Who We Are

Dr. Pia Deas, Founder & Host. As an Associate Professor of English at Lincoln University, she teaches in the English Department and Pan-Africana Studies program. Dr. Deas founded Contemporary Black Canvas in order to showcase the power of the Black imagination. She thoroughly enjoys interviewing contemporary artists, activists, scholars, and institution builders about the changes they are creating in their communities. She is the author of the poetry chapbook, Cargo. She lives in Philadelphia with her partner and their two cats.

Jasmine Newton, Research Assistant. A native of Brooklyn, New York, Jasmine is a double-major in Pan-Africana Studies and History at Lincoln University. In addition to working with CBC, she is also active in the Pan-Africana Student Union at Lincoln University. This past summer (2017) Jasmine was a Schomburg-Mellon Humanities Summer Institute Fellow at the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture.

Madison Washington, Research Assistant. Originally from Vallejo, California, Madison is a Pan-Africana Studies major and an International Relations minor at Lincoln University. She is a member of both the Horace Mann Bond Honors Program and the Pan-Africana Student Union. This past summer (2017) she interned at the Black Writers' Museum in Philadelphia.

Jakiyah Anderson, Resident Artist. A native of Washington D.C., she is a recent graduate of Lincoln University with her degree in visual arts. This past summer, she taught visual arts to at-risk youth in her neighborhood. She also co-founded a program called Bring Back Our Streets (BBOS) geared to providing school supplies and mentoring to students in Washington D.C. As the resident artist for CBC, Jakiyah has documented our events through video and photographs and she has designed CBC's logo and the website.

Contemporary Black Canvas is always looking for ways to grow our team. This fall 2017 we added two additional research assistants, Lincoln University junior Alaze Clausell and senior Dimita Pugh.