Audiences attending Braata Productions’ upcoming Jonkuunu Hattitude Masquerade Show will be treated to a truly unique exhibition experience- a colorful array of hats and masks created by Senior Citizens from South Ozone, Queens, showcasing their best artistic skills.
The show takes place on Thursday June 29 starting at 11 am at The Catholic Charities Ozone Park Senior Center in Ozone Park, Queens.
Jonkuunu Hattitude is presented by Braata Productions with funding from the New York City SU CASA Initiative.
The SU CASA (Spanish for “Your House”) initiative is a community arts engagement program that places artists and organizations in residence at senior citizen centers across the five boroughs of New York City. The program, funded by the New York City Council, provides grants to artists and entities for the creation and delivery of arts programming for seniors.
During the programme, teaching artists engage participating seniors in an art project or series of cultural programs over the course of the residency, which culminates in a public presentation to showcase the efforts of the participants.
At the Catholic Charities Ozone Park Senior Center, acclaimed Jamaican born designer and visual artist Damian Shaw has been artist in residence for several months, and chose to instruct his residents in the art of creating masks and headwear celebrating the Jonkuunu masquerade tradition.
The Jonkuunu street parade is a long standing Caribbean cultural tradition and hearkens back to the days of slavery, finding its roots in African folk culture. The parades are usually held during the Christmas and New Year’s holidays and feature unique, often scary masks and costumes worn by street parade participants.
The colorful headwear created by the Ozone Park Seniors under Shaw’s guidance will now be on display for the public to see at the upcoming show- aptly titled Jonkuunu Hattitude.
According to Braata Productions Founder and Executive Director Andrew Clarke, “Programmes such as the SU CASA Initiative are vital in promoting the engagement and overall well being of its senior participants, and so we at Braata are committed to continuing to play our part.”
The Jonkuunu Hattitude Show and Exhibit is free and open to the public.
The Catholic Charities Ozone Park Senior Center is located at 103-02 101st Avenue, Jamaica NY, 11416.