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“Afrology” By James TOPS at Essex Street Gallery


“Afrology” debuted at Essex Street Gallery in New York this past Thursday the 21st. Although the space was small the special collection of new graffiti works by James TOPS spoke in volumes. We got a sneak peak of the compelling collection of “Afrology? debuting seventeen pieces of variations to the 1970’s hairstyle, the “Afro?. “It depicts controversial, nostalgic and historical messages of the African-American experience via mixed media and graffiti art”.

See more after the jump!

 

It was a combination of graffiti, photography by Joe Conzo from the 70’s and early 80’s in New York , and pictures of African Americans whom had a major impact in our society, From Michael Jordan, Oprah, to Martin L. King, just to name a few. Each piece of work had its own theme such as Hollywood , Change, Harlem Bronx, P.R. (Puerto Rico), Dealers, Brooklyn , Homeless and the list goes on.

Since James Top was running late I at least got the pleasure to meet Joe Conzo whom as mentioned before helped make some of these pieces complete with just a few of his many photos from the 70’s and 80’s, taken through different borough’s of NY, mainly the urban areas like the Bronx, N.Y. Joe Conzo also has a book out now, entitled “BORN IN THE BRONX? in which I got the pleasure to flip though with much intrigue, since I am from the Bronx. I was amazed to see pictures of my neighborhood basically destroyed. Back in the in the 80’s landlords of these apartment buildings would purposely have it catch on fire so the Black people and Latinos would have no choice, but to leave and as a result collect the insurance money… just one of many stories. On the brighter side Joe also took many pictures of the early days of Hip Hop in the Bronx. Rappers would invade the many, if not all, High Schools in the Bronx. Including the Boys and Girls Club on Hoe Ave. (Which it just so happens to be down the block from where I live) This brings me to JDL one of the members of the Cold Crush Brothers rap crew, and one out of many early Hip Hop legends in the Bronx whom also attended the “Afrology? Event. He even appears with his crew in the movie Wild Style.

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Xoxo
Candy J*

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One Response to ““Afrology” By James TOPS at Essex Street Gallery”

  1. Joe Conzo says:

    PROPS to Candy for the wonderful write up on my brother James TOPS new show! Its great to see today’s generation pay homage to the foundation and pioneers of The Hip Hop Culture. You go girl!!!

    1LOVE!

    Joe

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