THE WOMEN OF AFROFUTURIST SOUND by Kareem Reid (westindians)
These women are just a few examples of pioneers in contemporary art and culture that offer unique perspectives on the multi-narratives and realities of black femininity. They often re-appropriate and challenge mainstream representations of black female bodies, sexuality and desire. Emphasis is placed on the inherently fluid nature of their identities and often present themselves as aliens or androids to communicate their “otherness”, a common thematic trend among Afrofuturist artists.
Betty Davis and Grace Jones in the 70s and 80s preceded the huge commercial success of many acts of the 90s; particularly girl group TLC, Janet Jackson, Missy Elliott and cult favourites Aaliyah and Kelis played key roles in bringing Afrofuturist aesthetics to the forefront of popular culture.
The rise of emerging artists Janelle Monae,THEESatisfaction, Solange, Kelela and Moko are encouraging signs of a new wave of enigmatic performance artists charged with the double-objective of making us dance as well as think.