• Call + Response

Capturing the Essence of Black Royalty in Real Ass Negus Series: Art by Tyrel De Bique

Tyrel De Bique, "Yes My Lawd"

Tyrel De Bique, visual artist and contemporary painter hailing from Trinidad and Tobago, has completed the first edition to his new series "Real Ass Negus". The self-trained artist works with acrylic, charcoal, and archival paper, creating pieces that aim to create dialogue on perception of Blackness and Black people who live in underprivileged communities.

De Bique found inspiration for this creative project through his surroundings. "Art can be found everywhere, creativity found in everyone," De Bique states, speaking to Call + Response Journal, "...but I noticed that while the ghetto youth appreciate and create [art], their voices are almost never heard in conversations about art. When they are allowed to speak, the mainstream seem to only want to hear of hardship, struggles and injustice".

We noticed a reoccurring theme in this collection which is the use of "slang" in conjunction with Trinbagonian dialect which De Bique incorporates to represent those who live in similar communities as himself. "[I] strive to document and highlight emotions, moods, victories and mindsets of persons living in similar communities," De Bique states. "[My] figurative and portrait pieces are guided by my immediate environment as well as my introspective nature".

We were stunned by the use of color and depth in this collection. Any viewer would be drawn into the detailed blue shadowed figures and the stories they long to tell. The gold leaf and spray paint are a perfect composite to juxtapose the harsh and dark charcoal. These details and more make for a provocative experience for viewers of all backgrounds. And of course, we're looking forward to the work De Bique has to offer in the future.

*Please experience Real Ass Negus thematically as the artist intended:

Tyrel De Bique, "Men Out Here Lookin For It, Brethren"

Tyrel De Bique, "Nobody On You SadistMan"

Tyrel De Bique, "Yes My Lawd"

Tyrel De Bique, "Big Man Ting"

De Bique is currently working on his next solo exhibition entitled Black Suns & Dawtas.

Website: www.tdebique .com

Instagram: @ohmygod_itstyrel