Laolu Senbanjo is a brooklyn-based Nigerian body artist who has done so many works that speak for themselves. He painted fBeyoncé for her album, Lemonade. His latest work is with the American tennis super star, Serena Williams, on the cover of the September issue of Essence.
In the magazine’s cover, the tennis player rocks the daring body art of the Nigerian visual artist in a way that gives her a daring look.
Williams is the star of Essence’s September issue, also known as its Global Fashion Issue, which “takes audiences on a world tour of Black creatives from fashion and art to culture and business,” according to a release touting that next month’s issue is “featuring designers from Lagos to New York City.”
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Working with one of the greatest athletes of all time was truly an honor. It is still surreal when I think that @serenawilliams was my canvas. I captured her essence and greatness with this unique print. Every element in the Artwork is a reflection of who she is. Growing up in Nigeria, it was far reaching to think that I could ever work with such an amazing person; one of my sheros. For those who think their dreams are unreachable I hope this serves as validation that they’re not. Thank you @essence for the opportunity. 🙏🏾❤️#sacredartoftheori #september #issue
Exemplifying our inextricable link to Africa, Williams’ face is half-painted by famed Nigerian-born, Brooklyn-based artist Laolu Senbanjo and captured by photographer Kwaku Alston for the September cover and feature story, titled “The Future of Serena Williams.”