Meet British-Nigerian Director Jenn Nkiru Who Influenced Jay Z And Beyonce’s ApeS**T Video
London, June 19, 2018 (AltAfrika)-Beyonce is not done with identifying with the Africans and their culture and won’t in a long time to come.
In 2016, Nigerians celebrated the body painting art of Laolu Senbanjo in her video Lemonade.
Her joint video Apesh**t with her husband from their surprise album Everything Is Love has given us another reason to be loyal to the Carter family.
While the director of the latest video remains Ricky Saiz who is responsible for Beyonce’s Yonce video, the second unit director of the single is a British-Nigerian Jenn Nkiru.
In an industry where women are beginning to gain recognition for their artsitry, she joins the likes of Ava Duvernay (Jay-Z’s Family Feud) and Melina Matsoukas (Beyonce’s Lemonade).
Photo courtesy of Jenn Nkiru/Protein Journal
Nkiru, a contemporary artist, identifies as a Nigerian filmmaker and is known for her style of telling stories that project the marginalised and the issues they struggle with.
In 2017, she showcased her short film at the Tate Modern Gallery International Women’s Day celebration. This distinctive work featured Guerrilla Girls and Zinzi Minott dances. That same year, she also worked with Bradford Young, an Oscar-nominated cinematographer for her short film En Vogue and has a series called the HASHTAG$.
More so, her 2017 short film, Rebirth Is Necessary won best documentary at the 2018 London Independent Festival.
Nkiru rose from a humble beginning. At the young age of 15, Nkiru worked as an assistant to Diane Martel, an established director.
She is also recognised for writing excellent music video stories. In this regard, she has written for Pharell, Major Laser, Imagine Dragons, Red Bull and J Cole
Beyond the above, Jenn Nkiru is an experimental director based in South London. Her work has shown at the Tate Modern, ICA, on Channel 4 and Nowness, and her growing list of collaborators include Bradford Young, Arthur Jafa and Chance the Rapper.
In a recent interview with Protein Journal, Nkiru refers to the Black experience as her constant. Committed to exploring the magic, spirituality and expansive potential of Blackness, Nkiru centres her work within her mantra, ‘Black universality’, which proposes that “a radical shift in focus to rarely seen aspects of Black life can lead to revolutionary ideas of empathy rendering Black lives and experiences universal”.
Nkiru’s first film En Vogue (2014), showcased the NYC Voguing and Ballroom scene through a uniquely divine light and was released on Channel 4 as part of Random Acts.
Her most recent work, Rebirth is Necessary (2017) premiered on Nowness in September 2017 as part of their ‘Black Star’ series dedicated to supporting new visions for Black culture.
For Nkiru, Black people are at the very moment of reawakening, and she considers herself and her work as a vessel in facilitating this process. “This is a moment of rebirth, and Black creatives have great work to do in imagining and actualising their futures”. Nkiru on the importance of knowing ourselves, starting from a revolution within, and on maintaining a spiritual connection
Additional report from Guardian Nig