Grace Jones. Photo credit: Andrew Boyle
Ever since I moved to Los Angeles, and then to New York City, from Gainesville Florida, I have been in the presence of various celebrities. From Tyra Banks (who I obnoxiously gifted with a homemade business card for my fledgling graphic t- shirt line) to Tommy-From-Martin (who hired me to do graphic design for his vacation bible school curriculum, Be Still And Know). There was that time I toked with Puck from The Real World (San Francisco) -- I can't recall how that scenario even happened -- or when I convinced myself that Quentin Tarantino was making eyes at me at Twain's on Ventura Blvd.
The first time I ever saw a black American Express Card (it was some kind of metal), was at the hand of one of the Olsen twins. And I've seen John Lithgow and Alfre Woodard on the subway, brushed shoulders with Kanye West at a Taschen Party, and pulled 'another size' for both Rosie Perez and Erykah Badu, when I was working at a Brooklyn clothing boutique. All of this exposure has left me increasingly unfamiliar with being star struck. Fortunately I was reminded of the delicious surrender of fandom by the lightning bolt that is Grace Jones.
She performed at Afro Punk's Fancy Dress Party. She sang, she growled, purred and commanded manifesto into the microphone. Ms. Jones, of planet earth (surprisingly), held an audience of mere mortals in her hands. The drama of it all was almost overwhelming as she deftly moved though her music. I said "wow" more times than I can count, stunned by her assured confidence and magnetic... grace. There were costume changes, but with a bold assertion of her thonged-corseted-topless-painted-lithe-67-year-body. Grace tooted her butt on all fours, bared her signature teeth and hula hooped like it was a natural extension of her hips.
She is everything I hope to be as a performer. She is a truly gifted artist and a master teacher in living life as a fearless explorer. Thank you Ms. Jones for making me loose my shit.
Grace-FULL from Kenya Robinson on Vimeo.