High Art: Black Hollywood—and Black Hair—Got Creative for the 2019 LACMA Gala

Regina King, left, KiKi Layne, and Amandla Stenberg attend the 2019 LACMA 2019 Art + Film Gala Presented By Gucci on November 2, 2019 in Los Angeles, Calif.
Photo: Frazer Harrison (Getty Images)

In the immortal words of Darell J. Hunt, you can’t outdo black people. That truth was once again made manifest at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA) on Saturday night, as many of black Hollywood’s hottest talents converged for the museum’s annual Art + Film Gala, presented by Gucci.

While there were ample fashion statements on the step-and-repeat, most striking were the hairstyles, which put a fresh spin on formal dressing with color, braids and sculptural shapes. Without a doubt, the most stunning look of the night was KiKi Layne, who gave us an African-inspired, faux loc’d updo worthy of Zamundan royalty (Layne co-stars in the upcoming Coming 2 America), courtesy of hairstylist Larry Jarah Sims.


“I was inspired by the Gucci dress that her stylists Wayman and Micah chose for her,” Sims told Essence, shouting out Layne’s styling team [both of whom are 2019 Root 100 honorees] and makeup artist Rebekah Aladdin. “The color on KiKi’s chocolate skin felt regal and royal...I wanted to do something grand that would complement everyone’s efforts.”

“Grand” is an understatement, as Layne looked flat out regal, from head to toe.

“KiKis confidence and beauty inspires me. She’s built like a supermodel, with beautiful brown skin. Her natural textured hair is the icing on her full package,” Sims added. “Girls like KiKi don’t come around often. I’m honored to work with her. We all get to play dress up and enjoy watching her pull off our creations.”


As long as they keep playing, we’ll keep watching. But of course, Layne wasn’t the only star to watch on Saturday’s carpet; see who else showed up (and showed out) in our slideshow below.

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Maiysha Kai

Maiysha Kai is Managing Editor of The Glow Up and your average Grammy-nominated goddess next door. Minneapolis born, Chicago bred, New York built. Nuance is her superpower.