Fatigued by incessant news of black people being shot and killed, and with the election as the final straw, artist Alanna Airitam decided create a body of work to portray black people as she knows them to be, which is far from the media’s persistently negative narrative. “I was tired of the narrative that we aren’t worthy of being treated with respect, that we aren’t beautiful, that we don’t belong,” she says. Alanna set out to prove these negative messages false with images that reveal the “true grace, pride, beauty, power, and strength” of black people in the face of all they have suffered.
Who is Alanna?
Alanna Airitam is a fine art portrait photographer best known for The Golden Age, a series of portraits shot with classic Rembrandt style lighting. Themes in her work revolve around representation and using art as a platform for marginalized voices. A New York native, Alanna grew up in Dallas, and currently resides in San Diego. Her background in branding and design taught her how to tell someone’s story through imagery. “When someone sits for me, I listen to who they tell me they are, I then piece that together with who I see them to be and together we make a portrait.”