Main Art Gallery, University of Rhode Island
Feb 11th — Half-day program with keynote address including members of the CFR team.
January 23–February 18: Invisible Bodies, Disposable Cloth: Rhode Island and Slavery, 1783–1850s
This exhibition explores Rhode Island’s textile industry and its connections to slavery, the slave trade and other related institutions from 1783 to the 1850s. It will will trace the creation of “Negro Cloth” and examine the RI textile industry starting with the Transatlantic Slave Trade; cloth production; working in the factory, and cloth sent back to the South on slave ships to be worn by slaves as its final destination.
In 1703, Rhode Island recognized and legalized enslavement. Just over one hundred years later, the United States Congress passed a federal law banning the international slave trade, which curiously heralded a boom in the domestic slave trade. Slavery was not outlawed in Rhode Island until 34 years later.
With particular emphasis on Rhode Island’s economy from 1783 to the 1850s, this exhibition will use text, images, artifacts, and multimedia installation to explore the interdependence of our country’s economy and its intrinsic links with the institution of slavery, and the international and domestic slave trades.
Opening reception; Tuesday, February 2, 3:45–5 p.m. and Friday, February 17, 5–5:45 p.m.
105 Upper College Rd., Kingston, RI