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MSSRANAN: In The 90s

Updated: Nov 18, 2021

In the 90s, my mother and father would send letters to their family in Suriname. Through the photos and cassette tapes, we would be able to connect with our roots that we were thousands of miles away from. We would pop in the tapes and the music, with West African influences and indigenous languages, would teach us stories of happiness, sadness, romantic relationships, love, family, heartbreak and death. The photos were shot on a disposable camera during COVID-19 to reflect the photos exchanged between my mother and her sisters in the early 90s. Using both traditional clothing from my maternal Arawak and paternal Afro-Surinamese heritage, we reimagined and deconstructed the outfits to meet the culture of Brooklyn where I grew up to tell this photo story.

The “thump, thump, thump” of the drum does something to me everytime I hear it. It makes perfect sense, the original intent of the drums in my culture is to invoke both Mother Earth as well as the listeners spirit. Listening and dancing to the mixture of language, drums, and different instruments makes me feel connected to my ancestors and grounds me. From shape, cut, and color of clothing to editorials, my main source of inspiration is my culture with Surinamese music as the soundtrack of my creativity. Whenever I feel like I’ve strayed too far away from my purpose, I can always tune into self, turn on one of my favorite bands (my current favorite singer is Carlos Aaron; his album is on Tidal which is major!!) and reconnect to my spirit.

Name one album you can listen to without any skips.

Freetown Sound- Blood Orange

3 songs that describe you?

Didon Visi by Ai Sa Si U Don’t Know (MOP Remix)- Jay Z Big Momma Thang- Lil Kim

If 2020 was a song what would be the title?

What The Fuck


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