Imagined by the late James Stinson and Gerald Donald (Dopplereffekt) in 1989, Drexciya through a succession of releases such as “Deep Sea Dweller (1992),” “The Quest (1997),” “Neptune’s Lair (1999)”, and “Harnessed the Storm (2002)” left clues of the scientifically advanced civilization and their tactical sonic warfare against all colonizers and programmers of the Western world. “The Drexciyan Empire” returns to the origin story authored by A. Qadim Haqq in the graphic novel “the Book of Drexciya: Volume One,” envisioning the founding of a Black utopia that would evolve into an aquatic, stereophonic intelligence with the addition of sketches towards the next installment which is currently being crowdfunded.
Following the viewing of “The Drexciyan Empire,” A. Qadim Haqq and DeForrest Brown, Jr. will discuss the legacy of Drexciya and their previous collaboration for the cover of Brown, Jr.’s forthcoming book for Primary Information entitled Assembling a Black Counter Culture, framing techno and adjacent African American innovations in electronic music as a liberation technology.
A. Qadim Haqq is a Detroit based illustrator, futurist, and the founder of Third Earth Visual Arts. Haqq’s artworks can be seen all over the world on classic Detroit Techno record labels such as Transmat and Underground Resistance. Most recently, he released a 76-page graphic novel entitled “The Book of Drexciya” that explores the Afrofuturist mythology envisioned by James Stinson and Gerald Donald.
Dopplereffekt are one of the most mysterious, thrilling and consistently challenging entities in electronic music. Originated by Gerald Donald, one-half of Drexciya and responsible for era-defining releases under a variety of enigmatic aliases, the current iteration of the group includes Donald and fellow explorer To-Nhan. Together, the pair’s razor-sharp production and a peerless capacity for transportive soundscapes are as likely to reference concepts embedded in physics and biology as they are capable of moving crowded dancefloors. Dopplereffekt inhabit a unique contemporary sonic world, with a restless creativity and intense commitment to carving out their own musical space.
DeForrest Brown, Jr. is a New York-based theorist, journalist, and curator. He produces digital audio and extended media as Speaker Music and is a representative of the Make Techno Black Again campaign. His work explores the links between Black experience in industrialized labor systems and Black innovation in electronic music. On Juneteenth of 2020, he released the album Black Nationalist Sonic Weaponry on Planet Mu, and Primary Information will publish his first book Assembling a Black Counter Culture in 2021.