Happy Valentine’s Day

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Nuit de Noel, 1965 by Malick Sidibe

“when was the last time you danced? | when was the last time you danced?
well come rock with me baby | dance with me darling
step with me sweetheart | the world is watching”  – – Gnarles Barkley, “The Last Time”

 {everyday the 14th}

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Mary Sibande – Sculptor, Photographer, Painter

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(l to r) – 1. I’m a Lady, digital print on cotton rag, 2009; 2. Admiration of the purple figure, digital pigment print, 2013; 3. The Reign, mix media installation, 2010; 4. They don’t make em like they used too, digital print on rag matte paper, 2008; 5. Her Majesty Queen Sophie, digital print, 2010; 6. I Have Not, I Have, digital print, 2010 (images by Gallery MOMO)

Mary Sibande and her alter ego, Sophie, are taking the art world by storm. Be it a digital print or a full installation of one of Sophie’s larger-than-life adventures –  one thing’s for certain – the imagery is always surreal, bold, and vibrant. With Sophie, Sibande gives homage to the domestic workers in her family while tackling the power struggles that exist within post-apartheid South Africa.

I would love to stand in the middle of Sibande’s installation and let Sophie’s dream world whisk me away…I’m sure that experience would be life changing!

Chester Higgins Jr. – Photographer

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(l to r) 1. Door of No Return, Senegal, 1972; 2. Moslem Woman, New York City, 1990; 3. Amiri Baraka & Maya Angelou Dance; 4. Senegal, 1975; 5. Candomble Priestess, Brazil

Anyone who knows me knows I adore books, especially books about art. Last year, Half Price Books held a wonderful warehouse clearance where I picked up a real gem. It was a book called, Feeling The Spirit: Searching the World for the People of Africa, by Chester Higgins Jr. Imagine my giddiness when I went home and realized this book contained page after page of exquisite photography.

Higgins’ work is a gorgeous oxymoron in that it possesses coolness and warmth. Each image exudes a peace that not only attest to the beauty of the subject but also to the magic of the artist. He is easily one of my all time favorite photographers, right up there with Roy DeCarava. For over 38 years, Higgins captured the beauty, love, and spiritual essence of the African Diaspora for The New York Times. Earlier this month, he announced his retirement from the paper, leaving behind hundreds of photos and an invaluable legacy.

For more information about the man and his art, check out his website, http://www.chesterhiggins.com/.