscape of the city: new real estate projects that aim to attract a "new clientele" to The Gallery at Market East, where young black residents from different areas of the city could have safe places to socialize and gather with friends. With the new development, the mood at The Gallery has dramatically changed, with a decline in black shoppers. Along with The Gallery, residents of Philadelphia who are effected by gentrification are uprooted from their communities and experience lack of stability in housing, resulting in a "loss of inter-generational wealth."

The Collective contends that Afrofuturism, a term coined in the mid-90s by Mark Derry, will serve as a liberation practice for black communities world-wide:

“The Afrofuturist landscape lends itself well to exploring notions of institutional liberation, unearthing our true histories, mapping our futures, understanding our present conditions in the flow of time and through a speculative lens,” Phillips says. “Because it provides a perpetual bridge between the past, present and future, Afrofuturism, and the black speculative imagination, can be used as liberation technologies to build future worlds.”

The final project will be on display in the Community Futures Lab, which is described as "quantum time capsule" and will feature art and soundscapes. It will host its opening reception on June 18.

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Delta To Relaunch SkyMiles American Express Cards With More Perks For All

Business owners and consumers alike will soon be able to reap even more benefits from the Delta Skymiles American Express Card. Beginning January 30, 2020, cardholders will be able to earn more miles on everyday purchases and access more travel perks.

The relaunched American Express Card portfolio will include 4 tiers of card options for consumers (Delta SkyMiles® Blue American Express Card, Delta SkyMiles® Gold American Express Card, Delta SkyMiles® Platinum American Express Card, and Delta SkyMiles® Reserve American Express Card) and 3 tiers of options for business owners (Delta SkyMiles® Gold Business American Express Card, Delta SkyMiles® Platinum Business American Express Card, and Delta SkyMiles® Reserve Business American Express Card).

“We’re constantly listening to our customers and spent the last year digging deep on what they expect from an industry-leading Card. The result is a diverse portfolio of redesigned Cards that will deliver rich rewards and benefits that give travelers unmatched options that fit their lifestyle needs,” said Sandeep Dube, Delta’s Senior Vice President – Customer Engagement & Loyalty, and CEO – Delta Vacations. “Each Card is tailored to what our customers have told us is most important to them – ranging from ways to earn even more miles to travel perks along the way.”

Some new perks for consumers and business owners include earning 2 times the miles for purchases at restaurants and supermarkets, no transaction fees, earn 3 times the miles for airfare and hotel bookings, access to complimentary upgrades and more.

“This is a powerful expression of the backing we provide to our shared customers. We listened to their needs and made exciting changes to the Cards that give them greater value across the board,” said Eva Reda, Executive Vice President, Global Consumer Partnerships, American Express. “With lots of perks that elevate your travel experience, double and triple miles on spending where it counts and so much built-in value, it really pays to have our Delta Cards.”

To learn more about the new perks and their limited time offer (ending on October 31, 2019), visit news.delta.com.

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A view of the atmosphere at the Star-studded Adventure Ride hosted by Polaris Slingshot And RZR on September 12, 2019 in Tenmile, Oregon.
Johnny Nunez/Getty Images for Polaris Inc.

Polaris' Slingshot And RZR Offer Unforgettable Behind-The-Wheel Experiences

Polaris is taking customers on a wild ride. The company behind more than 30 products including off-roading vehicles and snowmobiles offers up unforgettable experiences that cater to your inner adrenaline junky.

Earlier in the month, the powersports giant flew members of the press and social media influencers, including Snoop Dogg's son Cordell Broadus, rapper Bia and BMX rider Nigel Slyvester, to Eugene, Oregon for the Polaris All Out Adventure. The daylong event gave participants a behind-the-wheel experience with the Polaris RZR and Polaris Slingshot.

After being in business for more than 60 years, Polaris continues to expand its reach to include a diverse group of consumers. “[It's about] creating accessibility to power sports and an interest that maybe folks didn’t have before because they saw it as something that you had to be off in the woods [to do], or you have to be off in the snow,” Joey Lindahl- Marketing Manager, Customer Growth & Engagement told VIBE.

“We make all that stuff, too — but now this is another option and it is really something that we see resonate with a lot more people than maybe have been our other products in the past.” The company has seen “organic growth” among “young riders, women, and people of color,” added Lindahl.

Among the lineup of impressive creations, the Polaris Slingshot steals the show. The sleek, three-wheel autocycle reaches speeds of up to 130 mph and was designed by Tiger Bracy, Polaris' Senior Manager of Industrial Design.

Bracy has worked with Polaris for more than a decade and is among the small group of black designers in his field. And even after years in the business, Bracy still gets excited to see his designs go from paper to pavement.

“I’ve been doing it so long that I’m used to it,” Bracy shared with VIBE when asked of his reaction to seeing a Slingshot on the road. “I think the first time that I saw something [that I designed] it wasn’t on-road if was an off-road product. It wasn’t [about] seeing someone on it, it was it being manufactured and coming together. Because in my brain I can see this but it’s still on paper, once it's out and it’s there and people are enjoying it? [My] mind [is] blown.”

More customers have identified with the Slingshot than the company anticipated, which allows Polaris to learn more about a diversified group of buyers. Although the Slingshot doesn't have a specific target audience, it was designed to “reach a different buyer,” Bracy explained.

“It’s not for everybody,” he said. “It’s a polarizing vehicle in terms of how you drive it, how it looks, but we wanted to take that risk to go find a new area.”

See more in the video below.

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Celebrate Apollo 11's Historic Moon Landing With Grand Marnier's "Moonwalk" Cocktail

It's been five decades since Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin became the first human beings to land on the moon. To mark the historic moment that occurred on July 20, 1969, global French liqueur brand Grand Marnier is celebrating the historic "Moonwalk" cocktail inspired by Amstrong and Aldrin's lunar journey.

In 1969, Joe Gilmore, head barman of the Savoy Hotel's American Bar, invented the drink to commemorate the astronauts' return from their successful mission. The classic cocktail — made of Marnier's cognac and bitter orange-flavored liqueur, champagne and more — is said to have been the first beverage they sipped upon their homecoming.

“The cocktail was a mix of grapefruit juice, Grand Marnier, champagne and rose water,” he explained to Wonderland in 2008. “The Savoy sent it off in a flask and I received a letter back from Neil Armstrong thanking us and saying it was the first drink they had when they came out of quarantine.”

In honor of the 50th anniversary, we're sharing the classic "Moonwalk" recipe for you to enjoy from the comfort of your home today and for years to come. Scroll down for more details and relive the historic moment in the video below.

Bonus: We've added four more Grand Marnier cocktail recipes for the French holiday, Bastille Day (July 14). À votre santé (Cheers)!

 

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