Neequaye “Dreph” Dsane has revamped the city walls of London to showcase powerful women of African and Caribbean heritage. In Dsane’s series, he showcases a total of ten paintings across the capital.
These extraordinary, unsung heroes truly shine through Dsane’s murals, but most importantly highlight them for their strength.
Whether it’s overcoming domestic violence, sexual abuse, or exemplifying black beauty, these women in the series entitled, “You are Enough,” are women the artist has met at events, teachers, and even the mother of his son.
Take a look at Derph’s inspirational movement.
The 10th and final subject in the 'You Are Enough’ series is Shaney Blackman @She_Travels . I first met Shaney in Marrakech earlier this year and we immediately connected based on our shared passion for travel. . . Having spent the majority of her career as a Legal Secretary in a Magic Circle Law firm, although comfortable she was not content. She felt as though she was going through the motions and says that “at some point we all have to work out what makes us happy”. So she followed her instincts, ignored the naysayers and after months of meticulous planning and rigorous saving, she finally quit her job to travel the world. Shaney embarked on this journey 2 years ago and is still doing so, having now visited over 50 countries and countless cities. She really doesn’t see her story as anything special but she is grateful and ceasing the opportunities as they arise. . One of her goals while travelling is to learn something new and give back in every location. Recently she has lived with a local family in Colombia, helping them with their English and obtain a visa to visit their family abroad. She has spent several weeks assisting a well-known spiritual healer in Bali, and lived on organic farms trading her services for knowledge and a place to stay. . . I admire her outlook and courage for walking away from many of life’s luxuries and breaking societal norms. She has worked hard to afford herself this lifestyle and she plans to continue experiencing new cultures for the foreseeable future. . 📸 : @c.accheri
The 9th Subject from my ‘You Are Enough’ series is artist and educator @linett_kamala. Linett is passionate about improving the lives of others, especially young people through education and the arts. She has worked tirelessly with organisations across the private, public and not-for-profit sectors on educational assignments and creative projects, particularly with the goal of providing enriching opportunities for disadvantaged young people. For over 26 years she has quietly influenced change within the U.K. education system helping staff and students achieve excellence in schools facing significant challenges. As a founding cohort member of The Future Leaders Headship programme in 2006 and speaker at numerous education events, she helped to shape and influence various government policies of the view that ‘every child’ is entitled to a quality education provision regardless of their background and with the right support can be helped to reach their full potential. . Her professional career in education begun in 1996 as a teacher of art and design and unusually for someone with a visual arts background in education, she became an education director for a multi-academy trust which at the time had over 5,000 children across its schools. Linett has gone on to train, mentor and inspire hundreds of head teachers, including many black and asian school leaders into their first senior leadership roles and headships. . In 2008 whilst working as a senior leader in a challenging school, Linett was diagnosed with depression. Through the support of her family, loved ones and health professionals she was able to return to the profession. However, she has kept her condition hidden for fear of being stigmatised by those within her profession. This is despite her being an advocate on the importance of wellbeing for students and staff within the education system, particularly for those in challenging circumstances. . Linett has bravely agreed to use this platform to share her struggles of not only working as a black female at the top of the education system in the U.K., but also one who lives with depression. . wall provision : Claptwn.blogspot.co.uk at @brixtonstreetgym
The 8th subject from my ‘Your are Enough’ series is Leyla Hussein @LeylaHusseinUK. Leyla is a psychotherapist specialising in supporting survivors of sexual abuse. She is a leading international campaigner on female genital mutilation (FGM) and her passion is to empower women and girls. Leyla founded The Dahlia Project, the UK’s first specialist therapeutic service for FGM survivors. She created the ground-breaking Face of Defiance project which is a series of photographic portraits and interviews with FGM survivors. Her documentary “The Cruel Cut” with Channel 4 on FGM in the UK was nominated for a Bafta in 2014, She successfully lobbied at a political level and her e-petition 'Stop FGM in the UK Now' gathered over a million signatures, triggering a debate in Parliament on FGM in the UK. As a writer, Leyla has been published in national media and she regularly appears in both print and broadcast as an expert commentator. Leyla was named Cosmopolitan Campaigner of the Year 2010 and she was included in the BBC 100 Women List in 2013, Woman’s Hour Power List 2014 and Debretts 500 as one of the UK’s most influential people. Leyla's drive, passion and tenacity regarding her work is truly admirable. Regardless of the physical and emotional attacks she has received from some members of the Somali community, she is committed to her mission and says" protecting children from harm overides everything". Creating safe spaces for survivors of violence is deeply rooted in the core values of her work as a psychotherapist and social activist. Going forward she wants to continue building safe spaces globally, particularly in the motherland. #YouAreEnough #RememberHome @biggerthanus_
The sixth subject for my ‘You Are Enough’ series is Myvanwy Evans @Myvanwys who I met through my cousin @Uncle_Kof, and subsequently realised that we had many mutual friends. Myvanwy was raised in the 80's pre gentrification of working class Shoreditch. Incidentally she went to Uni a stones throw from where this mural was painted. She runs the cultural marketing agency Louder Than Words @ltwltd who engage international talent, communities and young people on high profile media campaigns for clients such as Tate, MTV and Mayor of London. Myvanwy was raised in a socialist family of political activists, which she says has influenced the focus of her work to raise the visibility of important youth and community programmes that positively impact lives. She also mentors young people, helping to steer their careers and individual life journeys. Her view is that if everyone mentored one young person there would be dramatically lower incidents of youth suicide and knife crime. What many that know Myvanwy are unaware of is that she is a trained fine artist, photographer and illustrator. These passions run deep, and her vision for the future is to dedicate more time to her art practice. #portraiture #portrait #art #melanin #painting #blackgirlmagic #afropunk #afropunklondon #naturalhair #streetphotography #printmaking #mentoring #portraitpainting #youarenough #rememberhome @biggerthanus_
The 5th subject of my ‘You Are Enough’ series is my mentee @Fungizzleartist. Fungai was born in Zimbabwe and moved to the UK in 2007, following her adoption by her sister and brother-in-law after the tragic loss of her mother in 2000. She is the last born of 6 children from a blended family. She received her Fine Art degree from Havering College where she now works as a Printmaking technician, she also works at Art Fairs and facilitates community print workshops particularly, for young children. She is in an experimental phase with her Art practice, focusing on being expressive through the use of different materials & looks forward to seeing where the journey takes her. Although she misses her homeland she doesn’t take for granted the position she finds herself in and dreams of opening a Print Studio back home in the future. The Bronze crochet top worn by Fungai was formerly her Mothers back in the 70's. For her it signifies, strength, confidence and inner peace. #portraiture #portrait #art #melanin #painting #blackgirlmagic #afropunk #afropunklondon #naturalhair #streetphotography #Zimbabwe #printmaking #mentoring # #portraitpainting #youarenough #rememberhome @biggerthanus_
(FEATURED IMAGE: Dreph / Instagram)