A Brooklyn-based Nigerian-born performance and visual artist, one of Senbanjo’s main artistic mediums is the skin; he is best known for his body-painting featured in Beyoncé’s Grammy Award-winning visual album, “Lemonade.”
He’s graced the cover of the Washington Post, and has been featured in The New York Times, The Guardian, Vogue, BBC, CNN, and NBC. In addition to Beyoncé, he counts artists including Alicia Keys, Swiss Beatz, Seun Kuti, Tony Allen, Alek Wek, and Danielle Brooks among his collaborators.
Senbanjo applies his mantra, “Everything is My Canvas,” to mural designs, fashion partnerships, live art events and installations, and now to the new limited-edition Belvedere Vodka bottle. The first Belvedere bottle with high-quality full-wrap sleeve technology features a flowing design with sharp edges that represent the water and rye working together to produce dimension and taste. Subtle skin-sense texture, which reacts to UV lights, is used to bring another sensory component to the bottle. The charcoal coloring and distinct shapes create complex, story-rich designs, which draw heavily from his Yoruba heritage.
“When Laolu paints a subject, each design is unique to what he believes depicts their inner beauty. This phenomenal message is seamlessly in line with our mission to reveal the unexpected beauty in life,” said Rodney Williams, president of Belvedere Vodka. “Also as a social advocate and former human rights attorney, Laolu’s philosophies align with our commitment to community and creating positive action in the world; in this case, the program supports (RED) and the Global Fund to fight HIV/AIDS in Africa, a mission we’ve been supporting for 8 years.”
“As an artist I get to share my soul with people around me, my environment and the world and I’m able to channel my experiences like my journey as a human rights attorney and as a Nigerian” said Laolu Senbanjo. “I developed a concept that I call ‘The Sacred Art of the Ori’ which is based on Yoruba mythology. It’s about the connection between me as an artist and my subject, and expressing that on the canvas. The Belvedere bottle design came from that inspiration as well as doing a lot of research about what Belvedere is at its core, like the Polska rye and the pristine water. The bottle is an amazing blend of my art and bringing to life what Belvedere stands for – and I get to be a part of giving back to society, which means a lot to me.”
Belvedere Vodka and Laolu will reveal the limited-edition bottle at events planned for at New York Fashion Week, in Nigeria and South Africa from September. Limited edition bottles now available.