Gabrielle Union attends a screening of ‘If Beale Street Could Talk’ at The London Hotel on January 08, 2019 in West Hollywood, California.
Photo: Rachel Luna (Getty Images)

If a picture is worth a thousand words, then an outfit can make a statement all its own. With that in mind, Gabrielle Union’s look spoke volumes when she attended a Tuesday night screening of If Beale Street Could Talk in Los Angeles, Calif.

For her moment in front of the paparazzi, Union chose an ensemble from New York-based designer Pyer Moss’ 2018 Collection 2; a tunic and skirt pairing featuring illustrations from acclaimed artist Derrick Adams.


Union’s silk tunic features a girl and boy in their “Sunday best,” a theme likely familiar to many black families and interpreted by Adams and Pyer Moss designer Kerby Jean-Raymond as “just black people doing normal things,” as Jean-Raymond explained to Vogue.


And in tandem with another highly nominated film this awards season, the collection’s illustrations were inspired by The Negro Motorist Green Book, the Jim Crow-era guide that assisted with safe travel through the Deep South. As Jean-Raymond told Vogue, “It got me starting to imagine what the African-American experience would look like without the constant threat of racism.”

The message clearly wasn’t lost on Union, as the outfit evoked the innocence of Beale Street characters Tish and Fonny. The childhood sweethearts’ tragic love story is the center of James Baldwin’s 1974 novel, now re-imagined in an award-nominated film adaptation by Barry Jenkins.


While Union hasn’t issued any formal statement on her choice of outfit for the screening, she has shouted out two of the films’ stars, Kiki Layne (Tish Rivers) and Regina King (Sharon Rivers) on social media. She captioned a post showing off her Tuesday night ensemble “Off to support the fam.”

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.

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