NEXT OF KIN
The concept of Black solidarity across geographical boundaries along with The Black Lives Matter Movement inspires Next of Kin.
Next of Kin is a story inspired by Afrofuturism— a cultural aesthetic that portrays the African identity uninterrupted by cultural alienation and dislocation.
The tragic, unjust deaths of African American George Floyd and other Blacks serve as a reminder that progress for equality for the human race still has to be made to protect not only Black lives but their healthy sense of identity, freedom and success. The world is forced once again to reflect on the negative treatment and plight of Black citizens in our respective nations. How then can we also as a community support our Black brothers and sisters? An open conversation is needed for Blacks to feel safe and empowered in all aspects of their societies including Black-owned businesses.
The concept of Black solidarity across geographical boundaries along with The Black Lives Matter Movement inspires Next of Kin. The story’s scene is set in Kingston, Jamaica. The clothing selected from EtAl Store features vibrant digitized colors in African prints styled for the futuristic aesthetic. The hoop earrings featured are a popular accessory to the culture from Hoop 88 Dreams.
I wanted to shine a light on Black beauty and Black excellence: our strength and what we can accomplish. The Black woman is the most unprotected being. As black people we must support our community. The idea is that each one of us should be our next of kin, as it is liberating to see us rise up together. The goal of Next of Kin is to reclaim black self esteem that has been destroyed from slavery and in the present day constitution that oppresses Blacks systematically.
Jamaica, home of Marcus Garvey, for years has been a beacon of Black identity and pride as noted by great Black American leaders such as Martin Luther King Jr. and Malcolm X. This was the venue of choice for these Afro American leaders as they felt it offered a space of belonging, inspiration and refuge for formally dejected Blacks and for the human race in general. These leaders found it refreshing that so many Blacks, and other racial groupings in Jamaica felt a deep sense of belonging and privilege about their birthright, in being just Jamaican.
Creative Director and Stylist Anya Swapp
Assistant Director Dominique Collins
Photographer Mikhail Ranklin
Lighting Assist Rakeem Burrell
Models Thandolee Green & Symoné Currie
MUA Sue Gregg
Hairstylists All Natural Beauty Salon & Gossy Braids