Yagazie Emezi


Cultural Anthropologist & Africanist

None of the images posted here belong to me unless stated otherwise.


Ilan Godfrey: Legacy of the Mine is a visual narrative of untold stories, exploring the consequences of mining on South Africa’s land and people. The objective was to reveal through the lens the forgotten communities that the mining industry has left behind. Godfrey’s subjects become symbols of the struggle for environmental and social justice in the country. 

The ‘legacy’ of mining is apparent in many ways – through land rendered unfit for alternative uses, public health crises, land and water pollution, and the impact of historical labour exploitation on family structures. Unveiling these stories through investigative fieldwork across the country, Godfrey delves deeper into the effects of the mine on local communities.

Ilan was born in Johannesburg in 1980. His personal work focuses on extensive issues that reflect South Africa’s constantly changing landscape, documenting the country with an in-depth, intimate and personal conscience. By conveying through long-term projects a process of exploratory narration with photography, he reveals varied aspects of societal change across the country.


Leonce Raphael Agbodjelou. Untitled (Vodou Series), 2011.

Leonce Raphael Agbodjelou’s photographs of the people of Porto-Novo, Benin (formerly Republic of Dahomey) are drawn from street life, his friends, family and studio customers. Benin is all about colour – Porto Novo is like a visual assault.In Leonce’s impressive portraits, wild combinations of locally designed Dutch imported textiles create extreme gradations between background, foreground, person and clothing. Leonce is part of a generation experiencing rapid change and his photographs capture the energy and unfettered zest for life of a people caught between tradition and progress. 


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Balotelli’s Burden Shirts. Named for the near-legendary Italian soccer player of Ghanaian descent, our Balotelli pop-over shirt is an homage to the many Africans who have emigrated to Europe in search of opportunity. Whether they be players of The Beautiful Game, or tourists of the beautiful streets, not all them are welcomed with open arms. This garment is a sober reminder that there are still individuals who face mistreatment because of their hue and heritage. By combining soft-Italian tailoring with prints reminiscent of West Africa, the Balotelli bolsters the notion that beautiful things are born when we allow our cultures to boldly intertwine.

Ikiré Jones

Nicki Minaj shining a light on the differences on acceptable sexuality from white women and black women.

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Canadian music festival takes huge step against Native appropriation

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From their announcement:

For various reasons, Bass Coast Festival is banning feathered war bonnets, or anything resembling them, onsite. Our security team will be enforcing this policy.

We understand why people are attracted to war bonnets. They have a magnificent aesthetic. But their spiritual, cultural and aesthetic significance cannot be separated.

Bass Coast Festival takes place on indigenous land and we respect the dignity of aboriginal people. We have consulted with aboriginal people in British Columbia on this issue and we feel our policy aligns with their views and wishes regarding the subject. Their opinion is what matters to us.

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Press Release: ELLE Announces 2014 Rising Star Design Award

ELLE and Mr Price have joined forces again and the search is on for the 2014 ELLE Rising Star. The competition is open to all aspiring young designers and offers the winner a springboard for launching a career in fashion. This year the search is not just countrywide, though – it’s continent-wide as ELLE and Mr Price are casting their fashion net wider and have opened up the competition to young designers across Africa.

Young designers, are you Interested?!

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Dedicated to the Cultural Preservation of the African Aesthetic

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AXS Folk Technology Spring/Summer 2015 Look-book

Art directed and Photographed by - Us/ Durimel

Designed by - Kyle Ng

Definitely one of our favorite photo projects so far. We were excited to shoot the collections just after seeing the fabrics Kyle used. Theres an interesting play on fits and technical design that caught our eye so we had some fun!   

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Lagos Night

Briefly recapping my night out in Lagos, Nigeria and watching the interaction between a Nigerian prostitute and a foreigner. It’s not an uncommon sight, but I suppose having interacted with the man first hand (he works for my friend’s father) and him revealing his viewpoint as a white man clearly still feeling superior in a black man’s land; it was just left a very bitter taste in my mouth to watch this beautiful, young black woman be handled by him….

Similarly in the Port Harcourt area where there are a lot of oil refineries and where there are white expat enclaves, this is standard. Many young girls are sadly trying to land a rich white man so they can be taken care of. There are also some who become housegirls, cooks or cleaners for them, but there is a sexual arrangement in exchange for providing them with employment, food and shelter. It’s desperation and crippling poverty. School fees are expensive, and you know in Nigeria, some parents can’t afford to send all their children to school, so it’s usually the oldest who gets an education. If it’s between a boy and a girl, then the boy will be the one sent to school. With the girl, they figure she will find someone to marry her.

It’s a double whammy really. The multinationals these white expats work for like Shell, Chevron, Agip etc have destroyed the Niger Delta with oil exploration. The way many supported and sustained themselves is gone because of pollution. People are desperate, and desperate people will do anything. So after the employers of these expats have decimated these places after decades of exploitation, they now come for cheap sex. No matter what the sex workers are getting paid in Naira, it is cheap when compared to the Euros and Dollars expat workers get paid in. The rate for sex is always affordable for a white expat. This is why they are there.

Most of these girls start out young. Some places are worse than others. I’m sure you know that Calabar is pretty popular with white tourists. They love talking about the scenery, the culture and beaches. The new thing is the Calabar Carnival. Yes, that’s it, old white men are coming to Nigeria for Carnival. I hope no one believes that. If anyone believes old white men are flocking to Calabar for beaches, resorts, nature’s wonders and to take in the culture, then I don’t know what to tell you. Many are there for young girls. If they are sent there for employment, then the cheap sex is a bonus. It’s a well known thing that people don’t like to discuss openly, in part because many parents are complicit. Some sex workers got their start by being coerced by their parents and guardians, but again, it’s a thing that is taboo to discuss. They will deny it, and Nigerians don’t openly like to discuss anything relating to sex. Here Nigeria is, the largest black population in the world, but they like to pretend that sex isn’t happening. Everyone is “pious” and “moral”. In Nigeria, they knack like rabbits, but it’s always in secret.

A lot of press has been given to places like Thailand and the Philippines with regards to sex tourism in the last decade. African countries are slowly becoming a destination for many Europeans because of the lack of scrutiny and the way people turn a blind eye. These white guys are pretty open and brazen about it because Nigerians treat oyinbo people with respect, and are generally deferential towards foreigners because of their economic situation. In turn, these expats have free reign to run wild and do whatever they like, and they are doing just that.

There was a friend of mine who got in trouble with the police after he intervened in the kind of situation Yagazie talks about. Basically a white man maltreating a Nigerian sex worker at a night club trying to push her into his car, my friend, who is just that kind of person, went off on the man. In the end the police got involved telling him to leave the white man alone as if he was the victim.

Nigerians can really be complicit when it comes to the all wise and powerful oyinbo. It’s ridiculous and needs to stop already. White men have been taking advantage of Nigerian women for centuries.

My first ever encounter with white expats in Lagos was something similar. My family (both sides) are poor and from the countryside, so with the exception of those few who live in the north, the handful who’ve since migrated to the other cities, and the tiny branch who stayed in the diocese after the war forced my mother’s family to flee to Okigwe, there was never much cause to venture to the urban areas of the country. This was just after my grandmother fell seriously ill, just months before we left for London, and my first time back in Nigeria since I was five (we’d been living in Morocco), so I couldn’t have been older than about fourteen.

Reblogging because. Truth.





dancing at home, the best self care workout. the song is ‘africa hoye’ by toofan and recently, it’s become this magical pick-me-up. every time i listen to it, it just makes me so goddamn happy because soukous and soccer. you can watch the music video for it here. - azemezi

im so glad for this person feeling so good, like look at this, this is wonderful, i want to watch this everyday


Growing up in Nigeria, one of my favorite bi-weekly activities fell on a Saturday when I would trot off and get my hair buzzed for school. I always stuck to one barbershop because you grow to realize that it’s hard to replace the one person you trust with your hair. You become fond of the background noise of laughter and insult, you appreciate the tattered magazines falling off tables, and you are soothed by the humming of the razor against your scalp - Yagazie

Photographer Andrew Esiebo spent three months documenting the barbershops of West Africa, all very much varying in appearance. But regardless of what they look like, be it in Mali or Liberia, barbershops carry a deeper social and cultural meaning other than simply a place you get your hair cut.

Andrew Esiebo started out in photography by chronicling the rapid development of urban Nigeria as well as the country’s rich culture and heritage. As his work began to gain international recognition, Andrew’s started to explore new creative territory, integrating multimedia practice with the investigation of themes such as sexuality, gender politics, football, popular culture and migration. 

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Dedicated to the Cultural Preservation of the African Aesthetic

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I’ve been enjoying the images Zina Sara-Wiwa has been putting up on her personal Instagram!

Zina Saro-Wiwa is a video artist and film-maker. She makes video installations, documentaries, photographs and experimental films. She currently lives and works in the Niger Delta where she is making new work for two museum shows and where she has set up her own pop-up, artist-run art gallery called Boys Quarters Project Space, in the city of Port Harcourt.

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Dedicated to the Cultural Preservation of the African Aesthetic

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Meet Your Photographer: Jjumba Martin

Meet Your Photographer, a short series that will be introducing you to the contributing photographers of yagazieemezi.com over the next couple of weeks. You will be seeing their work on here fairly often so this is an excellent way for you to get familiar with these talented folks. 

My name is Jjumba Martin and I am a freelance Ugandan photographer.

In 2009, I was inspired to do photography after learning that Uganda does a lot of importation with regards to photographers who do different kinds of documentation. I am a simple man who loves making photographs and spending time with my little god-son.

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Dedicated to the Cultural Preservation of the African Aesthetic

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Yaga Life Facts:

Here are some of my personal cartoons accompanied by my little life facts of my feels.

  1. Look at yourself naked and know it could always be worse. Appreciate what you have.
  2. It’s perfectly normal to feel like you’re going to be alone FOR THE REST OF YOUR LIFE. Lol, hug your pillow.
  3. The days you feel most alone, reach out to someone you love…even if it’s your cat.
  4. Be okay with the downs of life. Like rain, they don’t last forever.

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Bel humour.

This woman is great.

I love her.







I’m basically lecturing you guys out there, sorry lol. (And I def used the poorest metaphor in this, in fact it wasn’t even a metaphor)

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Spot on.

Being ambitious and bring passionate about your ambitions are wonderful traits to have. Don’t change

Reposting so I can hear my own damn self again, I’ve been slacking with my work ethic…

Me everyday trying to explain my life.



Yagazie Emezi shot by Yagazie Madu

I met up with contributing photographer and my namesake, Yagazie Madu with the plan of accompanying her on one of her shoots to see her in action. NO clue how this happened lol!  See more

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Dedicated to the Cultural Preservation of the African Aesthetic

Dang it yagazie you play like you’re this tomboy girl and then you show us glamour puss. Love it all