Starting in the late ‘6o’s, the boost of confidence in the black community led by Stokely Carmichael’s affirmations of Black Power would spread to all facets of life, including portraiture. Barkley L. Hendricks, born in Philadelphia and educated at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts and Yale University, would be on front lines in expressing this confidence through art. A predecessor to artists like Kehinde Wiley, Hendricks portraits are infused with a sense of pride never quite seen before in black art. Full length portraits with a blank or neutral background, Hendricks gives full attention to his subject. Using mostly African-American North easterners as his subject Hednricks changed the perception of who could be captured and immortalized on canvas.
Blood (Donald Formey), 1975
Oil and acrylic on cotton canvas
72 x 50 ½ inches
Most things in life are unplanned. When I started this site almost two years ago I envisioned everything that went along with it, except the work. As a college student who was holding down two jobs and an internship at the time I figured this would be a part time gig to help me strengthen my writing skills and to talk about the things that interest me. Somewhere along the way, while trying to keep my school/work life intact and maintain a social life, I lost track of this project. It wasn’t until recently that I realized I had a gold mine. No one is really discussing the things that I was and gearing it toward an audience of my peers.
The number of art and culture blogs dedicated to MOC’s are few and far between. But soon came the doubts. It’s been almost a year since I last posted, do I still have an audience? Will people take me seriously this time or are they expecting me to fade away like the last time? I let these questions and many others rule my psyche for a while until I put on some Biggie, built up my courage and here we are.
With this new envisioning of The Last Knight you can expect the same posts on style, art, film and literature and a few surprises along the way. I hope this time you can rock with me for the foreseeable future, or at least until I get busy again :-/. Until that time comes stay tuned and keep the follows coming.
All the best,
Today is the official dedication of the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial in Washington D.C.. After taking in the special event on networks like BET AND Centric check out this clip of the man himself on NBC’S Meet the Press.
Identity crisis is a major part of depictions of inner-city life. Usually the characters are trying to reconcile their moral character with the behavior they feel is necessary to survive “on the streets”. In his 1967 memoir Down These Mean Streets, Piri Thomas’ identity crisis comes in a different form.
Before the moral struggle even comes into play Thomas has to struggle with his ethnic identity and what it makes him. Being the only “negrito” in a Latin family that ignored its African heritage, Thomas was often confused about his place in society.
With a story that stretches from the Great Depression to the post-war era Down These Mean Streets chronicles Thomas’ journey of self discovery through the many trials of his life. From drug addiction to a stint in prison the story culminates with his realization that the only one who can define who he is, is him.
Down These Mean Streets is available on Amazon.com and in bookstores nation wide.
This year the Sundance Film Festival made the decision to release some of it’s features and short on Youtube. One of the titles chosen is Close by Tisch graduate Tahir Jetter.Clocking in at almost eight minutes Close gives viewers an interesting view of the male female relationship. According to the synopsis:
One night after a casual ‘visit’, Angela is all but ready to leave Derek’s apartment. Derek, however, is determined no to let her go without a fight
This Thursday, Wayne State University in Detroit, MI will be hosting an art talk with prominent artist and academic Atta Kwami. The lecture entitled “Imagining the African Metropolis:Urban Experience and Contemporary Art in Johannesburg, Nairobi, Kumasi and Accra” will be held at 5:00p.m. in Kresge Auditorium located in the Purdy/Kresge Library.
Click the link above to view the livestream of the Burberry Prorsum Menswear Fall 2011 collection in Milan.
Image via GQ.com
Showing his versatility Junya Watanabe gives two vastly different yet cohesive looks in his Fall/Winter and Spring/Summer collections. Fall/Winter offers muted mod vintage looks with a masculine and hipster feel. The Spring/Summer collection goes the complete opposite way offering striped nautical shirts with brightly colored duffle jackets giving a classic Americana feel.
Images via GQ.com
Tanya Hamilton’s directorial debut Night Catches Us starring Anthony Mackie and Kerry Washington tells the story of two former members of the Black Panther Party struggling to come to terms with the past.
When Marcus (Mackie) returns home after years of self imposed exile to attend his fathers funeral he comes face to face with the past he tried to escape. Patricia (Washington), a single mother who uses charity work and good deeds as an escape from her mistakes, is forced to confront them head on upon Marcus’ return.
Featuring a phenomenal score by The Roots Night Catches Us is now playing in select theatres and available On Demand. For theatre dates and listings visit NightCatchesUs.com
Today Ralph Lauren is an icon of American Fashion. Known for his famous shirt sleeved collard short with the eponymous Polo logo. After having
success in 1970 with his menswear Ralph Lauren ascended into new heights with his role as costume designer for the 1974 film The Great Gatsby.
Producing sleek Jazz Age looks the movie started a craze for vintage 1920’s apparel. With the “Gentleman Look” making a return to menswear it is impossible to dismiss The Great Gatsby as an example of true American Style. Even Ralph Lauren has taken a retrospective on the style shown in this film with his Rugby line created in 2004.