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2,340 Miles frolm 1880
10:00 min archival assemblage short
director, producer, editor
Fall 2023



In association with the Chicago Architecture Biennial and hosted by Blanc Gallery, the Black Reconstruction Collective (BRC) presents UNMONUMENT CHICAGO: AFTER WORK, the first of 10 research-driven installments that will travel to sites throughout Black America. An industrial lift customized by olalekan jeyifous hosts audio, visual, and text components to support the gathering of a film screening. UNMONUMENT CHICAGO: AFTER WORK includes the premier of the film 2,340 Miles from 1880 by Zion Estrada in collaboration with V. Mitch McEwen with archival research by Cammy McEwen. Inspired by close readings of archival material on plantation worker strikes preceding the Great Migration, 2,340 Miles from 1880 stages an abstract meditation on Black work stoppage as a recursive and aesthetic practice, through found video, archival papers, photography, and original soundtrack.

https://chicagoarchitecturebiennial.org/program/unmonument-chicago-after-work/

A visual and sonic meditation on Black strikes and the Mississippi River as a flow of Black rebellion, this piece of cinema-as-archive-as-monument layers words and objects to speculate events that moved between Louisiana and Chicago. With found footage and original digital drawings and archival papers from the Amistad Research Center, the 12 minute video follows the flow of archives from rebellions on the plantation to ephemera at the South Side Chicago Arts Center, from ecosystemic destruction to a sense of the Great Migration as a fantasy space and a film waiting to be lived. 2,340 Miles from 1880 charts along the 2,340 miles of the Mississippi River a montage of Black life on the move and in the chorus of the multitude, where the stillness of watching a film and halting work on a petrochemical plant or a plantation tracks closely to lighting it all on fire. Weighted by Delta binaural frequencies, found sounds and field recordings, the film’s sonic layering forms an extension of deep listening as rebellion practice.

UNMONUMENT CHICAGO: AFTER WORK marks the first time that the BRC’s creative collaborative practice has extended beyond the ten founding members and awarded fellows. BRC presents this UnMonument to the Great Migration and from the Great Migration for the Chicago Architecture Biennial 5: “This is a Rehearsal.” Blanc Gallery will host UNMONUMENT CHICAGO: AFTER WORK alongside AT FIRST GLANCE (Oct 14 – November 25 2023), the third installment of Patric McCoy’s poetic collection of Black male vernacular photography, curated by Viktor L. Ewing-Givens.


Zion Estrada (she/her) is an interdisciplinary artist researcher living on Gabrielleno/Tongva/Chumash Territory. Her work flows between archival assemblage filmmaking, sonic collage production and experiential design.

Zion’s  experimental collage language in film and sonic works often use layering of field recordings, found sounds and carefully curated sound clips that score a line of discourse that complicate temporality, history and meaning making. Her practice is informed by the palimpsest and Pauline Olivero’s Deep Listening. 

She is most interested in the non-verbal  and non-human qualities of storytelling from the African diaspora (specifically the Caribbean) and how sounds hold the spirits of the past and the alchemic power to magnetize communities, movement, moods, and healing. She draws from the traditions of Black Trans abolitionists care making, sex worker solidarity,  doula presence practices and movement architects love of release.

Zion is currently is practicing in emergent transformative justice work with Abolition Dream lab practicing in radical learning communities how to prepare, account, release and re-story the harms we have caused, the roots the harms have in culture and systemic violence  while centering care, healing and rest.

Zion is the Creative Director of Black Discourse, co-founder of Wild Grass Design + Research Lab and owner of BZE Consultant LLC.  She holds a M.A. ED focused in participatory research and  linquistic learning through improve and play.

PREVIOUSLY
Director of Programs at BLD PWR; holds 10yrs as educator and curriculum developer.

CURRENTLY
Board member at Citizens of Culture
Exhibitor at the Ghetto Biennale in Jacmel, Haiti 2024
Participant in MIT Worlding Project Community 2023