by Kamara Hakeem-Oyawoye
Rihanna’s most recent addition to her empire is The Cameo jewelry launch. Deeply rooted in African history via carved tokens of monarchs, cameo jewelry in itself is an ode to Black people.
Featuring three pieces: earrings, a ring and a pendant (that doubles as a brooch, depending on how you feel). The mogul is showing no signs of slowing down after being nominated for the 2019 British Fashion Awards.
While we stan Queen Fenty and her range in black and white variations encased with Swarvoskis or pearls. The most exciting part is the symbolism behind the jewelry.
The cameos were created to immortalize the beauty of Black women, which is evident by the portrayal of a woman’s profile. In a press release, Fenty explained that “the collection is not about a singular definition of beauty; she symbolizes the beauty of difference”.
In Ancient Greece, young women wore cameos of Eros, to symbolize love and Medusa to ward off demons. But Fenty declared that the hand-sculpted “cameo is an emblem of fearlessness, elevation, creativity, and joy – everything FENTY stands for”.
To further illustrate this message, Nigerian photographer Ruth Ossai and hairstylist, Issac Poleon created sculptural hairstyles to “highlight the endless artistic possibilities of afro-hair culture in sculpture”.
In an industry that has long been avoidant of the significance that Black culture plays in trends, Rihanna is making sure to close that gap. By taking Black women from the mood boards to storefronts, she’s constantly creating a narrative that can no longer be ignored.