Cultured 10 Years

Ming Smith Lenses Alicia Keys for the Musician's Second Cultured Cover

Ming Smith, When Sun Comes Out, Alicia Keys, Los Angeles, 2021. Courtesy of the artist.

Known for her candid, oftentimes in-action portraits of Black cultural figures, Ming Smith has experimented with focus and darkroom techniques such as double exposure for over the last 50 years. All of these elements come together in her cover for Cultured's 10-year anniversary celebration, the final in the artists-only series. Featuring her friend Alicia Keys, who previously fronted the magazine in 20018 with husband Kasseem Dean (Swizz Beatz), the image by Ming—the first African American female photographer to have work acquired by the Museum of Modern Art—is a full circle moment for all.