Fotografiska New York
From April 22 – September 26, 2021
Beginning April 22 and lasting through Sept. 26, 2021, Fotografiska New York will display ONYX, a new series by New York-based photographer and art director, Adrienne Raquel. In her first-ever solo exhibition, Raquel’s photographic series was created specifically for exhibition at the New York museum. According to the press release, ONYX maintains Raquel’s soulful sensibilities even as she departs from the usual creative process of her acclaimed commercial work.
The enticing and provocative work is a photographic exploration of the famed Onyx strip club in Houston, Texas. The club-inspired curation displays a rich depiction of the dancers, bringing the viewer right into the nightclub scene. In it, Raquel favors a bold documentary style for her latest series, all while maintaining the glamour of her subjects.
“I wanted these photographs to reflect an enticing, timeless, bold visual style — all while capturing the essence of each entertainer from an empowered, artful perspective,” Raquel said. “ONYX tells a story in the heat of the moment — lending a true unstaged, behind-the-scenes look into the lifestyle and emotion present in each dancer’s narrative.”
With ONYX premiering in the wake of female performers such as Cardi B and Megan Thee Stallion denouncing the stigma society casts upon exotic dancers, Raquel highlights the nuances of Southern strip culture. With it, she captures the relationships between dancers, showing the intriguing narrative of femininity, sisterhood, transformation, and strength.
“Her images are at times dynamic and at others quiet – her macro portraits of nails, jewelry, and tattoos acting as personal vignettes to capture the essence of each dancer,” Fotografiska New York said of Raquel’s ONYX in a press release.
Using the timeless visual style of a late 1990s and early 2000s hip-hop video, Raquel photographs the dancers in their most vulnerable yet powerful positions whether it be on the pole, around the club, or backstage. The release further acknowledges that she has created an emotionally charged, colorful illustration of the Onyx strip club and the women who bring it to life.
For more information on how to purchase tickets to ONYX, click here.