The biggest entertainment story this past weekend was the worldwide release of Beyonce’s 6th studio album. The visual album has been long anticipated by her fans around the world. And in keeping with her notoriously secret approach to her work, not one clue was given as to what direction this project would take, thereby increasing the anticipation level.
One man who had an idea and contributed to the project is Nigeria’s Laolu Senbanjo. The Nigerian born, Brooklyn based singer and visual artist was tapped last December to work with arguably the biggest pop artist in the world. The information given to him was sparse, but he was told that Beyonce wanted to work with him. Days later Laolu met up with Beyonce and her team in New Orleans and after being briefed on what they wanted to achieve, he got to work putting his signature painting on her dancers.
Laolu has had a manic 2016 thus far. He had a very successful collaboration with sports wear maker, Nike, which saw him as one of the Masters of Air at the recently concluded AirMax CON. He featured in luxury fitness brand, Equinox’s “Committed” social media campaign. But it seems none of these compare to having the opportunity to share his Yoruba influenced work with the world while we all sway to the beautiful vocals of Queen Bey.
Laolu often says “everything is my canvas” and it seems like many other collaborators such as Nike and Equinox, Beyonce has become one of his canvas.
Laolu was born and raised in Ilorin, Nigeria to Yoruba Parents and is based in Brooklyn, NY. He’s a Visual Artist, Musician, Human Rights Lawyer and Activist. His motto is: “Everything is my Canvas” and takes it to heart. He puts his mark on everything from canvas, to shoes, to walls and buildings, to clothing and even the body with his Sacred Art of the Ori. There’s no separating Laolu from his Yoruba heritage, it is ever present in all his work. A strong advocate of holding onto your culture and spreading its glory he finds a way to marry his modern detail and ornate style with his Yoruba heritage by being one of the leaders in Afrofuturism Art. His preferred mediums are charcoal because it’s something as natural as life and death and he also likes to dabble in acrylics, inks and even wood.
You can see more of Laolu’s work on his Instagram account: @laolunyc