Who we are
“Coolness or gentleness of character is so important in our lives. Coolness is the correct way you represent yourself to a human being.”—J.K. Adejumo
The Three Rivers Institute of Afrikan Art & Culture is a community conscious of its extended family interests, and its growing collective sense of identity. We are Artists with a global reach. We are of many faiths, from many parts of the world, organized around one abiding principle—extended family roots our community. Our art is the creative process that brings these extensions into collective focus.
We have raised the resources from within our community and sojourned to Guinea and Senegal to unlock our minds from the Western propaganda about Afrikan people and our condition. In Afrika we found strong people, intact families, and traditional institutions vigorously pursuing lives shaped from family relations. We found worldviews different than our own. There we found ourselves and plotted a way back to our right minds—the Three Rivers Institute of Afrikan Art & Culture is that way.
Afrikan Art and Culture
Three Rivers Institute of Afrikan Art & Culture (TRIAAC) is a learning center where young people and adults can find unique opportunities to experience positive aspects of Afrikan American heritage. TRIAAC engagement produces enriched self-concept, enhanced self-esteem, reinforced cultural identity, and a grounded sense of community. A well-balanced perception of one’s cultural heritage is essential to productive human expression and community engagement.
Mandé Music Focus
TRIAAC chose the traditional drumming of the Mandé-speaking people of West Africa as its musical focus, because this music represents a centuries old cultural practice that is symbolic of community solidarity and family integrity. Beginning with the liberation of Guinea in 1958, Mandé Music has become one of the singularly most popular music traditions across the globe. Worldwide it is played and combined with other cultural music forms in countries from Australia to South and Central America, throughout Asia and Europe, and more recently in North America.
At TRIAAC traditional Mandé drumming is a healing art and community-building practice that develops self-esteem, strengthens consciousness, and fixes an ensemble focus. Through it the brain’s hemispheres are synchronized. Engaged over an extended period of time, drumming can lower blood pressure, tone muscles, improve listening skills, and concentration, and enhance your social life. Drumming enables the participant to disengage from mental activity and brings participants 100% into the present moment, which gives a great deal of relief from mental stress and allows better focus and clarity.