Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Portrait: Grace Jones Wired

International model and disco queen Grace Jones has just won the award for most promising disco artist of 1977. Her fisrt two disco releases: That's the Trouble and I Need a Man-have soared to the top of the charts. Her first album is called Jones-Portfolio. 9/9/1977. Image: Bettmann Collection/Corbis


Grace Jones on the set of the James Bond 007 film "A View To Kill" by John Glen, October 1, 1984. Image: Nancy Moran



Grace Jones in Provocative outfit. Date: January 1977. Image: Bettmann



Grace Jones performs in New York City in 1977 taken by legendary rock and roll photographer Chuck Pulin

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Kenya: 2010 FAFA Fashion Show


Models put on dresses backstage before the fashion show organized by FAFA (Festival for African Fashion and Arts) at Nairobi National Park in Nairobi, Kenya, 30 October 2010. FAFA was set up in Kenya in 2008 during the post-election violence which killed more than 1,000, in order to change perceptions of other communities by exploring and bridging cultures through fashion, art and music. EPA/DAI KUROKAWA



A model takes to the catwalk wearing a creation of a fashio brand Deepa Dosaja by Kenyan designer Deepa Dosaja during the fashion show organized by FAFA (Festival for African Fashion and Arts) at Nairobi National Park in Nairobi, Kenya, 30 October 2010. Image: EPA/Dai Kurokawa



A model takes to the catwalk wearing a creation of a fashio brand Deepa Dosaja by Kenyan designer Deepa Dosaja during the fashion show organized by FAFA (Festival for African Fashion and Arts) at Nairobi National Park in Nairobi, Kenya, 30 October 2010. Image: EPA/Dai Kurokawa.



A model takes to the catwalk wearing a creation of a fashio brand Kiko Romeo by Scottish designer Ann McCreath during the fashion show organized by FAFA (Festival for African Fashion and Arts) at Nairobi National Park in Nairobi, Kenya, 30 October 2010. Image: Dai Kurokawa.



Model takes to the catwalk wearing a creation of a fashion brand Nkwo by Nigerian designer Onwuka during the fashion show organized by FAFA (Festival for African Fashion and Arts) at Nairobi National Park in Nairobi, Kenya, 30 October 2010



A model takes to the catwalk wearing a creation of a fashion brand Nkwo by Nigerian designer Onwuka during the fashion show organized by FAFA (Festival for African Fashion and Arts) at Nairobi National Park in Nairobi, Kenya, 30 October 2010 Image:EPA/Dai Kubokawa



A model takes to the catwalk wearing a creation by Kenyan designer Nike Kondakis during the fashion show organized by FAFA (Festival for African Fashion and Arts) at Nairobi National Park in Nairobi, Kenya, 30 October 2010. Image: EPA/Dai Kurokawa

Friday, December 17, 2010

Hoha! (Pointblank): Show People

"It feels really good to get the OBE but I dropped it on the floor. So that was a bit embarrassing. I'm just glad I didn't trip over."..."I feel really, really privileged to be here, especially as there are so many people who have done amazing things here. My Winnie Mandela part was my favourite ever I think. A character like her is such an iconic character and she has all the ingredients; you get the chance to play the whole gamut of emotions."

-------Actress and Academy Award nominee, Sophie Okonedo on dropping the OBE Medal on the feet of Prince Charles of Wales during the award ceremony.


"The Department of Justice and the Securities and Exchange Commission investigated that joint venture extensively and found no suggestion of any impropriety by Dick Cheney in his role of CEO of Halliburton."... "U.S. regulators collected $1.28 billion in penalties and criminal fines in the Bonny Island case after settling charges of violating the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, a 1977 law that bans the bribery of foreign officials to obtain business."

-------The Wall Street Journal reports on "Nigeria drops bribery charges against Cheney, Haliburton.
Cheney's cartoon by Cox & Forkum


“I have travelled far and wide, but I'm proud to tell you that no country can match our rich culture in Nigeria. The natural resources like good locations are already there for us, so it is left to maximise the privilege,”...“I can't shoot a low budget film because it will underrate my status. I learnt that some people shoot for as low as N300,000 or there about in Nigeria, but I can tell you that such film cannot go anywhere internationally. The international market is my target, so I have to put things in the right perspectives to achieve that conveniently. All I want now is good indigenous script.”...

-------Nollywood filmmaker Ademola Olanibi on why he 'can't shoot a low budget film.'

Memorable Images and Time


23 Oct 1962, San Francisco, California, USA --- 10/23/1962-San Francisco, CaliforniaNew middleweight champion Dick Tiger is hoisted on the shoulders of his Nigerian countrymen after he won a 15-round title bout against former champ Gene Fullmer at Candlestick Park. --- Image by Bettmann/CORBIS



05 Oct 1954, Mackinac Island, Michigan, USA --- George Daneel, prominent South African and Springbok rugby player, is shown chatting with Adolphus Mbah (left) and Chief Yakubu Tali at the Moral Rearmament Assembly on Mackinac Island. Mbah is vice president of the Nigerian Federation of Trade Unions. Chief Tali is a member of the Gold Coast Parliament and president of the Northern Territories Council. At an interracial meeting in Capetown Daneel recently made a public apology for his attitude of superiority towards the other races in Africa. Segregation is rigidly enforced in South Africa. --- Image by Bettmann/CORBIS




14 Jun 1962 --- Nigerian parliamentarians pose for a photograph while on a visit with President John F. Kennedy



12/10/1974-Washington, D.C.- World heavyweight champion Muhammad Ali and his brother Herbert Clay (L) meet with President Ford at the White House. Ali said he liked the White House, and just might go after the job. Ford said there were times he'd be happy to let him have it.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Thursday, December 02, 2010

Images: Nigerian Jungle Blues

This one here beats me...Getting high on his own supply


10 Dec 2008, LAGOS, Nigeria --- A child washes clothes in Iwaya, one of the poorest areas of Lagos --- Image by Friday Zannu/Handout/Reuters


01 Feb 1999, Finima, Nigeria --- Flooding in the Niger Delta --- Image by George Steinmetz


2005, Lagos, Nigeria --- Cars Passing Checkpoint in Nigeria --- Image by James Marshall


28 Jul 2004, Afiesere town, Delta, Nigeria --- Urohobos Bake Tapioca in the Heat of a Shell Gas Flare Site --- Image by Ed Kashi/Corbis Images

Classic: Elegantly Dressed Models

New York's newest fashion face, model Iman, a 20 year old, 5-10, regally striking Somali tribeswoman, launches her modeling career at a press conference in Manhattan, New York. She was discovered by photographer-adventurer Peter Beard. She's wearing a sari-like sheath of brightly patterned chiffon with her black hair coifed high off her forehead and the ivory tusks of a wart hog joined with silver around her neck. Date: October 22, 1975. Image: Harry Leder.




Model Grace Jones, also known for her acting and singing career, is wearing a clingy pink dress with an attached hood for the Tunisian designer Azzedline Alaia Women's 1986 Spring-Summer Haute Couture line in Paris October 30, 1985. Image: Pierre Vauthey




Model Beverly Johnson wearing a cotton knit cardigan, matching button-front tank top and a dark pleated wool skirt by Bill Bass with a soft-brimmed hat by Don Marshall and flat envelope by I. Miller. Date: February 1974. Location: New York. Image: Francesco Scavullo






 Tyra Banks modeling a halequinn patterned blazer with leather pants and hat in the Perry Ellis, by Marc Jacobs April 7, 1992. Image: George Chinsee/Conde Nast

Ikoli Harcourt-Whyte 1905-1977


BY ED KEAZOR

Ikoli Harcourt-Whyte was born in 1905 in Abonnema in the Niger delta of Nigeria to a family of the Kalabari tribe. His parents- Munabo and Odibo named him Ikoli, however he adopted the name Harcourt-Whyte later on in his life. He was trained by his parents in the vocations of the Kalabari people, fishing and trade and also was schooled in the traditional vocal traditions of the Kalabari.

He was disagnosed with Leprosy in 1919, at the age of 14 and was sent first to the Port Harcourt Hospital- the closest hospital to Abonnema- by his siblings and then to the Uzuakoli Leprosy Hospital in the East of Nigeria. In keeping with the practice at the time, he and other patients were kept in virtual seclusion since Albert Schweitzer's vaccine had not been developed by then. Its also important to point out that his beloved mother and father died in 1916 and 1919 respectively thus making him both an orphan and a victim of one of the most dreaded diseases of the time at a very young age.Substantial background about Harcourt-Whytes affliction with Leprosy is provided by the research of Hazel Mae Rotimi (wife of Ola Rotimi) and Achinivu Achinivu who wrote a PhD dissertation at the University of Berlin on the life and works of Harcourt Whyte- the symptoms of the disease were first noticed in 1918, and the symptoms aggravated very quickly until its full blown manifestation in 1919. Especially noteworthy was that In ancient lore, leprosy was considered a curse from the Gods and Lepers were banished, resulting in most committing suicide.

Harcourt-Whyte however sought a deeper meaning for his fate and conviction that his life had a greater purpose than his affliction and the attended stigma represented to him.

Whilst at the Leprosy hospital, he immersed himself in Biblical text and in particular developed a strong interest in the religious hymns sung in the Hospital chapel and was encouraged to join the choir by the English Missionaries who ran the hospital and soon became an important part of the choir, subsequently becoming its conductor. He was encouraged by the missionaries also to compose choral pieces in Igbo, which though not his native language was the language of expression at Uzuakoli of which he mastered.

Harcourt-Whyte wote over 200 choral pieces in his career, an incredible feat for a man with virtually no formal education. In 1949, upon Schweitzer's vaccine gaining widespread use, he was cured of Leprosy, upon which he dedicated the rest of his life to composing inspirational music and educating on the need for care of Leprosy patients.

His music incidentally became a source of comfort for Igbos during the Nigerian Civil war, especially the track Atulegwu. three of the most popular recordings of his work were namely two albums by the Choir of the Uzuakoli Leper Colony (comprising Leprosy patients) and conducted by the legendary Musicologist and poet- Nnamdi Olebara, whose haunting and powerful poetry and narrative make these two of the most important classical works ever recorded in Nigeria. The third being the album "A e na o" by the St Louis Missouri African Choir, the only readily available recorded version of his work. By the way the Choir was composed entirely of Americans.

Harcourt-Whyte died in 1977 in a motor accident, however his compositions gained huge global critical acclaim after his death and whilst not on the same scale as his contemporary Fela Sowande, however his work is immprtalised in the published research by Hazel Mae Rotimi (subsequent to a 23-year research), Achinivu Achinivu's work and Ola Rotimi's great play "Hopes of the living dead" which featured the music of Harcourt-Whyte.

At some of my most challenging times- especially when undergoing Chemotherapy last year, the music of Harcourt-Whyte was inspirational to me - especially the song "Atulegwu" (never fear), also his composition "Umu gi emebiwo uwa gi" (Oh God, your children have destroyed the beautiful world that you created..) is one of the most moving songs I have ever heard and has resonance with several themes of the beauty of this earth destroyed by man's greed, avarice, covetousness and individualism. It is important also that Harcourt-Whyte's ministration never included condemnation of other faiths but focused on the simple philosophy love, compassion and empathy for your fellow men. A smiple man, he never sought acclaim, money or fame, he believed his life had a purpose beyond the challenges he faced or merely acquiring material achievement. One of the greatest African's who ever lived, if you asked me.