Black hair has been the bane of controversy, dialogue, a medium of expression and rebellion and in itself art. This post will look at three art projects that celebrate black hair and the amazing artists behind them.
THE HAIR APPOINTMENT
Josef Adamu & Helena Koudou
The Hair Appointment is a short film that focuses on the beauty of African hair braiding. It tells the story of the community surrounding getting your hair braided at a salon rather than at home. ( VIA iD-VICE)
Josef Adamu a Toronto based creative director and founder of The Sunday School, a collaborative brand agency and a platform of story telling from a black perspective discovered Helena Koudou a hair braider at her family’s Brooklyn Hair Salon, Alima’s Hair Braiding and saw the opportunity to tell a story about hair braiding .
The film became an interactive evening at Okay Space Gallery in Spring 2018. In August 2019 a second exhibition was held at Peckham Palms in London.
Braids is a 10 piece exhibit which was on display at MoCADA ( the Museum of Contemporary African Diasporan Arts) in Brooklyn. Chicago artist Shani Crowe braided and photographed each look herself.
Shani Crowe, picked up hair braiding from watching her aunts and older cousins braid. Also, in addition to braiding she makes ink illustrations, collages, plush items and experimental videos.
A STATEMENT OF PRIDE
A Statement of Pride consists of passport style photographs taken over a 5 month period, of Favour wearing a different hairstyle (all self style). From Janet Jackson inspired to that of a traditional Edo woman.
Favour, a multidisciplinary artist, says: “ My hair is mine. I can do whatever I want with it, no one else is in control. It’s my power, my strength, my crown. I can wear it anywhere and in anyway I want to” (VIA Refinery 29)
There are so many more art projects and artists that celebrate and feature the joy of black hair. See below a few more links.