Every Monday I edit and write about an iconic person in the creative industry and post it on my Instagram account.
EVERY MONDAY I EDIT AND WRITE ABOUT AN ICONIC PERSON OR CHARACTER
AND POST IT ON MY INSTAGRAM ACCOUNT @GIANOCURRIE
This next icon, got my attention not trough his voice but through his taste of Art.
Being the son of an African-American father and caucasian mother in the city of Gaithersburg, Maryland he soon gained an interest in music. His spark came at age 13 when he got interested in rap and hip hop after watching the movie Kill Bill: Volume 1, directed by Quentin Tarantino.
He was expelled from high school many times and did not graduate high school which he later stated “I started doing badly and failed every class but English, so they kicked me out of school, they gave up on me.”
In 2010 he dropped his first mixtape called Young, Broke & Infamous starting his musical career in his hometown.
His last and most current Album, Everybody, debuted at number one on the US Billboard 200 setting the record for largest second week drop of all time. His lead single "1-800-273-8255" which caught the attention of fans all around the world including myself.
The song's name is the phone number for the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline. According to the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline, visits to their website increased from 300,000 to 400,000 over the following months.
His name is Sir Robert Bryson, known by his stage name as Logic. He is an American rapper, singer, songwriter, record producer and lastly, he gets the Art of Music.
Ricardo Casal (left) and Juan Javier Pena (Right)
I had the pleasure of listening, learning and meeting a power house duo of creative freedom.
Born and raised in Ecuador Guayaquil they started their creative journey by never ever giving up despite many setbacks. But they soon realized that the power is in improving your strength and not your weakness and that hint of creative awareness changed everything. Shortly after they started to roll in the awards and were soon noticed by some of the best agencies in the world.
Thought their career they have won multiple awards both at Cannes, Clio and D&AD. They have separately been nominated as the top Art Director and Copy writer in the world according to the Cannes Lions Global Creativity Report. By ADWEEK’s CREATIVE 100 they have also been recognized as the 2 creative directors that are reimagining what is possible in Advertising.
Their names are: Ricardo Casal (left) and Juan Javier Pena (Right) and they are a true inspiration to anyone working in advertising, no matter where you are from or what “title” you are given.
Wow, words cannot describe, the strides, the pain and the commitment to the craft as this spirit I’m about to write about. Before I do, I just wanted to center in on the word, pain, and what it stands for. I believe that pain works hand in hand with progress, and that relationship goes on forever. So now that I got that off my chest let’s go!
This spirit was raised in Wilmington North Carolina by his mother who worked in banking and father who worked as an equipment supervisor.
In high school he started his athletic career on both the Basketball, Football and Baseball courts. During his sophomore year he tried out for the varsity basketball team but was deemed too short. Being shuck by this setback he worked hard to stand out and became the star of his junior varsity squad. His rigorous training also made him grow four inches in one year making the cut.
His career as a professional athlete soon took off when he entered the NBA. As a rookie he quickly became the fan favorite even among fans on the opposing team. He was also featured on Sports Illustrated being quoted as “A Rising Star” in his first month as an NBA player. Veteran players did not take this well which led to a “freeze-out” on him meaning that other players would refuse to pass the ball to him throughout the game. He proved them wrong by being voted rookie player of the year after his first season.
Following three NBA Championships he suddenly retired to pursue a career in Baseball at only 24. This was not so sudden as his father had been murdered only three months earlier. Out of love of his father's dream of him becoming a baseball player he started a baseball career.
Fast forward; he has grown, prospered and inspired the world by never taking no, always getting back up and following his truest heart; his spirit.
His name is Michael Jeffrey Jordan and he is an American retired professional basketball player, businessman, and principal owner and chairman of the Charlotte Hornets of the National Basketball Association. He is also the third richest African American in the United States born from pain and lifted by spirit.
This young artist on the rise is truly someone to watch out for in the upcoming years. While still only 17 she has already debuted in films like "I Am Legend" and "Kit Kittredge: An American Girl" where she received a Young Artist Award for her performance.
She also rocked her music career in 2010 with the release of the singles "Whip My Hair" and "21st Century Girl." Shortly after she was signed to Jay-Z's record label Roc Nation becoming the youngest artist ever signed. "Whip My Hair" also became the number 11 on the Billboard Hot 100.
Besides her acting and music career she has also particular style reflecting a power, and softness in a modern millennial style.
Her name is Willow Smith and she is an American singer, actress and dancer.
Words cannot describe how much I admire this man, this icon, this typhoon of creative freedom despite what they might say.
I admire Kanye West simply because of one fact, misunderstood genius.
Chance the Rapper
This year instead of looking to the past I will be looking towards the future in my Monday highlights. Today I wanted to focus on someone whose words and actions have inspired me throughout my shoots, edits, breakups, makeups and lit ups. So here’s the new feel!.
He was born and raised in Chicago, Illinois. His love for music started with no one less than Michael Jackson, who he exclusively listened to on cassettes until the fifth grade.
In high school some of his teachers ridiculed his aspirations to become a musician for which he was once suspended for 10 days. In those 10 days he recorded his mixtape titled 10 day which he released December 2011. In February 2012 he was highlighted as one of Complex magazine’s “10 New Chicago Rappers to Watch Out For.”.
Since then This young man grabbed the attention of Forbes, Kanye West, The City of Chicago, Harvard University, Saturday Night Live to say the least.
His legend was sealed when in 2017 he won 3 Grammy Awards for Best New Artist, Best Rap Performance and Best Rap Album.
Shortly after he announced that he would be donating $1,000,000 to Chicago Public Schools in order to help offset the lack of government funding provided.
And besides a wonderful career the best thing about this young rapper are his uplifting lyrics, his philanthropic musical genius, and his total lack of the record label industry. Thank you for never backing down from who you really are, Chancelor Jonathan Bennett better known as Chance The Rapper.
Some of my top song picks are:
Chance the Rapper honors Muhammad Ali with musical tribute at 2016 ESPYs
Ultra Light Beam
May I have this Dance
♠️In the spirit of Christmas, I want to highlight someone that made the world a little bit brighter by offering us his young heart which still lives today. And so being a spirited day, I wanted to share these lyrics from “Man In The Mirror,” of which all profits went to charity.
“A willow deeply scarred, somebody's broken heart
And a washed-out dream
They follow the pattern of the wind ya' see
'Cause they got no place to be
That's why I'm starting with me.
I'm starting with the man in the mirror
I'm asking him to change his ways
And no message could have been any clearer
If you want to make the world a better place
Take a look at yourself, and then make a change”.
His name is Michael Jackson and during the 18,502 days lived, he became the King of Pop as one of the greatest performers in history.
Johan Henri Ferrier
♠️It’s Monday, there is a fresh breeze of 2018 in the air and I am back home. So being, I felt the strong need to highlight one person that made it possible for a nation to be born, a Suriname to be born..
This man was a teacher by heart and thus helped my country take its first steps as a sovereign nation equal to those of the world..
But before all this was possible, a vision needed to be made, a grand vision for the birth of a nation run for its people, by its people. That vision’s first goal was the establishment of Suriname’s first National Party..
Before reaching his ultimate goal he served as both prime minister and interior minister which paved the path for him to become the 1st President of Suriname from 25 November 1975, until 13 August 1980..
And since we are entering a new year soon, I found it only natural to reflect on a person that helped conceive the country, the home, the family I call my own..
His name was Johan Henri Eliza Ferrier, and he was the 1st President of Suriname and till 2009, the world's oldest living former head of state reaching the fine age of 99.
♠️Today’s highlight will focus on a man liked by his misunderstood-ness, a man famously criticized for his lavish acts. But also a man who despite not always being understood, made us remember his name through musea, honors and his surrealistic work.
To put a mark on who this man was, we must first look at the different styles and techniques used to produce his work, which included film, sculpture, and photography, in collaboration with a range of artists in a variety of media.
To put a character to his name can be accounted by famous artists like Pablo Picasso, Andy Warhol and even royalty by King Juan Carlos of Spain.
And finally, to put a soul to this man’s heart, we can only remember his words as spoken on his last public appearance: "Geniuses do not have the right to die because we are necessary for the progress of humanity. Viva el Rey, Viva España, Viva Cataluña."
His name was Salvador Domingo Felipe Jacinto Dalí i Domènech, Marquis of Dalí de Púbol, known professionally as Salvador Dalí, a son of Spain.
♠️Today I wanted to focus on someone I’m not that acquainted with but that has made a deep imprint in the NY Art scene. But more so this young man went through many hardships before finding his rightful place. So here we go!
He was born in a true mixed American Family from Haitian and Puerto Rican parents and was raised in Brooklyn, NY. His love for art came from his mother who used to bring him to art museums in Manhattan and enrolled him as a junior member of the Brooklyn Museum of Art. He learned to read and write at the age of four and by the age of 11 he was fully fluent in French, Spanish and English.
But as in any life, he also had his struggles, and after his mother was committed to a mental institution something changed. His father banished him from the household for dropping out of high school and so he stayed with friends in Brooklyn where he supported himself by selling T-shirts and homemade post cards.
But to every shadow, there belongs a light and in a matter of several years went from homeless and unemployed to selling paintings for up to $25,000.
So if you’re ever in a hard spot and you think there’s no way out, remember that every shadow needs a light.
His name is Jean-Michel Basquiat and he was a true American Artist.
The Notorious B.I.G.
♠️Today I wanted to highlight someone that paved the way for a whole new genre of music to thrive. Today that paved musical road has gone beyond the constraints of music which we can see in our fashion, our culture and our hopes. So instead of telling you about this individual, I’d like to show you his words.
"Sky's the Limit".
"If the game shakes me or breaks me/I hope it makes me a better man, take a better stand/Put money in my mom's hand/Get my daughter this college grant so she don't need no man/Stay far from timid, only make moves when your heart's in it/And live the phrase 'Sky's the limit.”
His name is Christopher George Latore Wallace better known as “The Notorious B.I.G.”
♠️ Highlighting someone today for mom. Why mom? Because the person today is someone I grew up hearing about and thus inspired me with her soft words just like mom. Here we go!
Some things you might know: She was a modern American Poet and Writer that also worked in the fields of Theatre, Acting, Writing novels and more importantly; the Civil Rights movement.
Some things you might not know: She became a poet and writer after a series of occupations as a young adult, including fry cook, sex worker, night club dancer and performer, opera cast member, conference coordinator, and finally as a journalist in Egypt and Ghana during the decolonization of Africa.
Her works are widely used in schools and universities worldwide despite some ugly attempts made to ban her books from U.S. libraries. .
She quoted: “You may write me down in history.
With your bitter, twisted lies,
You may trod me in the very dirt.
But still, like dust, I’ll rise.
Her name is Maya Angelou and her work and life experiences have left the world better in terms of identity, family and love.
♠️ Today I wanted to highlight someone whose music had a big impact on me while growing up. As any young man maneuvering himself through his puberty I was introduced to simple but powerful words in his music. One of his albums has even become a medicine for me when feeling down. So here we go.
He was born on the 6th day of February 1945 (the end of the second world war and start of the cold war) on the farm of his grandfather in Nine Mile, Saint Ann Parish, Jamaica. He was born to Cedella, a Jamaican singer and writer and Norval, a white Jamaican originally from Sussex, England, whose family claimed Jewish origins. When he was older he moved to the United States for a short time, during which he worked as a DuPont lab assistant and on the assembly line at a Chrysler plant.
Fast forward to 1962 when he recorded his first songs that would take him on a journey to discover his distinctive songwriting and vocal style that would later resonate with audiences worldwide.
Besides music he was also madly in love with the game of football (and yes the correct way of pronouncing soccer.) which played a major role throughout his life. He told a journalist once; "If you want to get to know me, you will have to play football against me.
And finally coming down to his last breath, at the age of 36, his last words to his son were "Money can't buy life."
His name is Robert Nesta “Bob” Marley and he was one of the greatest lyricists of all time.
And if you’re ever feeling down listen to the album “Legend” by Bob Marley and The Wailers and I promise you, you’ll feel better.
♠️ Today’s highlight will focus on spirituality. Not a subject that we all agree on but definitely one that has undeniably shaped us over the centuries.
This charter left a life of luxury to become an enlightened teacher eventually founding the philosophical system called Buddhism in the fifth century BC. He was a determined, honest and gifted communicator that led by example.
He left us the eight point path which follows these guidelines: Find your; right view, right intention, right speech, right action, right livelihood, right effort, right mindfulness, and right concentration to be free of suffering.
His name was Siddhartha Gautama, and he is the father of Buddhism and the first person in history to have condemned slavery.
♠️ Before Simba, before Timone, before Pumba, you had Rafiki. A wise, crazy, strange and yes, funny Baboon who's simple knowledge left something in all our young hearts.
I wanted to highlight this particular character, not because of it's nostalgic relation to the movie "The Lion King," A story influenced by William Shakespeare's Hamlet, but because of his soft touch on one very simple question which I hope still lives in your hearts today:
"The question is, who... are you?"
♠️ For today’s highlight I wanted to focus on something beyond the constraints of science; love....“I deeply regret not having been able to express what is in my heart, which has quietly beaten for you all my life. Maybe it’s too late to apologize, but as time is relative, I need to tell you that I love you and thanks to you I have reached the ultimate answer!”.
Your father Albert Einstein.
♠️A philosopher once told me that life matters because of music and art. Hence today’s highlight of one funky brother that has made musical waves that we still feel today.
This American icon was known as a singer, songwriter and record producer, being one of the first Motown artists, second to Stevie Wonder, to break away from the reins of a production company. He also influenced contemporary R&B sub-genres like quiet storm nan neon soul.
Beyond his life he has won the Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award, the Rhythm and Blues Music Hall of Fame, the Songwriters Hall of Fame and the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.
They call him the “Prince of Soul”
And his name is Marvin Gaye (April 2, 1939 - April 1, 1984.)
Walt Elias Disney
♠️ Another person of interest today: He is an Entrepreneur, an Animator, a Voice Actor, and a Film Producer that holds the current record for most Academy Awards earned by an individual (22 Oscars from 59 nominations.) But his best kept trait was setting out to create a new world that would inspire the imagination of a new generation.
First, think. Second, dream. Third, believe. And finally, dare. -Walt Elias Disney (December 5, 1901-December 15, 1966.)
♠️ Today I wanted to highlight an artist that embodies what it means to be truly innovative in the arts.
In his lifetime he consistently pursued making things a little bit more different, a little bit more controversial and a lot more himself. He did this as a painter, sculpture, printmaker, ceramicist and stage designer. And on his pursuit to finding himself he also co-founded cubism, which opened the door to modern art in the 20th century.
Fast forward to our 21st century, we often think of innovation as a line of code or a way of making things a little bit easier for ourselves. But innovation is also part of making us feel, think and see things in a new light. So let's not only focus on making things easier than before, but let's also strive to make things look, feel and taste different than before.
Pablo Picasso (October 25th, 1881 to April 8, 1973) .
H. 🎩 thank you for leaving a little bit of heaven on earth.