Olivia Fraser & GUAP Magazine come together to create an ode to dancehall culture and the Queens that have contributed to it.
Caribbean and dancehall culture has undoubtedly been a huge influence on fashion, music, and culture in the 21st century. In August, communities all over the world gather under the sun (or under the rain in England’s case) to take part in festivals, carnivals, and events that are led by the dancehall communities and the people within them. In these communities, there is a figure that is the rhythm, heart, and soul of its existence. The Dancehall Queen.
“Women fill so many spaces in dancehall culture.” Creative director; Olivia Fraser tells GUAP. “Over the years black women have established their place in the very male-dominated dancehall scene. They’ve used the dancehall scene to not only showcase their skills, personality, and looks but also to create a space of empowerment.”
In response to the disappointment of dancehall events being canceled due to Covid in 2020 and early 2021. Creative director and producer; Olivia Fraser collaborated with GUAP to create An Ode to Dancehall Queens. The editorial celebrates the dancehall queens who have contributed to the culture since its inception. As well as shining a light on emerging dancehall talent such as Kareema Lewis, Naomi Minott and Angel Baker.
Fraser continues to say, “In Jamaican culture all shapes and sizes are welcome. Whether you’re fluffy or slimmaz, all are embraced, so you can only imagine what that does for a woman’s self-confidence. It’s not about perfection, it’s about self-belief and self-love”.
Shot in a traditional British-Jamaican home, the talent was instantly reminiscent as they walked onto our set for the day. With the details of plastic-covered furnishing and untouched china plates in the cabinet, everyone on set who was of Jamaican/Caribbean heritage was instantly transported to the memory of being back home. In the editorial, we see our Queens in each area of the home, preparing for a dancehall event. The music is playing, the drinks are pouring and their hips are swaying as they warm up their dance moves for the night ahead.
“In its in perfectly imperfect state dancehall stands alone as a culture that influenced the world. ”Olivia Fraser
GUAP and Olivia Fraser hope that through this editorial, we shed a light on the relevancy of dancehall culture and how the Queens that make a huge part of it are celebrated. The impact of dancehall is ever-present in music, fashion, and cultural trends. An Ode To Dancehall Queens beautifully encapsulates the women who have made this movement the cornerstone of the culture that it is today.
Take a look at the full video editorial on youtube and support the team who made it all possible.
Featuring: Kareema Lewis @kareemalewis , Naomi Minott @_naomimt , Angel Baker @angeltheartiste
Creative Director/Producer: Olivia Fraser @missfraser_x
Music by Ras Kassa @prgrshn
Director/Video Editor: Jolade Olusanya @joladeo
Director of Photography/ Colourist: Charles Rare @charlesrare_
Arts & Culture Editor/ Producer: Chelsea Mtada @chelseamtada
Fashion Editor/ Photographer: Terna Jogo @shooter_terns
Stylist: Ashleigh Stunna: @ashleighstunna
Stylist Assistant: Monique Yates @msmny
Hairstylist for Naomi & Angel: Michelle Anjou Okuneye @rf.london
Hairstylist for Kareema: Schelah Luvieki @thelondonbeat
Make-Up Artist: Sofia Paradis: @sofiaparadis
Location: Scarlett Carter @xscarleex
Kareema wears: Dress by @selinaknitts , necklace @bbsmithh, earrings @aurum ldn
Naomi wears: lace jumpsuit @babekartel , bralet @ciwen , earrings and rings @aurumldn
Angel wears: Dress by @ima.tm , Boots by @officeshoes , Earrings @aurumld , Rings @reyahlewis , Glasses @giantvintage