Friday, February 26, 2010

Amber Rose: Islandista swagger jacker?

Hip-hop's enfant terrible (which is saying a lot when you think about it) Kanye West launched a new, very minimalist photo blog yesterday.

And of course he had to give his arm-candy Amber Rose some shine. With this photo.

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Look familiar? Of course it does to you islandistas. It is a (weak) re-creation of islandista Grace Jones' iconic photo on the cover of her Island Life album, shot by her lover/collaborator Jean-Paul Goude.

[caption id="attachment_2112" align="aligncenter" width="405" caption="Photo credit: Jean-Paul Goude"][/caption]

Of course, as we have mentioned, this is not the first time Amber and her handlers have tried to re-create (I would have to say re-create rather than pay homage because there is no reference to Grace in any of the editorial for either of her attempts) iconic Grace Jones images.

And of course, there is a long-established tradition of obscuring the accomplishments and reputations of black women and black people in general by putting a white or light face on or above them.

And we have seen plenty comments thus far in the blogosphere about how hot the pic is and even some saying it is better than the original - that Amber Rose's pose is more "feminine"and "sexy" than Grace Jones.

We're just saying...

But what do you say? When does imitation cross the line from being the sincerest form of flattery to being a rip-off?

Our take on it?

Grace was the best to ever do it. *Kanye shrug*


  1. The Grace Jones pic is definitely a work of art, the arch of her back, lift of her shoulders and the direction of the slight bend in her arms were so beautifully executed- a sculptor's dream!
    Amber-Rose's version looks like a cheap pop-art imitation.

  2. The original pose is sexier I's Grace Jones people. There can be no comparison to anyone else. Nobody else even comes close.

  3. You know, as a black man who was never a big fan of Grace, (I understood and respected her - but was just never a huge fan) I have to thank you. As iconic an image as "Island Life" is and has been over the years, I never really fully appreciated it as the work of art it is until I saw how cheap Amber's version looks in comparison. I'm not here to be overly critical and I'm not dissing. Amber has a nice body. As I guy I can appreciate that as an image. Plus there are just too many differences - than mean too much on the surface and symbolically to mention in a short comment space. I just want to say thank you for comparing them side by side. I can see clearly now that Grace stands on a level all her own in her artistic statement, her physicality, her unique sexiness, and her creative courage.

  4. Amber's pose is no where close to being the same as Grace. Look at Grace's extension in her body and her body is toned WAAAYYY better.