Underground Railroad by Colson Whitehead book cover

Hi, I’m Maya, and I’d love to tell you about the I, Too, Arts Collective. This is a new non-profit initiative being launched by author Renée Watson to preserve and build on the legacy of poet, Langston Hughes. I was so excited when I heard that Renée was doing this, because, like so many people, I have enjoyed the poetry of Langston Hughes since I was a little, little kid. In fact, I still have my very first book of poetry, which is called My Black Me: A Beginning Book of Black Poetry, which features four or five Langston Hughes poems whose lines I return to and whose themes and ideas I explore in my own writing.

You can scroll down below to see more details about the I, Too, Arts Collective, but the vision really is two-fold: to preserve Langston Hughes’s brownstone, the physical space where he lived. His legacy is preserved and secured, of course, in all of the many anthologies that feature his work. But there is something about being in the space and experiencing the space a writer actually inhabited in their every day life that can be a really special and transformative experience, particularly for emerging writers. I think there’s something special about what she’s trying to do with his space.

Secondly, the fact that she wants the use of the space to be not just someone’s home or a dry, dusty house museum, but a space that actively promotes writing, that teaches people, that gives people a space to perform, a space to explore, and a space to connect. Thanks so much for watching and I hope you too will support the I, Too, Arts Collective.

How to Support

  • To stay informed about I, Too, Arts Collective progress, please follow the organization on Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook, and be on the lookout for the monthly newsletter.
  • Please consider making a tax-deductible contribution to I, Too, Arts Collective via its fiscal sponsor, DreamYard.Make the check payable to DreamYard and write I, Too, Arts Collective in the memo line.Send payment to:
    I, Too, Arts Collective
    P.O. Box 1710
    New York, NY 10037