Written by Sonya Harris
You are valuable.
You are intricate.
You are beautiful.
But we must credit this revelation of our uniqueness to being surrounded by equally valuable and diverse individuals.
Without variation, most would agree life would be a bit stoic and dull. The earth is a beautiful template which inspires artists to create beautiful garments or works of art. Living on such a vast and colorful planet like earth should inspire us to utilize its recipe in terms of determining an accurate representation of beauty. Instead, most media and companies conform to a monotonous plane of sameness in what they promote as beautiful. Gaia, must be face-palming right now.
We at Afrobeatnik believe that a harmoniously diverse world is a more united one. We resist the safety net found in a tedious lack of variety and conformity. We see and crave color and variation…things that mimic nature.
We've noticed a trend by observing the comments on different forums, blogs, videos etc. on the topic of diversity. Racial minorities and people of all ages and sizes are growing increasingly weary of the shortage of diversity in the shows they watch, the Tumblr photos they scroll through, or the posters of models in mall window panes they pass.
We worry that the widespread cultural understanding or the concept of diversity will eventually look like the infamous Diversity Training episode of The Office-- solely stereotype-based and indifferent. This type of system is both mentally and physically exhausting. How do you keep track of all the stereotypes? Exactly what shade must skin be to avoid things?
People need solace. A safe haven of sorts. Afrobeatnik, which is composed of as many diverse as there are dynamic and passionate individuals, hopes to bring some solace to those who have been thirsting for truth and recognition.
By utilizing clothing from multiple cultures and various time periods and working to create a film projects with a focus on women and telling stories of often unheard life experiences, we hope to highlight important and diverse aspects of humanity. We work in creative and collaborative environments where all are welcome and no one's life experiences are irrelevant.
We are stronger and shine more vividly because of our diversity. Our differences don’t isolate us, but help unify us in our appreciation of life. Playing it ‘safe’ and utilizing only one type of person, be it by shape, size, color, age, or sexual orientation, does not contribute anything of substance to humanity. Our clothing, staff, models, and film projects challenge what currently is. We're searching for beauty beyond the status quo.