Roots For A Crown

  • Tobi Kyeremateng
  • Christopher West
  • Korrie Powell

Written and directed by Sierra Leonean via London poet Julianknxx, Roots for a Crown explores the negative perceptions and prejudice surrounding locked hair. In this imaginative docufiction, various storytellers delve into the symbolism and traditions behind their locs, and discuss how their hair has become an aesthetic marker of ancestral identity. “Hair has become an aesthetic marker of ancestral identity” Co-directed with British filmmaker Chris West, this short moves fluidly between poetry, music and visual art. Cowrie shells, traditional African dress and wax print fabrics amplify the cultural roots of locked hair, while Julianknxx’s rousing soundtrack speaks of community, shared lineage and pride. Originally commissioned by the Roundhouse, a performing arts space in London, Roots for a Crown is the latest project from the poet that draws heavily on his own biography—which commonly considers themes of masculinity, Blackness and mental health.