Ekow Eshun on Made You Look: Dandyism and Black Masculinity

The exhibition Made You Look: Dandyism and Black Masculinity explores dandyism as radical personal politics, a willed flamboyance that flies in the face of conventional constructions of the black masculine. It proposes that the black ‘dandy’, with his extravagant emphasis on dress foregrounds a hyper-visible identity which counters the heighted vulnerability, the result of a charged history of objectification. In the context of this exhibition, dandyism isn’t simply about sharp dressing but rather, consciously problematising ideas of male identity through dress or deportment that is arresting, provocative, louche, camp and gloriously assertive.

The exhibition runs at The Photographers’ Gallery through 25 September 2016.

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