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Art - Page 2

4 mins read

World’s Largest Museum dedicated to Black Civilizations opens in Senegal

After 52 years of waiting, Senegal is finally opening what has been described as the largest museum of Black civilization in the capital, Dakar.

With close to 14,000 square metres of floor space and capacity for 18,000 exhibits, the new Museums of Black Civilizations is already capable of competing with the National Museum of African American History in Washington.

The exhibition halls include Africa Now, showcasing contemporary African art and The Caravan and the Caravel, which tells the story of the trade in human beings – across the Atlantic and through the Sahara – that gave rise to new communities of Africans in the Americas.

“Kachireme” by Cuban artist Leandro Soto finds parallels between Nigerian ancestral spirits and Native American beliefs

These diaspora communities – such as in Brazil, the United States and the Caribbean – are recognized as African civilizations in their own right.

Since the museum could contain works owned by France since colonization, Senegal’s culture minister has called for the restitution by France of all Senegalese artwork on the back of a French report urging the return of African art treasures.

Visitors look at exhibits at the newly inaugurated Museum of Black Civilizations in Dakar, Senegal REUTERS/Zohra Bensemra

Apart from suffering from the negative consequences of colonialism, Africans have had to negotiate for the return of valuable historical cultural artifacts that were smuggled out of their countries.

These priceless monuments, which symbolize African identity are currently scattered across the world, with an impressive number in British and French Museums.

This striated kifwebe mask hails from the Democratic Republic of Congo

Many African countries have called for the return of these treasures but are yet to receive any positive response from these western countries, which are making huge sums of money from these objects, with some even insisting that they were obtained legally.

The museum has a pan-African focus with pieces from across Africa and the Caribbean

French President Emmanuel Macron recently announced that his country will return 26 artifacts taken from Benin in 1892. The thrones and statues, currently on display at the Quai Branly museum in Paris, were taken during a colonial war against the then Kingdom of Dahomey.

Senegal’s late president Leopold Sedar Senghor was the first to propose the idea of a museum about the civilizations of black Africa during a world festival of black artists in Dakar in 1966.

In December 2011, Senegalese President Abdoulaye Wade laid the foundation stone in the capital Dakar but works were suspended during a political change until the subsequent leader, Macky Sall set the project rolling between December 2013 and December 2015.

The museum was built in part to a $34.6 million donation from China.


Source: BBC

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8 mins read

10 Tips For Photographing Darker Skin Tones

No, you’re not crazy: photographing darker skin tones, like mine, is harder than photographing lighter ones. Before anyone goes and reports me for reverse racism, which isn’t a thing, lets talk about this in purely technical terms.

From the 1950s well into the 1980s, Kodak, the standard in film processing, provided photo labs with “Shirley cards,” photos meant to be used to calibrate skin tones and light levels for photo printing.

There were many “Shirleys” over the decades (the name came from the original model)—but as you might assume, they were all fair-skinned Caucasian women. So unless you processed your own images, they were developed to best complement light skin—no matter the skin tones or hues in your photos. Further, the dynamic range of Kodak film was biased toward lighter skin.

Kodak “Shirley cards.”

This created a situation in which photos of people with darker skin, especially photos with both lighter and darker skin tones in them, were very difficult to expose properly. In an NPR interview, photographer Syreeta McFadden explained, “A lot of [the design of film and motion technology] was conceived with the idea of the best representation of white people.

And I don’t mean to say that it was a deliberate and exclusionary practice, but [it was] much more of a willful obliviousness, if you will. So color film in its early stages pretty much developed around trying to measure the image against white skin.”

Thankfully, that is less of an issue now. Technology has gotten better (although there have been some problems along the way). Color film and digital color sensors don’t butcher darker skin tones anymore (hooray!), but we aren’t totally out of the woods yet. If, like me, you love to use older film presets or if you just want to photograph a range of subjects, you need to be cognizant of the default toward lighter skin and how to correct it.

With that in mind, a question remains: What is the best way to photograph darker skin tones? Like a softbox or a white wall, lighter skin picks up and reflects light rather easily. This helps photographers better capture it with low levels of flash or in low-wattage light. Darker skin, however, isn’t as reflective, so how you light your subjects and choose backgrounds must change, to consciously and successfully light people with darker skin.


1. For a photo including people with different skin tones, place your primary light source closer to the subject with darker skin. Note that if you do this, you may have to burn a little in post to make sure the subjects with lighter skin aren’t too bright.

This isn’t to say that you should blow out their skin or use only one light source. If you are shooting outdoors, bring in a reflector or have your darker-skinned subject interact in closer proximity to the light source.


2. Be conscious of undertones. Darker skin has undertones, just like lighter ones do. As you choose environments for portraiture, look for complementary colors that work well with the undertones for a soothing portrait, or contrasting or clashing ones for a more provocative look.

For example: I leaned into Jihaari’s skin’s orange undertones by placing him in compositional opposition to a sign with similar colors (left photo). And you can see how the subtle inclusion of red in the setting of the photo on the right goes smoothly with Kelechi’s undertones.

3. Keep lighting off the walls for a more cinematic feel—you want to create depth with your imagery. Using varying stages of light allows you to have a more dynamic frame.

Use a hair light. Don’t rob your subjects of the complexity and detail in their hair by not lighting it properly. This makes sense for everyone whose hair is dark. Make sure your have light that appropriately frames your subject’s hair.

4. Use a hair light. Don’t rob your subjects of the complexity and detail in their hair by not lighting it properly. This makes sense for everyone whose hair is dark. Make sure your have light that appropriately frames your subject’s hair.

5. Embrace the beauty of a well-lit silhouette and how it drapes light around darker skin features.

This image (below) is a favorite of mine. In low light, I will often opt for a silhouette, using the strongest light to kiss the edges of someone’s visage. It gives an effect of mystery and grandeur.


6. Employ the Highlights slider in Adobe Photoshop Lightroom CC or Curves adjustments in Photoshop CC to create soft contrast across darker skin. Even light looks magical on darker skin tones; it provides tonality and detail.

7. Harsh light is more forgiving, yes, but reflective light is your best friend. Use that to your advantage. Bouncing light or using diffusers reveals the complexity of facial features.

8. Resist the urge to lighten someone up…. I’ll say it again for the folks in the back: Properly lighting dark skin is not the same as dodging dark skin in Photoshop.

9. If you have multiple skin tones, set the median and use Photoshop’s Dodge tool and Burn tool to help you out. This is something you want to employ only if you have just one light source—for instance, if you’re shooting outdoors and have no way to soften the light. If this is the case, shoot each subject properly exposed so you have a digital example of what their skin tone is like, and then use Photoshop to closely achieve that.

10. With skin tones in general, pay attention to the background you’re using. Don’t tuck darker-skinned subjects against dark backgrounds unless you’re going to light them separately.



As we slowly march to a more racially equitable future, it’s imperative that we know how to light various skin tones properly to give them the visibility they deserve. Study the work of artists who do a great job lighting various skin tones and where the light they use is coming from. That’s what helped me on my journey to being a better artist.


By Aundre Larrow

Photographs by Aundre Larrow. Visit his portfolio site to see more of his work

8 mins read

The Carters “APES**T” challenges art history’s erasure of Black culture

The Carters blessed stans everywhere when they released their joint album, Everything Is Love, on June 16th. Rumors had been circulating about the prospect of a collaborative effort for a while, with neither Beyoncé or Jay-Z confirming or denying it.

Ultimately, the duo rolled out the album unexpectedly (which has become their preferred method of expression), surprising both the world and the London audience of their On The Run II tour.

The album is headed by the single, “APESHIT,” which comes with a 6-minute long music video that shows the Carters as we’ve seen them before — madly in love, wealthy, and happily putting their own spin on an ancient institution.

This time around, they took over the famous Louvre museum in Paris and made it their property in the Ricky Saiz-directed visual. Jay-Z specifically has used music and music videos to speak about his relationship with fine art before. In 2017’s “The Story of O.J,” he talks about buying million-dollar art, watching its value increase, and eventually giving it to his children.

It is clear that he understands art’s worth (from a financial and emotional standpoint) and views it as a medium that will make his family’s lives better, and “APESHIT” brought The Carters’ relationship with fine art to new heights.

The Carters’ video begins with a Black angel, which is a holy figure that older European art lacks. Archangels like Gabriel (the entity responsible for telling the Virgin Mary her destiny) and Michael (a fierce fighter who expelled Lucifer from heaven in the Bible) are often shown as white men.

The inclusion of a Black angel reminds the world that Black people have always had their own ideas of God and spirituality.

Sadly, Black religions have been demonized and are often persecuted, as though white people cannot stomach religious interpretations that don’t focus on them and their accounts. Beyoncé and Jay-Z’s chosen imagery challenges this white-centric ideology.

“APESHIT” was shot in and outside of the historic Louvre, which was once a palace and is now the largest museum in the world. By choosing a location that is directly linked to royalty and international art, the power couple crowned themselves as the worldwide king and queen of popular music.

Their proclamation of Blackness — which is unfiltered and not subdued in any way throughout “APESHIT” — in an often inaccessible space like the Louvre is a statement in itself.

the carters

Black art curators like Kimberly Drew (also known as @museummammy) are working to create a culture where “more marginalized people enter institutions, learn the rules, and shatter and restructure them,” as she tells Brooklyn Magazine. These barriers in the art world relate to how art is sometimes taught (and created) solely from a white perspective.

I studied art the entirety of my time in public school, and I don’t remember learning about non-white artists and non-white artistic styles. We weren’t taught art history from a Black/POC point of view, and definitely didn’t get many chances to see Black faces as artists or the focus of art.

“APESHIT” helps destroy the notion that fine art and its consumption is for white people.

Black people have long contributed to art, even though people have gone out of their way to ignore that fact (some people would actually rather credit the construction of the pyramids to aliens). The Carters are making — as well as honoring — history (in a world class location like the Louvre, no less) by crafting art and showing it to be, at its core, for Black people.

As far as how the Louvre’s exhibits intersect with the individual shots in the music video, art scholar Heidi Herrera wrote an excellent breakdown of the various symbols on Twitter.

Vox writer Constance Grady pointed out another detail on Twitter, explaining that the portrait spotlighted at the end of “APESHIT” is “Portrait of a Black Woman (Negress)” by Marie-Guillemine Benoist, “one of the only pre-20th [century] portraits of a black person in the Louvre that’s not explicitly a portrait of a slave.”
“Portrait of a Black Woman (Negress)” by Marie-Guillemine Benoist.
There is this gross assumption that one of the only ways we can discuss Black people in art and history is by portraying slavery. Many Black people are tired of this characterization, and it is stimulating to see a Black woman represented as something other than a slave.
Perhaps one of the most stunning moments in “APESHIT” comes at the 2:14 mark. We see two Black women wearing durags and sitting back to back underneath “Portrait of Madame Récamier” by Jacques-Louis David.

The presence of durags in museums is not foreign considering that Solange wore one to the 2018 Met Gala. But this time we get to see the headpiece as a part of the art itself.


“APESHIT” is the ultimate “fuck you” to white supremacy. Beyoncé and Jay-Z are saying, “We made it, and we’re helping our people make it, too.” The video’s reference to police brutality (symbolized through the recreation of NFL players kneeling), Beyoncé’s decision to rap (a Black art form that is synonymous with rebellion), and the chance to turn the Louvre into a place to thrash make the video that much richer.

Black people have had to see their artistic backstory erased and reimagined by white people over and over again. But if the Carters have anything to do with it, that time is coming to an end. SALUD!


Source: Brooklyn White for Hello Giggles

4 mins read

How Artist Derrick Adams Learned About Freedom From ‘The Negro Motorist Green Book

On a recent wintry morning, the multimedia artist Derrick Adams was sitting in his cozy basement studio in Brooklyn talking about distant cities and faraway times. “It’s like reading a fairy tale book.

I see the names of beauty schools and men’s clubs and taverns, and I think, ‘What does that place look like?’”

Derrick Adams
Derrick Adams at his studio in Brooklyn with elements from his new show, “Sanctuary,” at the Museum of Arts and Design. Credit Andrew White for The New York Times

Mr. Adams was referring to the establishments listed in the “The Negro Motorist Green Book,” a series of AAA-like guides for black travelers published from 1936 through 1966, and the inspiration for “Derrick Adams: Sanctuary,” an immersive installation opening at the Museum of Arts and Design (known as MAD) on Jan. 25.

In his collages and immersive installations, Mr. Adams uses fabric and wallpaper to suggest roads and car doors. A steering wheel was made from a hat brim. Credit Terrence Jennings/The Museum of Arts and Design

Widely used at a time when African-Americans were navigating physical and social mobility through the swamp of Jim Crow laws and attitudes in the mid-20th century, the Green Books, as they came to be known, listed businesses from gas, food and lodging to nightclubs and haberdasheries that welcomed African-Americans when many did not.

A collage in progress in Mr. Adams’s studio melds a modernist grid with vintage-looking fabric in a brick pattern that elicits the old establishments, building facades and travel. “I’ve thought a lot about barriers, and accessibility, and obstacles, and perseverance,” the artist said. Credit Andrew White for The New York Times

While they reflect a disturbing reality of American history, the books also offered the hope of partaking in the American dream. “They enabled African-Americans to travel like Americans and to feel American,” the artist said.

“Beacon,” 2017, by Derrick Adams, suggests the welcome after a long day of driving. Credit Derrick Adams Studio

Recognized internationally for his kaleidoscopic explorations of the black experience, Mr. Adams, 47, who is African-American, is the first major visual artist to use the Green Books as a creative point of departure.

MIAMI, FL – DECEMBER 02: Derrick Adams attends Interview & Cadillac Celebrate Art of Daring at Maps Backlot on December 2, 2016 in Miami, Florida. (Photo by Jared Siskin/Patrick McMullan via Getty Images)

For him, they are not only a Civil Rights artifact and instrument of social change, but also a fascinating record of black leisure time and the built environment — subjects that are continuously percolating in his work.

Read the rest at the New York Times

11 mins read

Ancient Modern: Designer Hadiya Williams on Her Work and Inspiration

In 2018, we’re launching a new section: Aesthetics + Design. Our love of architecture, the arts and timeless design is married to our commitment to supporting the brilliant creatives that produce the work that adds value and beauty to our lives. Featuring architects, curators, artists, creators and makers, we’re excited to celebrate those most visually talented amongst us. Additionally, we’ll be sharing inspiration from homes and spaces that inspire.

For our inaugural feature, we sat down with Washington, D.C. based designer, Hadiya Williams, whose design has left in indelible mark on our lives, literally and figuratively. She was the mastermind behind our gorgeous wedding invitations for the #BlackestWeddingEver bka the ORIGINAL Jolloff and Jambalaya. (Believe it or not, some people actually stole our hashtag. Can you imagine?) But I digress.  She also recently completed a few larger scale projects in our Philadelphia home that was featured on HGTV’s Sneak Peek with AphroChic.

Check out what Hadiya had to say about her own personal aesthetic and process and look forward to more gorgeous inspiration to come.

Shantrelle P. Lewis

SB: Where are you from and how did you start working in design?

HW: I was born and raised in Washington, DC. I started designing while I was attending Bowie State University. I decided to take some computer graphics classes for an elective. I fell in love with the class and continued to teach myself how to use the design software. I eventually received by BFA in Graphic Design from Columbia College in Chicago.

SB: HBCU LOVE! And shout out to Columbia College. The Museum of Contemporary Photography(MoCP), on Columbia’s campus where Dandy Lion was on view in 2014, was one of the best things that ever happened to my career. Oh wait, you actually came to Chicago and saw the show there.

HW: I did! It was great to be back in the city. And of course, the exhibit was all of the things.

SB: Please describe what you do. How you self identify? As an artist? Designer? Creator?

HW: I would call myself all of the above. Depends on what I’m discussing or referring to. Ultimately, I am an artist. I know for a fact that what I do is art. I work intuitively most of the time. My work evokes emotion and very rooted in spirituality. Always has been.

SB: What inspired you to launch your 100 days of Black and white?

HW: I follow designer and book artist @eisroughdraft on IG. She shared a creative challenge, #The100DayProject with Elle Luna & The Great Discontent and I decided to do it. I was in a really tough space, creatively, at the time and thought the challenge would be a good way to help me focus and explore what I could do within that space. I had no idea how dramatic that release would be. I highly recommend a challenge like this where you do something for at least 21 days.

SB: What gave you gumption to start Black Pepper Paperie?

HW: #theblackestweddingever was the tipping point for me actually starting my business.  I did the invitation for this dope ass wedding which we all knew would be out of this world.

No one could have know just how amazing that experience would be. I came back from New Orleans in a completely different state of mind.

Before I left I was focused on working at my nonprofit gig and building up my position there. But I got back home and I knew I had to do work that I loved and that was exciting.

I began to plant the seeds for my stationery/event design business. Hence the “paperie” part of my name. I was pumped about that but there was still a part of it that I hadn’t figured out. I’m still learning and figuring out where this is going but it’s going definitely in the right direction.

SB: What are the most challenging and the most rewarding parts of owning your own business?

HW: The most challenging part about my business, so far is the learning. I have spent my career learning technical skills and design and being very focused with in the graphic design world.

Being an entrepreneur requires you to know so much more outside of art and design. That part is definitely challenging for me as a creative person. Like many artists, I just want to make shit.

The rewarding part, however, is the learning. Lol. Everyday I am faced with a new challenge. Creative and otherwise.

SB: Where do you pull inspiration? Who or what are your muses?

HW:  Black women. I am surrounded by an array of amazing, talented, dynamic women who guide me. They’re my muses. I’m also inspired by so many things around me. I have tons of design books, I go to vintage shops, thrift stores, outdoor markets, Pinterest.

I love West African art and design. It has always influenced my design thinking and the way I see.

SB: Tell me about your favorite personal/professional project?

HW: Ha! So, recently I painted designs on two walls in this home in Philly. Of course this is your home. That was something I hadn’t explored before and almost told myself that I wasn’t capable of. I consider it a favorite because it taught me that I have so much more work to do. And it reminded me that my work is spiritual.

I was inspired by the home itself and the history of the historically Black neighborhood, you and Tony’s roots in West African culture, and the open-minded spirit and boldness that you have.

Your curatorial work is bold and is all about taking risks. No one really thinks of home decor as risk-taking but it is the place where we are our most vulnerable and most comfortable. It says so much about who we are or at least it should. When people see our living space, if we are fortunate, it should tell them what we value most.

SB: Is there such a thing as a Black or African aesthetic?

HW: I think there is a thing that comes from Blackness that is innate, intuitive, not something that can be counted and measured. You know it when you see it and you actually feel the aesthetic, energetically.

I don’t think there is one specific aesthetic that is Black or African. I believe that we have a common aesthetic thread throughout the Diaspora.

The way we create music, dance, paint, and experience art in many forms, is connected. The evolved version of Black Americans is still connected to the Continent.

The same for the Caribbean. We all belong to each other. We consistently birth new art forms everyday. We are the cultural creators of the world.

SB: How would you describe your own personal aesthetic?

HW: Currently, my work is an amalgamation of West African cultural art, Black American cultural art and design, and early 20th century, western, abstract art and design that is essentially an appropriation or reinterpretation of West African art forms.

People who see my work tend to know or think they know it’s mine. So clearly I have an aesthetic, I have not found the words to describe it yet.

SB: What’s on your coffee table?

HW: A handmade vase from a fellow ceramics classmate, a book of matches, candle, my “genie bottle,” Dandy Lion by Shantrelle P. Lewis, Black Panther by Emory Douglas, Remix by AphroChic, The House Book, a Fire!! reprint, Black Society by Gerri Major, Taschen Publishing’s Logo Modernism.

SB: These days I’m becoming more and more selective about the kind of images I want to see in my social media fees. Who should we be following on IG? 

@BLKMKTVintage, @nicolecrowder, @justinablakeney, @andreapippins @ShoppeBlack, @nayyirahwaheed, @xnasozi, @tactilematter, @Afrominimalist @WalkieChatter, @ProfessionalBlackGirl and @Nachesnow. There are more but these are the first to come to mind.

SB: Lastly, what are tools that you can’t live without?

HW: My laptop.My cell phone (camera). #2 HB Pencils.

You can follow Hadiya on IG at @hadiyawilliams and @blackpepperpaperieco or visit to inquire about projects, to purchase items and for more information.

1 min read

Amy Sherald to paint Michelle Obama’s Official Portrait

Baltimore artist Amy Sherald, who graduated from the Maryland Institute College of Art in 2004 and just joined the faculty there, has been commissioned by the Smithsonian’s National Portrait Gallery to paint the official portrait of former first lady Michelle Obama.

New York-based Kehinde Wiley will paint the official portrait of President Barack Obama.

Kehinde Wiley

The paintings are scheduled to be unveiled next year and added to the National Portrait Gallery’s popular collection of presidential and first lady portraits.

Sherald’s portraits of African-American models are known for her use of gray skin tones.

Last year, she became the first African-American and first woman to win the National Portrait Gallery’s Outwin Boochever Portrait Competition; she was chosen for the $25,000 award from among 2,500 entrants.

Work by the Baltimore-based Sherald, 44, is in collections of the National Museum of Women in the Arts and the National Museum of African American History and Culture in Washington.

She will give a free talk at 5:30 p.m. Oct. 26 in Room 101 of the F. Ross Jones Building, Mattin Center, on the Homewood campus of Johns Hopkins University.


Source: The Baltimore Sun

5 mins read

Garden of Black Art goes Viral Online

When Columbus, GA artists Najee and Seteria Dorsey purchased a house six months ago, they wanted the yard to reflect their love for art.

While searching their belongings, they discovered some aluminum/ployethylene artwork that Najee created four years ago.

Dorsey, Najee (YARD ART-Bond Women Share)

The pieces — 28-inches tall and 11-14 inches wide — displayed Black women picking flowers wearing big summer hats.

Recognizing the potential for lawn art, the couple wondered if there was a market for that sort of thing.

On May 20, they took about a dozen pieces to an art show in Washington, and got the answer to that question.

“I sold every piece I had and took some additional orders,” said Najee. “And we were like, ‘Wow, it’s kind of blowing up.’ So we ramped up our production.”

Crossroad Blues

Once back in Columbus, Najee shot a video of the artwork by the fountain on Broadway. On June 1, he posted the video on Instagram and Facebook, and was shocked by the results.

“I was looking and next thing you know, I had 4,000 views, 5,000 views,” he said. “… The numbers continued to climb hour after hour and within three days we had eclipsed over 500,000 views.”

Big Mama

Now, the Dorseys are getting orders from all over the United States, many of them from Georgia, California, Texas, the Carolinas, Chicago, New York and New Jersey.

“What we found is that there are a lot of people that garden and take pride in their homes that didn’t have any representation of themselves that was available to them,” Najee said. “When you do a Google search for African-American lawn art, you get the old black jockey, you get an angel or two, and that’s about it. And so it’s like a ‘who knew?’ kind of thing.”

negro league player

The couple wanted to develop a brand, rather than just a product. So they adopted the name “Garden Art for the Soul” to reflect an ongoing narrative. Najee said each piece helps tell the story of black self-identity.

“It’s a Southern narrative probably closest to a Gullah Geechee or African-American-Sunday-after-church kind of thing,” he said. “These are images that most people can relate to in terms of African American culture.”


The couple started with three images. Najee said they’re now up to eight, and they will continue adding more to the catalog.

The Dorseys, founders of a Black Art in America website, moved to Columbus from Atlanta three years ago. Last year, they opened the local BAIA gallery at 1433 17 St.

In 2014, Najee’s multimedia artwork was featured in a Columbus Museum exhibit titled the “Leaving Mississippi — Reflections on Heroes and Folklore: Works by Najee Dorsey.”

The exhibit won Najee many local fans, including Aflac CEO Dan Amos and his wife, Kathelen, who later donated $100,000 to the Columbus Museum for a black art initiative. Aflac also purchased one of Najee’s pieces.

“Garden Art for the Soul” is just the couple’s latest endeavor.

“It was basically inspired by us recently buying a home and digging deeper roots here in Columbus,” said Najee, who lives with his wife on 18th Ave. “One of the things that we always wanted to do when we got our own space — after renting lofts and different condos in Atlanta — is to be able to curate and make it our own. Building a garden was one of the things that we were really interested in.

“And so, as a result of getting the house, spending a lot of time in the backyard, and getting our living space right, we saw a need to extend our love of art into yards,” he said.

Alva James-Johnson: 706-571-8521, @amjreporter
6 mins read

29 Black Owned Businesses in Philadelphia

I recently moved to Philadelphia and I must say, as someone who loves art and food, the City of Brotherly Love doesn’t disappoint. Apart from great restaurants and hole in the wall “hood spots”,  the city has a thriving art scene and an up and coming tech startup scene. Check out some of the many Black Owned Businesses that have got you covered if you live here, decide to visit or are doing some online shopping.

Black owned Businesses

Veronica Marché is a freelance illustrator who’s artwork features women of all ethnicities and celebrates the glamour of a multicultural world.


Warm Daddy’s is an atmospheric soul food establishment known for live blues and R&B sets plus a Sunday jazz brunch. – Owners: Robert and Benjamin Bynum


The African American Museum in Philadelphia presents the achievements and aspirations of African Americans from pre-colonial times to the current day. – CEO: Patricia Wilson


BlackStar Film Fest is a celebration of cinema focused on work by and about people of African descent. – Founder & Artistic Director: Maori Karmel


S&B Event Concepts and Catering is family owned and operated full service event planning and off-premise catering company. Owner: Sodiah Thomas


Duafe Holistic Hair Care‘s mission as an elite and holistic hair salon is to ensure that each client gets the best and most professional service available. – CEO: Syreeta Scott


Paris Bistro and Jazz Cafe is a snazzy neighborhood eatery with classic French bistro fare & a downstairs lounge with weekend jazz. – Owners: Robert and Benjamin Bynum


Maxamillion’s Gentlmen’s Quarter is a a networking destination where you can get a fresh cut and have great conversations with Philly’s movers & shakers. – Owner: Maxamillion A.J. Wells III


1617 Master Barbers and Stylists bring you the ultimate experience in OLD school professionalism with NEW school flavor. – Owner: Talib Abdul Mujib


Ton’Sure Grooming Studio offers the feel of a classic barber shop with a touch of modern day technology. – Owners: Kenny Tha Barber and Chink da barber

4df1ff27884803.5636c37880351Nile cafe is a laid-back, counter-serve eatery specializing in plentiful portions of vegan & vegetarian soul food and desserts. It gets my personal stamp of approval. – Co- Owners Aqkhira and Khetab Corinaldi


Amalgam Comics & Coffeehouse is a comic book store and coffee house for fans, hardcore gamers, movie addicts, television connoisseurs. – Founder: Ariell R. Johnson


Blue Sole Shoes is a shoe store specializing in fashion-forward footwear for men in styles from dress to casual. – Owner: Steve Jamison.


Little Delicious is neighborhood hole in the wall that serves hearty portions of Caribbean dishes. I give this one my personal stamp of approval also.


Koco Nail Salon & Wax Studio is a quaint boutique pampering destination that offers a quaint boutique pampering destination. – Owner: Onisha Claire


United Bank of Philadelphia is the only Black owned and managed community bank in Philadelphia –  President & CEO: Evelyn F. Smalls

Screen Shot 2016-05-22 at 11.42.38 PM

2B Groomed Studios offers stylish haircuts, facials, a wide variety of shaving options, beard coloring, bump extraction and complimentary shoe buffing with every service. – Owner: Jahmal Rhaney


Onehunted closes the gap between smart consumers and products that align with their values. Owner : Isaac Ewell

Philadelphia Print Works is a t-shirt company that encourages a culture of activism and inclusion. – Donte Neal, designer and Maryam Pugh, owner and co-founder.

black owned


Team Clean is a premier commercial janitorial service company, and is the largest woman and minority-owned company in the greater Philadelphia area. – Owner: Donna L. Allie, PhD.


Iron Lady Enterprises is a construction and concrete reinforcement contractor and supplier of construction materials. – Owner: Dianna Montague.



Kilimandjaro Restaurant – Senegalese fare served in casual, warm-hued quarters with African artwork & artifacts. – Owner: Youma Bah


Mellow Massage Therapy Center is home to a team of licensed wellness therapists who strive daily to bring restorative therapeutic treatments to their clients. – Owner: Gerrae Simons


Black and Nobel  – Independently owned store featuring books, DVDs, art & events related to African-American culture. – Owned by Hakim Hopkins


Color Book Gallery is the nation’s oldest multicultural children’s bookstore. It offers has retail operations, reading activities, seminars, educational displays and exhibits. – Owner: Deborah Gary


Natures Hair Food products are chemical free products that contain all natural ingredients that promote hair growth and restores the hair to a healthy, lustrous state. – Owner: Angela Tyler


B’ella Ballerina Dance Academy is a non-profit organization that offers a comprehensive dance curriculum to students ages three and up. Founded & directed by Roneisha Smith-Davis


Little Giant Creative works with local and national companies to develop custom brand strategies, design collateral, and awareness promotions. – Founder: Tayyib Smith


The Philadelphia Tribune, founded in 1884 by Christopher James Perry, Sr., is America’s oldest and the Greater Philadelphia region’s largest daily newspaper serving the African-American community. – President & CEO: Robert W. Bogle


Tony Oluwatoyin Lawson

1 min read

Black Owned Businesses in Paris You Should Know

We’re back at it with another guide to shopping Black in the Diaspora. This time, we’re highlighting Black owned businesses in Paris.  Let’s show some love to our brothers and sisters in the “City of Light”.

Black Owned Businesses in Paris

Café Dapper by Chef Loïc Dablé  is located a stone’s throw from Champs Elysées. The restaurant Café Dapper Loïc Dablé is set in Dapper Museum, a place dedicated to Sub-Saharan Africa, the Caribbean, and its diasporas. black owned businesses in paris


Natasha Baco

black owned businesses in paris

Sakina M’sa

black owned businesses in paris

Adama Paris

black owned businesses in paris


black owned businesses in paris


black owned businesses in parisHOME DECOR

Myriam Maxo tells a story through fabrics with abstract patterns and wax that provide a touch of fantasy with contemporary design.

black owned businesses in paris


Visiter L’Afrique or “Visiting Africa” ​​is an interactive digital platform dedicated to tourism and culture on the African continent.


Présence Africaine is a pan-African quarterly cultural, political, and literary magazine, founded by Seneglese-born Alioune Diop in 1947.

black owned businesses in paris



Alexis Peskine is a Parisian resident who is renowned for his work on race and identity issues in France.

black owned businesses in paris


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