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Who protected memorials at BLM fence? (special guest Nadine Seiler)

This Saturday’s topic is: Nadine Seiler (special guest)

Our special drop in guest will be Nadine Seiler, the “accidental curator”of the Black Lives Matter Memorial Fence. As always when we have a special guest for Q&A this is from 10:30am to 11:30am. You are welcome, of course, to arrive or leave any time during Death Doula Day office hours 10am until noon.

This week you get to meet a person who takes death seriously. Specifically, death of Black people. More specifically, death of Black people during encounters with police.

Black Lives Matter is a phrase whose use tells us more about the user than the meaning, but at its most basic, it is that the lives of Black people matter. An idea that shouldn’t be controversial or divisive.

Nadine, a professional organizer in Maryland, was one of many who were drawn to the place outside the White House that is now known as Black Lives Matter plaza. When Nadine began spending time there during the George Floyd protests, she took special interest in the names, the memorials, the artwork, the emotional and often satirical materials left on and around the chain link fence that surrounded the White House grounds and beyond. People came from all over the world to experience that fence, and often to bring memorials and their grief to be shared there.

Nadine saw the way these items were trampled, weather-beaten, and vandalized, and she saw a job to do. No one asked her, and she was helped eventually by others, but she acted to care for the memorials on her inimitable initiative. You will have seen her picture in countless press photos, with her signature pussy hat and t-shirts and signs. And mascara. You can read many interviews with Nadine, but you can also see the items from that historic time in person in museum collection, and digital archives. The Black lives that were named and honored on the BLM Memorial Fence live on because Nadine protected them: with zip ties and tape and often overnight sleeping next to the fence. She withstood weather, counterprotesters, and violent threats to honor those lives.

Meet Nadine on Saturday and ask her your questions about why it mattered, what the Fence collection means, and get tips on being an independent advocate in a divided world. What did “black lives matter” mean to Nadine?

Washington Post: A White House fence’s Black Lives Matter art has been saved for history

NPR: She guarded the Black Lives Matter memorial. Now, she’s working to protect its art

District of Columbia Public Library DIGDC: Black Lives Matter Memorial Fence Photographs Collection

NBC Washington: Two Activists Unite to Protect BLM Signs at Lafayette Square

All are welcome. In fact, bring a family member or friend! Do rsvp by clicking HERE so we can have enough chairs and snacks prepared.

We explore new topics and have drop-in guests every week. Get the upcoming topics and news by signing up for the Death Doula Day mailing list by clicking HERE.