Photography

Breathtaking Portraits Pays Tribute To First Black Woman Millionaire With Decades of Black Hair Trends

Tribute To Madam C.J. Walker

Regis and Kahran Bethencourt of CreativeSoul Photography use their skills as artists and photographers to make people happy and celebrate their unique looks. A large number of the most memorable images are depictions of young Black women. In one of their most recent shows, the couple pays homage to Madam C.J. Walker, who was the “first black woman millionaire in the United States.”

Insight On Walker’s Life

Walker was born in 1867 to parents who were slaves. She made her own line of cosmetics and hair care products for Black women. As a business owner, she sold her products directly to them. She then hired “beauty culturalists” to sell her hair care products. She used her money for good and gave scholarships to women at the Tuskegee Institute and to groups like the NAACP.

Another part of her legacy is the Madam Walker Theater Center in Indianapolis, Indiana, which was once the headquarters of her business. This is what the center says: “We use our historic building as a venue for celebrating cultural diversity, rich heritage, and cultural traditions,” the center explains, “primarily through art from the African-American perspective.”

Evolution Of Black Hair Trends

When the Bethencourts were asked to work with the Madam Walker Theater Center, they chose to focus on how she changed Black hair care. Kendall Xenia Lowe and Keondra Renee, a hair and makeup artist, worked together to make portraits of Black hair trends. There are a lot of photos that start in 1890 and go through each decade until the 2000s. They show how things have changed over time. It comes to a close with a final style that sets the scene for the future.

Icon Still Lives In Our Hearts

“We can’t help but think that if she were still alive,” she would be so proud of how she started an era of Black women becoming more empowered and believing that they could achieve wealth and economic prosperity, Bethencourts mentions.

Take a look at the individual portraits below, then watch an Instagram reel to see them all in one place at the same time in a time-lapse video.

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