A conversation on art and culture + Dapper Dan & Tracee Ellis Ross

Moderated by Elaine Welteroth, a spirited conversation between fashion icon heavyweights, Dapper Dan and Tracee Ellis Ross at the Beverly Center’s ROOM Service Launch event 10.18.18.

Thankful to be in the room, as Dapper Dan is my father’s brother and a prominent force in our family, it was necessary for me to see what gems he was going to drop on the Los Angeles tastemaker scene.

A lot was shared and there were important take aways. I will only share two.

On the heels of Tracee’s AMA hosting gig, she stated that while she could give a monologue statement piece on the climate of society and her views as a whole, it is more effective to use her body, her agency to make the most boldest statement ever told on the AMA stage. Consciously wearing BLACK designers was not only a choice and statement, but a charge she has taken to heart. While making her mark in the world she understands the importance to pulling others with her along. Sankofa - reaching back (to the past) to pull others to the future. Boldly fighting for herself is fighting for others and using art to do so.

Dapper Dan’s most indelible statement of the night for me was very simply put.

My mission is to take my dream from the street corner and bring it to the world...
— Dapper Dan

In doing so, he has created a rebranded generation of the everyday man’s appreciation for elevated street style. His partnership with Gucci not only put his underground tenure on permanent hiatus, it gave voice to a culture no longer hidden from the mainstream. Dapper Dan was always in the world, the world just didn’t know it (but we did ;)