by Rose Miyonga
It’s hard to come up with a pithy sentence that sums up what Isabel Adomakoh Young does. Writer, activist, actor, musician, model, organiser, drag king… the strings to her bow are so many and varied that I struggle to see how she finds time to sleep. Not only does she do all these things, but she does them with vitality and success, like a Renaissance woman for the fourth wave intersectional feminist generation.
In 2004, aged just 8, she published the first of the Lionboy trilogy as ‘Zizou Corder’, the pseudonym she shares with her mother, Louisa Young.… Read more...
By Charlie Siddick
Imagine waking up to an email asking you whether you’d like to interview one of your idols… it’s every writer’s wet dream. That’s what happened to me recently on a gloomy and otherwise non-remarkable December day, “ThandieKay would probably love an interview with Pat Cleveland?” read the subject line, followed by a brief description of Pat’s achievements and accolades, which let me tell you are hard to compress. “Yes, ThandieKay would love to interview Pat Cleveland” I hastily responded without consulting either Thandie or Kay, because I mean, Pat’s the perfect fit- and one of the world’s first ‘African-American’ supermodels, and certainly the most fabulous.… Read more...
By Charlie Siddick
The Italian tyre company, Pirelli, have published a calendar annually since 1964, and is known as a showcase for iconic photographers to shoot high fashion models normally robed in, rather than disrobed of the YSL. This iconic tradition is presented as a limited edition ‘art calender’, unlike the usual fayre adorning the sooty walls of 70’s car mechanics.
The last decade has seen the company increasingly garner criticism not only for it’s regressive depiction of femininity, but also for its lack of diversity. For the most part, the women displayed were always three things: white, thin, and traditionally beautiful from a western perspective.… Read more...
I’ve always admired Margaret Atwood’s dystopian 1985 novel ‘The Handmaid’s Tale’, which tells the story of a religious coup that results in a theocracy called Gilead, where women are stripped of rights and forced (the world has, except for a few, become mysteriously infertile) to bear children for the society’s elite. Like all dystopian tales, this is an exaggerated version of an existing societal construct and due to the present US administration, and thanks to Hula TV’s brilliant adaptation, the novel has become relevant again. Back in 1985 I could never have imagined a man as regressive as Trump becoming a president, or the idea of free women’s sexual healthcare and contaception being threatened in a supposedly first-world country, or the need to be still protesting about the reproductive rights of women over their own bodies-but here we are.… Read more...
by Maya Kay
The show opens in 1963 at the height of the Civil Rights movement amidst the dreams of integration.
From the Spiral art collective devoted to, and composed solely of African-American artists founded by Romare Bearden, Charles Alston, Norman Lewis and Hale Woodruff; to Just Above Midtown (JAM), there have been pioneers who have dedicated gallery space to exhibit African-American artists and works by people of colour. From Betye Saar to Barkley L Hendricks, this latest retrospective of works from one of the many pockets of the African diaspora explores two decades of America’s eclectic and unquestionably talented African-American artists.
by Rose Miyonga
When I was a child, my family and I spent our summers at festivals. Almost always with a face paint, quite often naked, my sister and I, along with a cohort of friends old and new would roam freely through fields filled with music, art and fun.
When I started going to big festivals as a teenager, I was, frankly, disappointed. Gone were the compost toilets and the communal canteens, and gone, too, were the feelings of safety and inclusivity, the feeling that I was a member of a community whose participation was encouraged and appreciated. Instead, I felt like a consumer, a customer who had paid to be entertained.… Read more...
by Rose Miyonga and Jamila Prowse
Called the best thing on instagram by Refinery 29, body positive activist, model and nascent documentary maker Naomi Shimada is a warm ray of sunshine in our cynical times.
Rarely seen without a brightly coloured outfit, a huge smile, and a great pair of kicks, half Japanese, raised-in-Spain Naomi is one of a kind and I adore her.
Hilary Taymour is a friend and she’s the designer behind Collina Strada. Hilary started her casting process by deliberately selecting models from countries on Trump’s ‘travel ban’ list. However that proved harder than it from there we started selecting a wide range of models with different ethnic backgrounds, beliefs, ideologies that are fearful of the consequences during this presidential term.… Read more...
Born: 02/03/1994 in North West London
Education: sixth form, UCS. BA from the Courtauld Institute of Art
Nationality: British mother and Jamaican/British mix father.
Work: model since 2010, creative director of clothing company Amarcord
Hopes for the future: to continue to work with inspiring creatives and help make the world a better place.
Elle Magazine’s interpretation of the Lord’s Prayer, “On Earth as it is in Heaven”, could not be a more fitting mantra for the digital age. With a rapturous growth in the cult following of the picture box in our living rooms, the magazine celebrated TV fanaticism in their February 2017 issue with some of 2016’s favourite characters and 2017’s most anticipated performances. We were excited to see the most amazing bevy of powerhouse women gracing the pages of Elle (with a couple token men thrown in). It’s the kind of religiosity ThandieKay can’t help wanting to be a part of, hence, the repost.… Read more...