BRONX, NY — In a hip-hop lesson, which delved deeper than the music, the Bronx Museum Community Advisory Council hosted a film screening of Jamel Shabazz Street Photographer on January 16. The Brooklyn-born legend captured the pioneers of music and street style. Before there was a Kanye or Jay-Z to influence fashion, style came purely from the streets. The film’s director Charlie Ahearn pays tribute to Shabazz with organic story-telling from the photographer himself, the fresh-dressed pioneers, hip-hop historian Fred “Fab 5 Freddy,” and other first-hand narrators.
I won’t say I’m a hip-hop connoisseur, because I am not. I grew up on hip-hop and I’m a Bronxite so the culture is pretty embedded in my makeup however there is a true science to hip hop. The film is more than just vintage shots of fresh kicks, cool kids and Puma. Street style is rooted in identity. It’s New York. It’s music. It’s a lifestyle. Each portrait documented in the film carry a story — often tragic ones.
After the movie, Ahearn sat for a Q&A session, where he and the audience discussed hip-hop’s international influence, women in hip hop, and more about Shabazz’s legacy. David Villorente (CHINO), who designed the poster art for Jamel Shabazz Street Photographer, was also in the building signing copies.
Photo Credit: The Bronx Museum of the Arts/Lauren Click