When analysing tropes and themes covered by Beyonce‘s immersive videography, there is one motif which takes centre stage in almost all of her art.
The past…and its presence in present.Array
Examples? ‘Naughty Girl’ (see 1953’s ‘The Band Wagon’), ‘Formation‘ and its wink at the Reconstruction era, ‘Why Don’t You Love Me’ (set in the 1950s) and ‘Flawless‘ (see Punk subculture of the 1980s).
What isn’t as obvious, is the artist’s exploration of the future via magical realism, science fiction..and Afro-futurism.
Afrofuturism addresses themes and concerns of the African diaspora through technoculture and science fiction, encompassing a range of media and artists with a shared interest in envisioning black futures that stem from Afrodiasporic experiences.
Meet us for a look into the other-wordly worlds of Beyonce below…
In Pop culture, Afrofuturistic concepts are employed by black musicians to pull them out of the ordinary and into the extraordinary to offer black audiences a comforting vision of ourselves in worlds where our hopes, dreams and fantasies are fully realised.
Worlds, much kinder than our own.
For Beyonce, the aesthetic also serves as a tool to showcase her surreal vision of love in scenarios where she enjoys symbiotic relationships with nature (usually water) electricity and technologically advanced versions of herself.
Hit the play button on the videos below for more.
Afrofuturism takes representations of the lived realities of black people in the past and present, and reexamines the narratives to attempt to build new truths outside of the dominant cultural narrative.
I appreciate both the storytelling of Black folks’ violent realities as well as Black Afrofuturism.
Reasons I can make space for the storytelling of street rappers and the afrofuturism of Beyonce and Janelle Monae
— PhDapper (@dnzlcaldwell) May 7, 2018