Au Naturel

Inspired by the 1940s portraits of orator and abolitionist, Frederick Douglas, this series explores the structures and textures of black hair with historical context. Frederick Douglass, being the most photographed American of his time, took over 160 portraits, none in which he smiled. The stern look seen now in these modernized renditions, is used to make serious the realities and complexities of black hair culture. 

Ranging from Type 4A to 4C, these individuals showcase their natural hair's shape and form as representations of an entire community. Wearing only black and white, greyscale fashion elements become an example of their 'uniform' to acknowledge the people before them who were limited to this uniform of slavery. In summation, Au Naturel is a photographic compilation of men and women depicting modern imagery of black hair textures with pivotal historical context.

Using Format