Hackney ,

Beautifying the body and the quest for beautification


The beauty industry and society's quest for perfection was put under the spot light at a special Black History Month event. 

Author Christelle Kedi talked about her book , Beautifying the Body, which looks at the history of adornment and its practical application today in Africa - and among Black people worldwide in ancient Africa and today at Hackney Central Library (Tuesday 21 October). 

Body adornment has enormous significance in Africa and the quest for beautification is central to African cultures from the time of the ancient Egyptians up to the present. 

The presentation highlighted expressions of Black beauty, African fashions, history, contemporary styling options and European beauty ideals through history.

Christelle Kedi
I was so happy to see a mixed audience of both men and women coming to the event and how willingly they took part in the discussion around my book. Thanks so much to Hackney Libraries for asking me to do my presentation.
Christelle Kedi

Margaret Brown, 46, from Stoke Newington said: “I enjoyed the event very much and learnt a lot about how people presented themselves in fashion and beauty through the ages. “ 

Events continue until, November and include inspiring guest speakers, music workshops, dance classes and children’s events. One of this year’s highlights is Hackney Museum's exhibition ‘Strike a Pose’, based on photographs taken mainly during the 1970s at Gibson’s photo studio, Lower Clapton Road, Hackney. The exhibition runs until January 2015. 

Black History Month is a national annual celebration of the contribution that Black African and Caribbean communities have made both locally and across the globe. Most events are free and taking place at Hackney Museum and across libraries, and Hackney Archives. Some events require advance booking. For more information pick up a programme of activities from libraries and other venues across the borough.