THANDIWE MURIU

KENYA

Thandiwe Muriu and the glory of the black model

    Passionate about photography since the age of 14, Thandiwe Muriu grew up in Kenya in a family marked by art, surrounded by a stylist sister and a second, virtuoso pianist. She refined her photographic practice during her adolescence, influenced by Vogue magazine and the aesthetic canons in one of this feminine publication, she took one of her sisters as a model and tried her hand at portraiture in complete freedom.

It was the time of the rise of social networks, his photographs met with great success and led him to sign his first order as a young talent.


Rare woman in the environment then reserved mainly for men, she pursued higher studies in business school and worked simultaneously alongside Mutua Matheka or Emmanuel Jambo. After obtaining her diploma, passionate about the 8th art, she devoted herself definitively to fashion photography and from the age of 23, signed her first contract for an international campaign.


Like her fellow citizens, it is important to her to highlight the natural beauty of women with whom she can identify. Her compositions paint an aesthetic linked to the criteria of beauty of black femininity. Models essential to the African readership from the country and the diaspora, still too often absent in one of the magazines. Thus, through her art, she sublimates black skin, typically Afro hairstyles. In addition, the photographer reconnects with the glorious past of the African empires thanks to this glorification of black models but also by having recourse to fabrics, available in frank and vivid colors enveloping her subjects.


Determined, passionate, she wishes to embody a spearhead for a whole new generation of committed women. Next challenge? Take the photograph of a Vogue cover.

She considers the series entitled "Camo", started in 2015, as an achievement marking a decisive stage in her artistic process.

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