Friday, July 20, 2012

Purposeful Design

What is most beautiful about art, is how it usually is an expression of where the artist has been, where they come from, what they've encountered, and what they see.  Whether it be a standpoint from experience, a tribute to one's culture, or just an interpretation of what's important to the artist.  The medium in which one chooses to use in art is usually determined by what they were able to get their hands on the moment the creative spark began.  Be it fabric, gold, clay, crap leather, spray paint  or an upside-down bucket, the true beauty of art is what one can express animately, with something totally inanimate.

A lover of beauty and creativity, my radar is known to land me in places where this is most excellently displayed.  July 18, 2012, I had the pleasure of attending such a display presented by the Fashion Center Space for Public Art ( in NYC's famed Fashion District.  An amazing window display showcased the jewelry design talent of Fatima Samad, an American born Ghanian based in New York.  Inspired by her family's culture, she began adorning herself with unusual garments and pieces, which drew a demand from onlookers.  Fatima "combines natural, artistic environments of the East and West, old and new, contemporary, and traditional rustic" elements to construct her "wearable art"(  Elegantly displayed on female silhouettes created by Art Director, Tommy Montanez, Fatima's work was given a platform of high fashion and quality taste in the beauteous window display.  The combination of jewelry and sculpture was a beacon in the midst of the terrible NYC storm that occurred.  Supporters came out in large numbers, the elements did not stop our hunger for artistic exchange.  Lending his genius to the project as Creative Director was Tori Famuyiwa  owner and creator of Toriola (  His fusion couture designs have been featured in Bloomingdales and Essence Magazine.  Both Tori and Fatima participated in Africa Fashion Week New York 2011.

  All those present got a chance to hear the inspiration, and see the vision firsthand.  With or without their respective titles, Fatima, Tori, and Tommy inspired my own art within.  That is what makes me want to be around it, to experience someones else's process is such a high form of living.  All of this, and we were still serenaded by Austrian-born, classically trained violinist Queen Rose. We bopped our heads to Biggie, Tupac, and Beyonce while she fervently combined her classics in true legato fashion.     Ya Indieground House Management (,  the sponsors for the event, did a phenomenal job bringing all of us together to experience this moment.  I've witnessed their un-canny knack for finding and sharing with the world one-of-a -kind creative treasures, this evening was no exception.

I'm not one for flattery, honestly.  If I like something, I like something, if I don't, well...  Fatima Samad's jewelry is breathtaking.  Seriously.  I particularly appreciate the brightly colored leather chosen for some of her earrings.  I instantly saw myself wearing them, casually, date-night, and even for a formal event.  Her work makes you want to be a canvas.  What is translated is that each piece was done on purpose, that the designs intentionally jar an image of where Fatima and her family hold their ties.  We walked away with a sense of what is important to her, what will be important to you when wear her art.  Purposefully designed, this was an evening of a true merge of beauty.
Fatima Samad, Tommy Montanez, Tori Famuyiwa

Queen Rose, Fatima Samad

Oscar Pesantes

Myron Johnson, Ya Indieground House, Roy Paul


Fuzion Magazine interviewing Tori Famuyiwa

Tifini Lewis, Fatima Samad

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