Kira Joy Williams PROGRAM MANAGER
Center for Black Visual Culture
NYU Institute of African American Affairs
Program Manager, Kira Joy Williams (she/they) is an artist, storyteller, and community builder based in Brooklyn, NY on occupied Lenape land. Kira strives to contribute positively and generatively to existing visual representation of Black people in the U.S. by creating archival materials in collaboration with the very people being represented. Through photographs and interviews with participants, she explores the ways members of the African diaspora make home in the face of systemic disempowerment and pervasive racism.
Along with concepts of diasporic home, Kira’s art explores notions of care, community, and belonging through visual media and stories. Her photographs and recorded histories exist in the wake of longstanding memory-work traditions that make sense of the present and construct a new future––one in which we all belong.
Intrigued with what academic and author Tina M. Campt calls in her book Image Matters the “sticky residue of memory and history” emanating from photographs, and the myriad ways in which photographs affect people, Kira engages with image-making to explore truth, collaboration, and new ways to care. Kira received a BA from the Gallatin School of Individualized Study at New York University in 2015 and a Master's degree from Gallatin in 2023. She is a 2023 Create Change Artist-in-Residence with The Laundromat Project. Kira believes wholeheartedly in the power of art, abundance, and mutual aid, and in her plant babies.