The Afro’s historical roots and biological structure of follicle shape and size can be traced to ancient Egypt and the Sudan. Sacred art and artifacts from places like Ethiopia and the Middle East depict Jesus in a rounded halo of wooly hair that could easily be described as an Afro today. For some, natural hair is a birthright they never dared to deny, a proud crown of family hair-itage they have always appreciated. For others, natural styles can be tricky, unfamiliar territory that takes time and skill to navigate and master. Beyond inherited traits of texture, most will agree “the perfect Afro” is considered an artistic achievement of style. It requires hard work and dedication to conditioning and maintenance. Though the symbol and style of the Afro originates in communities of African descent, it has evolved cross-culturally to break color barriers and concepts of representation. It has transcended language and even given rise to new words that offer a sense of cultural origin and ownership. Perhaps the Afro is more than a symbol. Perhaps it is also an art form all its own that fuses tradition and trend, re-presenting and re-defining visions of blackness, boldness, and beauty with each new generation.

 

An except from Art Educator & Mythologist

li sumpter's foreword. Full three page

foreword can be found in the book

AFROS: A Celebration Of Natural Hair.