Black International Cinema Berlin

English Version / Deutsche Version

Footprints in the Sand?

(an exploration – excavation)

How does the ground look like
On which we walk?
What is the composition
Of the ground on which we stand
How many people
Have walked there before us?
And do we know, can we see
Footprints, imprints, inscriptions
And do they remain
In sand or stone?
How do we get to know
What those before us did for us?
Of all those who contributed to life
Who do we recognize?

Footprints, imprints on the ground
Footprints in the sand?
Stories inscribed in the landscape
Only until the coming of another wave?
Whose footprints are remembered?
Whose prints are washed away?
Whose patterns are made visible
By remembering, honouring footprints
As evidence of activity
Of journeys, and of existence
Like contributions written on the pavement

Yes for how long
Will those footsteps remain
For all to be seen?
Until the next wave
Might bury these prints like an illusion
As if these prints never existed
As if these feet hadn’t been there
Like history being washed away
Like African origins being forgotten

And so these footsteps become
At best part of the underground
Parts of the anatomy, archeology of knowledge

But then again their memory is not certain
Their existence may be denied
For lack of evidence

In order to defy
This danger of denial
Of those faded footprints
They need to be fossilized
Their stories
Need to be visibilized
Their presence remembered
Before layers of new sand
Bury what’s underneath
And fail to notice
The texture of the ground
That they walk on

This is what Fountainhead Tanz Theatre does
Fountainhead features footprints
For us to be able to
See, notice, recognize and remember
What may be buried in the sea
The people who made up
The nature of the sea
And the land
And theirs and our culture
And ours and their life and legacy
By assuming responsibility
And making sacrifices necessary
To look at lost history
And turn it into found history
Narrated story
For continuity and presence

Footprints unearthed
Like faces emerged from the shadows
Evidence of activity excavated
The story of existence expanded
The silence of empty spaces
Exchanged with information
For us to learn
And reach beyond our dimension

Footprints in the sand?
No, footprints that now stand
On solid ground
Footprints enlightened by Fountainhead
Let it be known, let it be said
There are voices talking
And they are to be heard
There have been feet walking
And they are screened
And written down in print.

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The lessons of history arrive in the form of personal experiences, books, media presentations, paintings, architecture and so on.

How these materials are interpreted and perhaps, through the ages, re-interpreted assuming the information is included, varies according to the group or the individual perspective, interests, socio-economic influences and opportunities.

As we pass through the formal educational process, we are informed of histories; others and ours.

It generally requires an enlightened mentor or parent to point out what is overlooked in the presentation of history, so earnestly injected into our academic and formative education.

Many years ago, as this awareness of history's exceptions were realized, my parents, John Willis Griffith, Edith Paulina Griffith, and my mentor, Oscar Brown Jr., pointed out the necessity for assuming responsibility and making sacrifices necessary to enlighten shadows and fill empty historical spaces.

So, the development of information, awareness, heightened sensibility and maturation leads to inevitable conclusions.

Fountainhead® Tanz Theatre from inception in 1980, remains an initiative and institution for the documentation and preservation of the existence and contributions of individuals and groups, to the societies in which they and we reside.

We are participants in the process of embedding in memories and stone, what previously might have been, "Footprints in the Sand?".


"I may not make it if I try, but I damn sure won´t if I don´t..."
Oscar Brown Jr.

"Mankind will either find a way or make one."
C.P. Snow

"Whatever you do..., be cool!"
Joseph Louis Turner

"Yes, I can...!"
Sammy Davis Jr.

"Yes, We can...!"
Barack Obama


Prof.  Donald Muldrow Griffith

US Embassy Berlin


wave magazine

united against racism


African Women in Europe

Fountainhead® Tanz Theatre
The Collegium - Forum & Television Program
Fountainhead® Distribution - Film & Anthologies
Classic In Black
Portraits and Poems


Transnational and Intercultural Diplomacy

"View to the Future - The Flag still flies"

Black International Cinema Berlin

May 2-6, 2012

Black International Cinema Berlin
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Workshop for
Puppet Theatre, Berlin
Footprints in the Sand?
an exploration - excavation
Poetry by Ursula Troche
PAR - Performing Arts Review
Taiwan 2008 / Portrait of
Prof. Donald Muldrow Griffith