The Sacred Art Of The Ori! Laolu Senbanjo Is The Cover Of Guardian Life Magazine

Life Cover

Meet Laolu Sebanjo whose art has appeared on bodies of celebrities like Beyoncé and Alicia Keys to products of global brands such as Nike and Bulgari.


Global recognition came for Laolu when Beyoncé worked with him on a video for a track off her visual album Lemonade. His art was featured on the bodies of Beyoncé and some of the dancers in the track “Sorry.”

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His feature in the four-minute video catapulted his art to the world which also initiated his parent’s acceptance of his art, as he recalls his dad calling him to ask, “Laolu, who is Beyoncé?”

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According to him, the representation of Ori is a concept he developed that draws inspiration from Yoruba mythology. As Ori, loosely translated to a personal god, is individualistic, so is its representation in Laolu’s work.

“What I do is I listen to your vibes and take elements from your Ori; your Ori could simply mean your vibe, it could mean your light, your intuition, it could mean a lot of things. If you give me a vibe of one of the Orishas, for example maybe Osun, Oya, Obatala or Sango, I take elements, existing patterns from these deities, and put those patterns on your skin. What I’m doing is transporting you from who you are now back in the past and putting you back in that person.”

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He is currently working on a visual album and would like to work with genius producer Cobhams.

Get a copy of #guardianlifeng to get all the scoop on Laolu Sebanjo.


Creative Direction: Chidera Muoka (@themadamezeta)

Photography: Niyi Okeowo (@niyiokeowostudio)

Stylist: Nkem Okorafor (@nkemokorafor)



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