Neequaye Dreph Dsane, better known as Dreph is an artist that has done something that many have tried and failed to do in the busy streets of London, stop and look around, or in his case, admire the beautiful huge wall art that he’s painted of his inspirational female friends.
The arresting images of the black women, which can be seen in various locations across London including Soho and in the east end, are part of Drephe’s You Are Enough series. His aim is to make black British women more visible.
Speaking to Channel 4 News in a short documentary, he said: “I just think it’s important that all stories are told. At this moment in time I’m celebrating black women. That’s the community that I’m from and I don’t think their stories are told enough. I’m not waiting for anyone to tell our story. I’m telling our story by myself.”
What makes his project even more heart-warming is the fact that his muses are women he knows from real life. “This project is about empowerment, it’s about female empowerment. All of the subjects are women that I know. They’re all normal women who do extraordinary things in the community.”
So, who are the subjects? Well, one of them is Linett Kamala, herself an artist and teacher who campaigns for every child to have a quality education. Speaking about the impact of seeing her image, she admitted that she was overwhelmed. The affirming nature of the title of the series, You are Enough, became even more relevant when Linett admitted her vulnerability in the film. She said: “This has been a bold move for me because through the piece, through talking to Neequaye, I’ve kind of disclosed my depression that I’ve been suffering with for a number of years. That will be news to a lot of people because very often they just see my smiley face. And I’m always talking about well-being and uplifting.”
Other women included in the series include youth workers, a health consultant, charity workers, and a psychotherapist.
We love this new movement of owning our narrative and celebrating our heroes and sheroes. Well done Neequaye!