Ghanaian Artist Prince Gyasi Chosen to Photograph Vibrant and Culturally Rich 2024 Pirelli Calendar

Prince Gyasi

Accra-born and based visual artist Prince Gyasi, renowned for his vibrant and captivating images taken primarily in his hometown, has been selected as the photographer for the esteemed 2024 edition of the Pirelli Calendar. The Pirelli Calendar, an exclusive annual publication produced by Italian tire manufacturer Pirelli, is famous for featuring artistic and provocative photographs of models, actresses, and celebrities. As the calendar approaches its 50th edition since its inception in 1964, Gyasi’s appointment promises to bring a fresh perspective and vibrant celebration of African beauty and culture.

image 72
“They Were Gold“ — In His Pink Diary Series by Prince Gyasi

Gyasi’s meteoric rise to global recognition in the art scene is a testament to his immense talent and distinctive style. Despite being self-taught, he has successfully challenged conventional narratives about Africa, art elitism, and Western-centered ideals of beauty. Through his striking use of bold colors and contrasts, Gyasi captures the essence and dynamism of his hometown, Accra, while presenting his homeland in an inspiring and uplifting manner.

While Gyasi now employs state-of-the-art cameras, he initially embarked on his photographic journey using a basic smartphone at the young age of 16. In a candid 2019 interview with CNN Style, Gyasi revealed that he had aspired to become an abstract painter, but his love for creating art with his phone propelled him towards photography. His art pieces, resembling paintings more than conventional photographs, blur the lines between traditional art forms.

Gyasi’s work goes beyond aesthetics, carrying a deeply personal touch. His photography series often revolve around themes of childhood, fatherhood, motherhood, and the transformative role of education in helping underprivileged individuals escape poverty. He frequently focuses on various districts of Accra, using vibrant block colors and stark contrasts to juxtapose vivid reds, blues, or pinks alongside Blackness, celebrating and showcasing the beauty of Black African skin.

As an artist, Gyasi feels a strong responsibility to reshape the narrative surrounding Africa, dispelling negative stereotypes and showcasing the continent’s true potential. He firmly believes that art can be a powerful tool to influence societal perceptions and evoke positive change.

Beyond his artistic endeavors, Gyasi’s philanthropic pursuits are commendable. In 2017, he co-founded the non-profit organization “Boxed Kids,” which seeks to provide educational opportunities for children in Jamestown, a bustling fishing district where his mother, Abena Serwaa Ophelia, was born. This initiative aims to empower underprivileged children with education, similar to the transformative role it played in Gyasi’s own life.

Gyasi’s thought-provoking and evocative work has earned him a place in some of the world’s most prominent contemporary art collections. In 2021, Artsy reported that his photographs garnered the highest number of collector inquiries on the platform, surpassing renowned artists like David Hockney and George Condo. His unique style, hyper-colorful imageries, and synesthetic experiences create a distinctive viewing experience that resonates deeply with audiences.

Moreover, Gyasi’s collaborations with high-profile brands and personalities, including Balmain, Converse, and Virgil Abloh, have further amplified his artistic reach. His artistic journey includes capturing supermodel Naomi Campbell for the cover of Madame Figaro and Nigerian music icons Burna Boy and Wiz Kid for GQ US, highlighting his versatility in artistic expression.

Gyasi’s appointment as the 40th photographer for the Pirelli Calendar places him among esteemed predecessors, such as Norman Parkinson, Herb Ritts, Helmut Newton, Peter Beard, Mario Testino, and Patrick Demarchelier. Each photographer has contributed their unique style and signature to the calendar, ensuring its constant evolution and innovation. Now, Gyasi’s inclusion promises a vibrant celebration of African beauty and culture, leaving an indelible mark on the 2024 edition.

image 73
‘WHAT CARES THINK’ Prince Gyasi sole series.

The upcoming 2024 Pirelli Calendar, marking its 50th edition, follows the Love Letters to the Muse-themed calendar shot by Australian fashion photographer Emma Summerton for 2023, featuring prominent models such as Cara Delevingne, Precious Lee, and Adut Akech.

Gyasi’s opportunity to capture the Pirelli Calendar reflects his extraordinary journey as an artist and his dedication to showcasing the positive aspects of Africa. His visual storytelling and bold aesthetics are set to redefine and reimagine this iconic cultural institution, captivating viewers and enthusiasts alike. As the world awaits the 2024 Pirelli Calendar, all eyes are on Prince Gyasi, as he stands on the cusp of creating a timeless masterpiece that celebrates African beauty, culture, and resilience.

Credits: Prince Gyasi / PIRELLI

Solverwp- WordPress Theme and Plugin