Marcus Bookstore Project Mission
The Marcus Bookstore Project, also known as "The First Floor", is creating a critical and intellectual place of convening for the Fillmore African American community by reimagining and reintroducing Marcus Book Stores into the physical structure of the African American Art and Culture Complex (AAACC). The Marcus Bookstore, has been an hub for African American literary and activist culture in the Bay Area since 1960. We will work with our community partners to design and install an interactive experience which aims to highlight the intersection of new media in local storytelling to activate and increase the use of the first floor at AAACC.
About the Marcus Bookstore Project
By empowering the AAACC through creation of a literary thirdspace, we are facilitating and empowering the the cultural capital of the neighborhood. The eviction of beloved and historic Marcus Book Store in the Fillmore in 2014 represented more than the suppression of black media in San Francisco – it spoke to the longstanding issue of African Americans being pushed out of San Francisco. This initiative arises out of the social challenge of creating sustainable environments for African Americans in the Fillmore. These two organizations have a deep, familial connection across generations – literally. Mohammad of the AAACC grew up connected to the Johnson family (founders and owners of Marcus Book Stores), hanging out with the Karen’s kids while his father was a very active patron of former Fillmore book store. The existing rumblings of communication between the two organizations about why this joint venture should happen was already present. We as design facilitators and consultants bring our design thinking and fresh ideas into the how-space for this project. By working in conjunction with Marcus Book Store and AAACC, this student run collective aims to support the Sankofa-cation of black media in the Fillmore.