"See Yourself As Any Princess" | Art series by Precious Henshaw.
What it’s about: An artistic depiction of several popular, fictional princesses envisioned as Black girls.
Why I did this: Sometime in my teen years, when I was tutoring elementary school children, I overheard two Black girls talking about wanting to be Cinderella for Halloween. Another girl interrupted them and said, “You can’t be Cinderella, because you’re Black!” It bothered me. When my little cousins came along and they began to take interest in princesses, I often wondered how they felt about not looking like some of the popular ones, such as Cinderella and Snow White. Would they play princess happily until someone came and told them that they could never be a certain princess, because they are Black? It’s no secret that when the majority of characters on TV are white, some young Black girls can have a hard time identifying with them without feeling as though they needed to change their appearance in order to look more like them.
This art series is not meant to merely change white characters into ones of color, but rather to encourage my younger girl cousins - and any other young girl I might inspire - to see themselves as any princess they want to be, without feeling the need to change their skin or their hair.
Please look out for this series which is coming to my shop on June 6th.
This is v important because my three year old sister doesn’t think she can be a princess and when I put on fairy tales for her, she always asks for the brown princess (meaning tiana). I showed her this photoset and she could still identify every princess! She was also happy to see them look like her.