From the housing projects of the Bronx to the runways of the biggest fashion brands, by way of the world’s emblem of high culture, the Louvre, rap, now 50, has come a long way. The exhibition Get Rich or Die Tryin’ aims to tell the story of a culture created by the most disenfranchised people, starved for role models of success, who, through hip hop, found an avenue for expression, identity, creation and, finally, wealth and acceptance.
Today, rap is mainstream and is created all around the world, to suit local flavors, but it still retains the unkept promise of a lightning-fast social ascent, accompanied by all the symbols that go along with it. Photography is very well suited to document this. Therefore, the exhibition highlights the work of some of the most respected artists who have focused on hip hop but also the lesser-known photographers who followed the birth of this movement and crystalized its iconography, who worked for legendary publications like Vibe and shot some of the most recognizable album covers ever produced.
The exhibition has been shown at Cortona On The Move Festival. The exhibition is curated by Lars Lindemann and Paolo Woods with the photo consultancy of Irene Opezzo. The texts that accompany the exhibition are by Bönz Malone––author of the book Hip Hop Immortals and a regular contributor to Vibe and The Source––one of the most respected voices of the movement.
The photographers in the group show are: Marc Baptiste, Janette Beckman, Sophie Bramly, Drew Carolan, Custom Gold Grillz, Brian Finke, Philip Knott, Dana Lixenberg, Clay Patrick McBride, Johnny Nelson, Jamel Shabbaz, Victor Zea