To say this week has been both anxiety-ridden and anticlimactic would be an understatement. After weeks of bracing ourselves for exactly the protracted outcome we have been painfully enduring since Tuesday, even with triumph likely in sight, what’s still painful is the confirmation that, in spite of all its well-meaning platitudes, promises, and performative black boxes, America is exactly what we thought it was. Nevertheless, we showed up. We participated. We rallied. We voted. We waited. We’re praying. And we’re ready.
So, excuse us if we take a break for a little levity to close this very heavy week, as well giving a nod of much due respect to our elders—and to Georgia, which is clearly the gift that keeps on giving. Like Georgia (fingers crossed), Beyoncé’s Ivy Park changed colors this season, and with it came a new round of portraits from photographer Eric Hart Jr., of his grandparents, Vickie and Junior.
We first encountered Hart and his grandparents in early May, when the 20-year-old student of NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts dressed Vickie and Junior in some of his favorite Ivy Park swag and photographed them at home in his native Macon, Ga. while quarantining.
“It really wasn’t planned out that much,” he told us at the time. “I knew I wanted them to match and I just happened to have the Ivy Park gear, so I thought it would be incredibly dope of them to wear it.”
The photographs rightfully went viral—and apparently made their way back to Beyoncé and the team at Ivy Park, since Drip 2, one of the coveted Ivy Park garment trunks arrived on Hart’s doorstep. (Excuse us while we gag with envy.) Even though Beyoncé’s newest drop came boxed with its own scenic backdrop, for the Hart family, another at-home photoshoot ensued.
What’s more? In the months since we first reported on his ingenuity, Hart’s career has blossomed, though he’s not due to graduate until 2022. Emailing with an update on his progress, he revealed that in the months since, he’s shot Flo Milli for Rolling Stone, was commissioned to shoot for Samsung, and has had work displayed in a Sprite commercial. In September, he was named one of Men’s Health’s “20-year-old Mavericks Changing America” in 2020, so honored for his creative exploration of the evolution of Black masculinity. Since we know Bey has also been in the business of boosting up-and-coming photographers, it’s exciting that she’s taking notice of Hart’s rising career as well (and both the photographer and his grandparents made Ivy Park’s social media feed).
Of course, we were harboring distant hopes of our own Drip delivery (as if), but Hart’s family is in grand company; Kerry Washington, Janet Mock, Marsai Martin, Lala Milan, Kehlani, and, of course protégés Chloe x Halle were all among those showing off their Ivy Park swag this week—as were several of the Hive’s most devoted members, according to PopSugar. But while we would’ve loved the happy distraction of a new pandemic-friendly athleisure wardrobe, you know what gift would really mean the most, right about now?
A new president.