Those Amazing Headsculpturethings
I'm talking about the ones Shabazz Palaces and THEESatisfaction rocked at the Genius Awards
—well, I just found out they're by the artist Maikoiyo Alley-Barnes
(I've written about him before here
), and the musicians will be wearing them again next week for their performance at the Museum of Natural History in New York
One, I cannot think of a cooler performance venue than the Museum of Natural History.
Two, about the headdresses: They are part of a series called Ode to Octavia
(Alley-Barnes calls the medium "refuse alchemy"), and they include vintage aviator goggles and post-consumer castoffs. There's no burning or welding or molding or carving—only the by-hand adding of materials. They weigh five pounds or less each, and they're part of Alley-Barnes's desire to make his art "move and be part of ritual
An email from Alley-Barnes:
They are made of plastic bottles (gallon jug, tide detergent bottles, etc.) styrofoam packing, tomato cages, cardboard, plastic bags, bubble wrap and masking tape. It is the same process that was used for the totems [which he showed at Pun(c)tuation in Seattle]. The process is more like mummification than anything else. There is a minimal amount of gluing, mostly just compression and binding. It makes for a very strong yet light end product.
*This post has been updated.