Jake Meginsky & Ashley Clark | Ars Nova Workshop
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Milford Graves: A Mind-Body Deal

Jake Meginsky & Ashley Clark

In Conversation, with Milford Graves

December 21, 2020

Milford Graves has had an indelible impact on the lives of artists from a variety of disciplines, including filmmaker and composer Jake Meginisky. In 2018 Meginsky directed and produced the award-winning feature film, Milford Graves Full Mantis. The documentary is an intimate look at Graves’s life as a percussionist, researcher, performer, and teacher. In October 2018 it was featured at the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture’s inaugural film festival in Washington, D.C. Milford Graves Full Mantis is now streaming worldwide. Meginisky studied under Graves at Bennington College and was an integral member of the curatorial team for Milford Graves: A Mind-Body Deal.

Facilitating the conversation is writer and film programmer Ashley Clark. Originally from London, Clark has held roles at a number of arts organizations, including Director of Film Programming at the Brooklyn Academy of Music and curating the films for BFI – Black Star, a screening series based in the United Kingdom that recognized the accomplishments of Black people in film. He began his film criticism career in 2010 when he established the blog Permanent Plastic Helmet. Clark’s areas of interest include race and representation, and the histories and futures of Black British and Black American independent cinema. In 2015 he completed his first publication, Facing Blackness: Media and Minstrelsy in Spike Lee’s Bamboozled (The Critical Press, 2015).

Cover: Jake Meginsky, Graves in the Garden, 2020, digitally transferred video and 16mm film, 6:43 minutes.
Monday, December 21


  • Talks

Program Info

Free with Registration
All Ages

Sponsored by

Major support for Milford Graves: A Mind-Body Deal provided by The Pew Center for Arts & Heritage, with additional support from the Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts and the Joseph Robert Foundation.



Presented by

Milford Graves: A Mind-Body Deal, organized and presented by Ars Nova Workshop and Institute of Contemporary Art, University of Pennsylvania (ICA).


December 21, 2020 – “Jake Meginsky & Ashley Clark: In Conversation,” video recording of livestreamed program provided by ICA. (YouTube)

Related Media

Film trailer, Milford Graves Full Mantis, 2018, 91:00 min.
Words and music by Milford Graves. Directed by Jake Meginsky. Co-directed by Neil Young.

September 25, 2020 – January 24, 2021

Milford Graves: A Mind-Body Deal

  • Exhibition

Milford Graves: A Mind-Body Deal

An exhibition gathering the many-layered and multi-faceted works of free jazz pioneer and polymath Milford Graves. Presented by Ars Nova Workshop at the Institute of Contemporary Art, Philadelphia.