We are a team of artists committed to using the power of our art to CELEBRATE BLACK.

Combining our art with your personal stories, together we explore the complex relationship between sexuality and skin tone in the formation of black identity.

We hope to offer a deeper & more nuanced understanding this diverse spectrum of black identity. It is in the recognition of this diversity that 50 Shades of Black also acknowledges both the historical ways in which race and gender have been constructed and the role that skin tone and sexuality play in shaping the way we engage the world, how we perceive beauty, and how we understand own self-worth.

50 Shades of Black is one of  four signature projects of  BEAUTIFUL IN EVERY SHADE ™ created by Carlton Mackey.


50 Shades of Black: BOOK SERIES

50 Shades of Black (a 3 volume book series) is comprised of contributions from people all over the world in the form of scholarly essays, personal narratives, poems, photographs, paintings, and other artistic contributions.

-50 Shades of Black Vol. 1

(ORDER NOW)


*120+ page coffee table book that extends the conversation started in the ebook.  

*Contributions by Dr. Yaba Blay, Scottie Lowe, Dash Harris & many more.

*Interwoven with voices from the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Queer communities.  

*Special tribute to the legendary Joyce Bryant by her niece Robyn Labeaud. 

*Artwork by Andrew Thomas Clifton, Chris Charles, Chath pierSath, Fahamu Pecou, Ross Oscar Knight & more

*Includes African, African-American, Latino, Asian, Bi-racial, and Multicultural Perspectives.

50 Shades of Black Vol 1 Coffee Table Book was supported in part by an initial grant from the Emory College Center for Creativity & Arts.

 

 

Click Image to Download from iBookstore (for iPad or iPhone)

Click Image to Download from iBookstore (for iPad or iPhone)

FREE eBook

This introductory compilation ebook serves as the framework for much of a larger conversation to be explored in the coffee table book.

Available on the iBookstore for iPad or as a downloadable PDF file.

 

Don't Have an iPad?  Click here to DOWNLOAD PDF version. 


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50 SHADES OF BLACK Website:

a community-engaged platform for sharing, learning, growing, and healing using personal stories submitted by viewers and art to foster a global dialogue about sexuality and skin tone in the formation of identity.  Website includes blog with a diverse group of writers from across the country.


CONVO

CONVO is a series of social gatherings and conversations centered around a dialogue about the contemporary re-imagination of Black Aesthetics.  CONVO brings together artists and community together for Drinks, Music, Art, and Conversation.

CONVO is a partnership between 50 Shades of Black and Pepper


BEAUTIFUL IN EVERY SHADE ™: A Global Movement 

50 Shades of Black is proud to be one of four signature projects of BEAUTIFUL IN EVERY SHADE, a grassroots empowerment movement that believes in the beauty found in every human being.

The goal of this campaign is to offer everyday people around the world a chance to see themselves and others in a way they may never have before. 

Learn More about BEAUTIFUL IN EVERY SHADE

*50 Shades of Black is one of four signature projects of BEAUTIFUL IN EVERY SHADE ™


OPEN PHOTO SHOOTS


BLACK MEN SMILE:
Celebrating the Way We See Ourselves.
Raising Our Sons To See Themselves For Who They Are.

-a signature project of www.50shadesofblack.com

Black Men Smile because we love ourselves. This platform is not about respectability politics. It is about radical expressions of self love. It is about resistance. It is about learning from each other. It is about encouraging one another. It is about transcending. It is about “defying gravity”…as our ancestors have always done…and leaving a legacy so that generations after us may do the same.

-Carlton Mackey 


WITH YOUR HELP, TOGETHER WE CAN CREATE:

 

Photo by Carlton Mackey of the Atlanta Music Project After School Program

50 SHADES OF BLACK Educational Curriculum:

with your financial contributions we seek to develop an educational curriculum complete with supplementary brochures, workshops, and exercises based on the 50 Shades of Black stories and art work for a contemporary approach to teaching about diversity in K-12, college, non-profit, corporate, and religious settings. 


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50 SHADES OF BLACK Exhibit

with your financial contributions we seek to develop a traveling art exhibit highlighting the work of 50 Shades of Black featured artists.  While the traveling exhibit will be a permanent aspect of the project, we'd like to make original works by the featured artists available for collectors.  Prices will be set by artists. More info to come. 


Oral History Project

At the BEAUTIFUL IN EVERY SHADE (TM) Open Photo Shoots and Exhibits, participants will also have the opportunity to anonymously (or with full credit) record personal stories in a uniquely designed, custom built traveling audio booth. 


How Did 50 Shades of Black Come About?