The Pursuit of Nappiness; Bad hair at its best!

The Pursuit of Nappiness; Bad hair at its best!

This photo exhibit is a must see for every one who ever thought Black people had “bad” hair. It pictures a hardly exposed world, in which natural African hair is the rule rather than an exception, to reveal the new meaning of “bad” hair.

Struck by the beauty and the versatility of natural styles at the annual BAM Fair in Brooklyn, Mireille Liong realized that this was the first time in her adult life that she entered a community where African hair was so dominant that it seemed normal. She started to take pictures to reveal this amazing experience. The result is an unprecedented collection of over a 1000 photos that illustrates bad hair at its best in the Pursuit of Nappiness.

A compilation of these images will be on display at the Casa Frela Gallery in Manhattan New York from November 1st to November 30th. It’s the photographer’s hope that exposure to her collection leads to more natural choices as well as a broader acceptance of afro-centric hair in a society where straight hair is the norm.

The openings reception on November 1st will be followed by special events scheduled on Sundays. Besides the screening of the award winning documentary My Nappy Roots, there will also be a hairstyling and head wrap demonstration. The Pursuit of Nappiness will stylishly come to a close with a natural hair show on the last Sunday.

Mireille Liong is the author of the groundbreaking book, “Going Natural, How to Fall in Love with Nappy Hair, currently ranked number one at” She is also the owner of, a natural hair portal where visitors can learn all about natural hair care, styling options and catch a sneak peek at Liong’s work.

The Pursuit of Nappiness

Openings reception: 11/1/2008 at 7:00 pm
Casa Frela Gallery 11/1/2008 – 11/30/2008
47 West 119th St.
New York, NY 10026

From Downtown Manhattan by Subway:
Take the “Uptown #2 or #3” train to 116th Street. Exit onto Lenox Ave and walk 3 blocks to 119th Street.


2 thoughts on “The Pursuit of Nappiness; Bad hair at its best!

  1. Challenge 3
    America’s Next Natural Model (ANNM) is’s annual pageant that celebrates the beauty and versatility of African hair. The goal of ANNM is to show the unexplored beauty of natural hair and to diversify the image of Black women in the media.

    In the 3rd week of the annual pageant, the contestants were asked to create an ad for a new line of Jamaican Mango & Lime products as their 3rd challenge. Jamaican Mango & Lime products are meant for natural hair and contain a blend of nourishing herbs, fruits and plant extracts found in the fertile Jamaican soils. The ad shoot by all models were evaluated by the ANNM panelists and were rated accordingly.
    Rachel Ritfield, the international model and celebrity had varied opinions on the ad shoot by different models. Rachel thought that Georgia based Munya’s hair looked great in her shoot but the shots lacked variety. She advised Munya to make her shots more model like and less amateurish. She said she loved Georgia based Ebony’s shots but found the products missing from them, thus making the shoot look nothing like a campaign. Nina belonging to Illinois managed to win praise from Rachel for the ‘girl next door’ feel she brought to the products. She was advised by the international model to be more aware of her body positions in the next challenges. Rachel was happy that Natasha Beals made more effort this week and she thought her last shot with the products against her bare skin could make a nice poster. However, Rachel was not too happy with the shoot of the Michigan based model Laura and asked her to stick with less gimmicky shots and consider less as more.

    New York based Timolin managed to get praises from Rachel for a beautifully shot campaign. Rachel thought that her 4th picture could be the campaign shot for Jamaican Mango & Lime products. She also corrected Timolin’s technique of putting arms in front of the camera. She liked the use of Jamaican colors in the shoot by another New York based ANNM model, Stephanie. However, she thought that the shoot looked gimmicky and lacked feminine apparel and elegance. For Raven from Georgia, Rachel liked the back shot and the creativity of the shoot, but she wasn’t satisfied with the way Raven’s hair looked for a hair product campaign. Rachel said she was most disappointed with Florida based Dentrika’s shoot and advised her to show improvement next time.
    Rachel Ritfield offered this advice to the contestants, “When shooting with products, always make sure they are clearly visible and facing the camera”.

    For more feedback of the judges, pictures of the models and scoop on American’s Next Natural Model, visit

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