Houston artists show off RAW talents
Local and traveling creative make-up and hair stylists, photographers, disc jockeys and traditional artists flocked to Numbers nightclub on Thursday for this month’s scheduled gathering hosted by RAW: Natural Born Artists.
The nationwide independent arts organization presented “Provocations,” showcasing selected works by choice talent, providing up-and-coming artists with a platform and necessary tools to promote their designs and network with potential colleagues and other artisans from around town.
More than 20 artists held stations around the club and dangled everything from fashion to fine arts in front of the eyes of awe-inspired attendees hoping to learn more about the arts.
In accordance with RAW’s mission statement, “Provocations” organized artists of all genres within the first 10 years of their careers into a loose schedule of independent films, fashions shows and musical performances to be judged by the night’s attendees and processed for evaluation and possible career-fostering awards at the end of the year by a panel of industry professionals.
Among the first to perform was Angela Olivia Guillory, who used softly spoken words to express soulful statements of culture pride and self-empowerment.
Local fashion designers, G&R Details, displayed their bow ties made of different fabrics with diverse patterns and prints such as camouflage, polka dots and stripes.
Although the artists often utilize the Internet to promote their crafts, meeting the faces behind the products is what RAW fosters as the first step between a community of starving artists and its audience.
After singer and songwriter Jess Walker took the stage with a cover of Jessie J’s “Price Tag,” she followed up with an original, soul-wrenching creation about domestic violence, called “Bones.”
“This next song is very dear to my heart. It’s about domestic violence in all its forms — domestic, physical — and how we need to talk about the issues and to make them go away,” said Walker.
Up next was a five-man hip-hop act, MadMen Crew, who prided themselves on their distinctive lyrical content and varying styles of delivery.
The next RAW artist showcase will be held Nov. 15 at Numbers for the semi-finals, where the top nominees will be selected as featured performers.
There will be further deliberation on who will go on to the annual indie award showcase “RAWards,” where judges and a community vote will determine who travels to Hollywood in January for the final show.
Additional reporting by Amanda Hilow.