‘black enuf*,’ an animated short film, examines the expanding idea of Black identity, takes a playful approach to questions of race, difference and self-acceptance
by Iman Childs
The award-winning animation short film black enuf* will certainly be a highlight at this year’s Reel Sisters of the Diaspora Film + Lecture Series. A playful approach to questions of race, difference and self-acceptance, black enuf* was awarded Best Animated Film at the 2017 Reel Sisters Awards Ceremony and just acquired by Third World Newsreel, the nonprofit progressive media center that nurtures and facilitates media by and about people of color and social justice issues, through distribution, production, exhibition and training.
Carrie Hawk’s black enuf* depicts the autobiographic journey of a queer oddball who seeks approval from their Black peers despite a serious lack of hip-hop credentials and a family that ‘talks white.’ The film interweaves stories from their great-grandmother’s autobiography, interviews of family and friends, and their hand-drawn memories. Hawks’ quest for belonging and acceptance of their racial identity takes them from Missouri, to New York and halfway around the world.
“Partially, I made [the film] in order for me to accept myself as black enough and not be worried about other people’s opinions as much,” Hawks described their motivation for making the film.
Hawks examines the expanding idea of Black identity, hoping to inspire those who may be dealing with similar struggles, to accept their unique identity.
“I’ve been finding…the more specific you get in your storytelling, the more universal it gets because people can really identify with true experiences that you’re going through – like feeling like a fraud or that you’re not good enough,” said Hawks.
Hawks has been committed to visual art ever since they have been holding a crayon. They harness masterfully the magic of animation to tell stories. Their art has been exhibited in New York, Atlanta, Kansas City, Toronto and Tokyo. Hawks’ films have been screened at Philadelphia’s BlackStar Film Festival, Stockholm’s CinemAfrica and New York’s MIX Queer Experimental Film Festival. Their first film ‘Delilah’ won the Best Experimental Award at the Reel Sisters of the Diaspora Film Festival in 2012.
Learn more about Carrie Hawks and black enuf* in this video interview by Iman Childs.
The Reel Sisters of the Diaspora Film + Lecture Series, celebrating its 20th anniversary, returns on October 21 and 22, presenting over 30 films in Brooklyn and Harlem. black enuf* will be screened on October 21, at 3:10pm, as part of the festival’s family day at Alamo Drafthouse Cinema in Brooklyn.
Reel Sisters Film Festival offers affordable ticket prices, starting at $12 for a section pass is $12 and $35 for a one-day pass is $35. For schedule and tickets please visit reelsisters.org or call 347-534-3304/ 212-865-2982.