The African American Museum in Philadelphia. Photo credit: "Beyond My Ken"
Grantee Spotlight: The African American Museum in Philadelphia

The African American Museum in Philadelphia (AAMP) was one of 47 statewide grantees for Pop-Up Grants for Cultural Producers. PHC created the program to provide rapid relief to cultural organizations impacted by the COVID-19 crisis. The funds supported arts organizations, museums, historical societies, and libraries as they began to shift  their events and activities to online platforms. 

AAMP is the first institution built by a major United States city to house and interpret the life and work of African Americans. PHC’s Pop-Up Grants for Cultural Producers supported their collaboration with The Escape Artist Initiative to create Parable of Coronas, a zine inspired by Parable of the Sower, the prophetic novel by Octavia E. Butler.  

Escape Artist Mixtape zines explore the art of survival through myth, media and music, D.I.Y and pop culture, afrofuturism and speculative fiction. Parable of Coronas included micro-interviews and an interactive playlist with contributions from local and national escape artists and radical visionaries of change. 

Li Sumpter is a mythologist and multidisciplinary artist who directs the Escape Artist Initiative. Photo credit: Leeway Foundation (

The free live zine release event was held on August 7th, hosted by lead artist and founder of the Escape Artist Initiative, Li Sumpter. 

Parable of Coronas zine release event on August 7th.

At a time of social distancing, dynamic and engaging virtual programming and events by cultural organizations like AAMP bring Pennsylvanians together to celebrate heritage and identity, build community and joy, create new virtual platforms, leverage assets like nature and place, and document our human stories.

Learn more about The African American Museum in Philadelphia and how you can support their work at:



The Pop-Up Grants for Cultural Producers program is made possible by support from the National Endowment for the Humanities, individual donors to PHC, and an anonymous donor who offered additional funds for Philadelphia-based projects serving artists and small arts organizations.



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