Lucille - Various - Black Is Beautiful
Label: Indisc - 2100517 • Series: Domino - Original Recordings - 17 • Format: CD Compilation • Country: Belgium • Genre: Funk / Soul •
The photographs depict dapper black men in suits, congregating at jazz concerts, and black women with natural hairstyles striking elegant poses in African-print clothing. As the exhibition makes clear, though, Mr. Brathwaite, born in Brooklyn in to Barbadian immigrants, was raised in the Bronx. Inaround the time of his high school graduation, he teamed up with his brother Elombe Brath and a group of friends to form what became the African Jazz-Art Society and Studios.
Both the artist and his brother adopted West African names in place of their given ones, and Elombe shortened his last name. The organization was part social club, part arts collective, part political statement: Mr.
The society also began organizing jazz concerts, first in the Bronx and then in Harlem. As the popularity of the shows grew, so did the profiles of the musicians and Mr. Some of the strongest shots from this period demonstrate the power of music to bring people together, like a picture of a group of black teenagers awaiting the arrival of James Brown at an airport. Their signs, grins and raised hands convey an irrepressible energy that evokes Brown even without his physical presence.
Ina protest against the opening of a white-owned wig shop on th Street helped catalyze the Black Is Beautiful movement. A photograph by Mr. Brathwaite shows a woman in slim heels pacing in front of the store with a sign. She carries herself with such confidence and poise that she could be walking a runway — and, indeed, the protester is Nomsa Brath, the wife of Elombe and one of the Grandassa Modelsa group Lucille - Various - Black Is Beautiful jazz-arts society started the year before.
Although it included members of both genders, women, with their natural hairstyles and brightly patterned, often homemade clothes, were the stars; they were also, as Tanisha C.
In Mr. They smile, gaze and cock their hips with hard-earned confidence and self-possession. In one magnetic image from abouta model looks up through long, carefully articulated lashes. Her semi-nudity gives her sex appeal, but her perfectly rounded Afro and the light blue background also make her look angelic. Another striking pair of photographs shot outdoors at Lucille - Various - Black Is Beautiful public school in features groups of female and male Grandassa models, facing off as if they were gangs.
No one smiles; the women lean back with an air of suspicion, The Coasters - Young Blood / Searchin the men stand with their hands clasped in front of them, Lucille - Various - Black Is Beautiful if they were bodyguards. This is as close to militancy as Mr.
Their Afros may hint at the Modern Cosmology - Summer Long Power movement, but theirs was a different kind of activism — a politics of body positivity and aesthetic liberation.