New York City is an important international center for music, film, theater, dance and visual art. It is shaped by years of immigration and to many it is the cultural capital of the United States.

In a city so rich with landmarks and world history, it’s no wonder there is an endless list of exhibits, museums, and music halls one can visit to celebrate Black History Month.

The Studio Museum of Harlem hosts many events to cultivate Black culture. In honor of Black History Month, the museum hosted a small group of Cave Canem fellows as they shared new pieces responding to works from the current exhibition, 30 Seconds Off an Inch.

Cave Canem is a home for the many voices of African American poetry and is committed to cultivating the artistic and professional growth of African American poets.

Tess Sol Schwab, Assistant Director and John Driscoll, Owner of Babcock Galleries, explained the importance of African American history through art by choosing an exhibit called African Americans: Seeing and Seen, 1766 – 1916.

“There’s some very beautiful and dignified portraits of African Americans …but then on the other hand, there’s some pretty blatantly racist works..that show African American in a very negative light,” explained Tess.

The exhibit is open until April 2010 and hopes to inspire people of all colors, genders, and nationalities, that even in great duress, great achievement is possible.

Jazz is said to be one of the things that put Harlem on the map. The New Amsterdam Music Association strives to promote the Jazz legacy and has events year round. Black History Month is one of their most prosperous months, with weekly events in which the community is extremely active.

This 106-year-old organization has seen world-renowned talent such as Sarah Vaughn, Count Basie, Ella Fitzgerald, Charlie Parker and Lena Horne pass through its door and hopes to live on for another century.