Afro Native Narratives is a body of work that looks to explore and assist in the preservation of Black Native Identity through the mediums of portrait photography and video documentary. Questions around contemporary issues like how culture differs from DNA and how that affects the blood quantum, and what the future of mixed raced identity is in rapidly changing America. We aim to bring back and continue the discussion of Black Native Identity to the forefront and bring forward the faces of Black Natives who continue to embrace their traditions. We are looking to interview people and are concentrating in the Bay Area, California right now but we are looking to expand in the near future to other locations in the U.S. If you are interested in being part of Afro Native Narratives, fill out the form below or email us at documentary [at] iloveancestry.com.
Since the time that Christopher Columbus began the slave trade in the Caribbean, enslaved Africans looked towards the indigenous Native tribes of the America’s for refuge. From these unions a singular identity was formed that was distinct from its parents, being both African and Native. These groups were marginalized at higher rates than their parents and have been virtually wiped from historical records and were forced to choose a side or have one chosen for them.
Once the slave trade made it’s way to the Americas, that refuge became a necessity for both Native and enslaved Africans. Both races intermingled and married into and adopted each other’s culture. After time, due to racist lawmaking policies, Black Natives came to be less acknowledged and accepted and some neglected one side or the other to avoid being singled out. Black Natives who have persevered are proud of their heritage and their traditions. Most continue to embrace their culture and continue to carry on their traditions, and passing them on through generations.