Always an intricate art form, artist Shani Crowe is celebrating the artistry behind the protective hairstyle of braids.


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Chicago native Crowe’s new exhibit “BRAIDS” honors Black traditional hairstyling. Currently [July 2016] being shown at the Museum of Contemporary African Diasporan Arts (MoCADA) in Brooklyn through November 6, the photographer utilized the skill passed down through older generations to create a deeper understanding of a portion of the Black experience as a woman. Highlighting the positives amongst the negatives, Crowe believes, “By referencing an intergenerational collective memory, seated in the crest of the Black feminine experience, I create an instance of privilege.”

Speaking on the preservation of Black culture and storytelling, Crowe states, “I think it’s important to preserve Black hairstyles because Black people, especially, should be charged with preserving their own history because when it’s in the hands of other people sometimes it’s not necessarily accurate. And also, it gives you something to be proud of when you take the time to study where you come from and really celebrate the qualities that you have.”

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Check out some of Shani Crowe’s work from her exhibit”BRAIDS” below.