Nelson has directed works such as The Black Press: Soldiers Without Swords (1998), Marcus Garvey: Look for Me in the Whirlwind (2000), The Murder of Emmett Till (2003), We Shall Remain (2009), Freedom Riders (2010), Freedom Summer (2014), The Black Panthers: Vanguard of a Revolution (2015) and many more.
Many of his films have aired on PBA/PBS as specials, and his most recent work The Black Panthers: Vanguard of a Revolution premiered in the Sundance Film Festival and has garnered critical acclaim for its rawness.
According to the Smithsonianmag.com, the National Museum of African American History and Culture will now showcase Nelson’s work on the exterior of their building. On Nov. 16-18, the exterior will become a de facto five-story, block-long 3D canvas/movie screen, showing a seven-minute video, Commemorate and Celebrate Freedom. The video features civil rights activists from various eras such as Frederick Douglass and Ella Baker.
The video will be produced by the renowned filmmakers Nelson and president Marcia Smith of Firelight Media, and animated by Quixotic Entertainment, according to museum officials. After every sunset on the announced days, the seven-minute video will play on the museum’s south exterior, facing Madison Drive, and its west exterior, on 15th Street near the Washington Monument. Additionally, on the opening night, a live performance accompanied by an array of musicians, including R&B and gospel singer BeBe Winans.
The National Museum of African American History and Culture is designed by award winning Tanzanian architect David Adjaye and will officially open next fall.