A place where space, pyramids, funk and politics collide, Afrofuturism is one of the most imaginative ways of re-defining and re-imagining black identity in the past, present, and the future. It is all encompassing - bridging everything from spirituality to hip hop, art, fashion, comic books, science, and, of course, film.
Throughout October we will take a closer look at all of these areas, kicking off with a special focus on Sun Ra, the original Afro-naut and free jazz pioneer, in celebration of his centenary.
Yours and mine favourite musician from Saturn, Ra was an experimental jazz genius who blessed us earthlings with cosmic vibrations and stellar tunes (not to mention an awesome glitter-Egyptian wardrobe). Rare documentary Sun Ra: A Joyful Noise (Thu 2 Oct at 20:30) takes a closer look at the man himself, after which we'll be inviting you to join the Mothershed (see what we did there?) for a Funk Upon A Time Party (from 22:00 - late in the Café/Bar) hosted by Ujima Radio's Universal Magnetic Show Crew.
The season continues with films dedicated to Afrofuturist legends new and old, such as the Godfather P-Funk George Clinton (George Clinton: Tales of Dr Funkenstein, Sun 5 Oct at 18:00) and blockbuster king Will Smith (I Am Legend, Sat 11 Oct at 17:30), and emerging writers and animators can take part in our Flash Fiction (Sun 5 Oct) and Animation (Sat 11 Oct) workshops.
There's also a whole host of rare documentaries, stunning shorts, and even a feminist sci-fi film featuring whistle blowing girl bicyclists swooping down on would-be attackers. Afrofuturism is a diverse programme, for a diverse audience. Get up to get down and discover a world (or indeed worlds) where today's boundaries blur into insignificance.
Watershed's Afrofuturism season is curated by Dr Edson Burton. Edson has written this article about Afrofuturism's influences and influencers, inspirations and ideas - including his own personal journey.
Part of Sci Fi: Days of Fear and Wonder, part of the BFI's huge celebration of science fiction, the world's most popular film genre, in Bristol and Beyond. Check watershed.co.uk/scifi for all the latest out of this world events.