Black Women Who Slayed History: Grace Jones
This Black History Month, we’re highlighting the black woman who helped make our world what it is today. Today, we honor Grace Jones.
Grace Jones is an ICON and subversive af.
She’s a singer, she’s a supermodel, she’s a gay icon, and she once smacked a smug British TV host on air for not taking her seriously.
Born in Jamaica in 1948, Grace Jones moved to Syracuse, New York when she was 13-years-old. Growing up, her dad was super into church, but Grace was more into getting glammed up, drinking, and dancing the night away at gay clubs.
After a wet, hot American summer dropping LSD and working as a go-go dancer for cash, Grace Jones moved to New York and signed with Wilhelmina — but she didn’t make a name for herself before she moved to Paris.
In America, they didn’t know what to do with Grace and her androgynous look and dark skin.
In Paris, they were like, “mon dieu, she is un star.”
She walked the runway for Yves St. Lauren, she graced the covers of Vogue and she actually shared an apartment with Jerry Hall and Jessica Lange for a hot second. Plus she hung out at Paris’ most hoppin gay clubs with Giorgio Armani and Karl Lagerfeld.
Then, she kicked off her career as a singer.
Although she was never as mainstream as say Madonna, Grace Jones had the charisma, uniqueness, nerve and talent to make her a star in her own right — especially when it came to fashion.
Plus she wasn’t afraid to do some really weird stuff in the name of art.
And she’s still alive today, writing memoirs and occasionally performing in full body paint and a Lion King-esque head.
For more on Grace Jones, click here.
And for more black women who slayed history read:
Black Women Who Slayed History: Diane Nash
Black Women Who Slayed History: Shirley Chisholm
Black Women Who Slayed History: Ida B. Wells