Today, my art question is a little different than in the past. This one is intended to make you think, I mean, really think.
Meek Mill is a Philadelphia born American rapper who recently made headlines for a thought provoking reason.
His new album, ‘Expensive Pain’ has angered some people.
Before I ask my question, take a look at his album cover.
This art is actually animated and has been put onto the sides of buses in Los Angeles.
People are outraged stating he is sexualizing black women.
Others think, as only an album cover, they weren’t concerned but because it is located on a public transportation bus, everyone, including young kids, are exposed.
What do you think? Is Meek Mill sexualizing black women? Is this art okay for public consumption or should we be limiting who is exposed?
The artist of the album cover is Nina Chanel Abney and is a black artist. Her ‘claim to fame’ is that she is willing to depict race, celebrity, religion, politics, and sex in her art.
As Nicki Minaj said, “I just want women to always feel in control. Because we’re capable, we’re so capable.”
If we want women to feel in control, shouldn’t women have a choice in how they are portrayed?
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So, I decided to look-up album covers to see why this specific one is such a problem.
I have a few thoughts, but they aren’t important.
What I did find is that ‘First Round Knockout’ has an album cover of a naked white woman with only boxing gloves that are barely covering her body.
‘Dirty Trix’ shows a close up of women’s breasts. Again…a white woman.
In fact, I found an entire article talking about album covers using ‘sex’ to sell.
As I scrolled through, many musicians I wasn’t familiar with, but I did notice something. 90% of the women on the covers were white.
So, another question I have about this issue is this: are people angry because naked women are exposed or is it because the women are black?
What do you think?
Would this be an issue if it weren’t Meek Mill but Demi Lovato instead? What if it were the infamous John Lennon and The Beatles who released this album cover?
Does that change the narrative? Tell us what you think.
Is this crossing lines? Is it okay as an album cover? Is the bus the issue? And what about race?
Does that play a role in people’s reactions?
This is an album cover I found by Lil Kim. One could argue it is explicit as well.
Unlike Meek Mill’s cover, this is a real person as opposed to something created and painted. Why is this okay?
I might be a bit confused at the hypocrisy and the things people get upset over. People are discriminated against daily.
We have millions of homeless citizens. Children are starving all over the world. But rather than focus on important stuff, we are crying about a piece of art that shows a naked black woman.
Her Blaze wants to know your thoughts. Art often pushes the limits.
Many artists use it to stir up controversy and make people think. Meek Mill and Nina Chanel Abney certainly did that with this piece.
Like it or not, it’s art. So, should people simply look away or do famous people have some responsibility in what they share?
Comment below with your thoughts!