Wednesday, 1 January 2014

Afro Supa Hero

I really liked this small but wonderful exhibition on at the Museum of Childhood and would definitely recommend a visit! It's interesting how from the very beginning the toys we play with and the games we make up, come to shape our idea's of self and belonging. To the children of immigrants growing up in a world of contradictions, when and how do we first begin to identify or set ourselves apart from others? When and how do we first seek belonging? And if we can't find it in the place we live, can we find it in lands afar? Find out more about the exhibition below. 

Afro Supa Hero is a snapshot of a childhood and journey to adulthood, shown through a personal collection of pop cultural heroes and heroines of the African diaspora. Jon Daniel’s action figures, comic books and games offer an insight into the experience of a boy of African Caribbean heritage growing up in 1960s and 1970s Britain, in search of his identity.

Born in East Sheen in southwest London and as the child of Caribbean parents, Jon Daniel found his positive black role models in the West Indian culture of his family and the African-American culture of the US. In his late twenties, Jon began collecting primarily 1970s action figures, feeling that they most strongly embodied the era of his childhood. In the display Meteor Man, Mr T and Lieutenant Uhura stand alongside real-life icons Muhammad Ali, Martin Luther King and Nelson Mandela. Also on show are games, and comics including Black Lightning, The Falcon and Lobo, one of a two-issue series featuring the first leading African American character in the genre.