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This On the Run Tour II Promo Poster References a Vintage Senegalese Film You Need to Check Out

The image of Beyoncé and Jay-Z on a motorbike is inspired by a scene from Djibril Diop Mambéty's 1973 film Touki Bouki.

If you haven't heard the news by now, Beyoncé and Jay-Z are going on tour again this summer, for the On the Run Tour II.

The couple shared the news this morning, with Beyoncé taking to Instagram to share a video announcement and two black and white promo pics of her and Jay-Z in their signature Bonnie and Clyde-inspired personas.

While we already appreciated the campaign's artistic vision, Sierra Leonian-Guinean multidisciplinary artist Ejatu Shawwho we interviewed late last year about her dreamy photo series Polypointed out another detail that makes the tour's aesthetic vision even more noteworthy.

One particular shot of Beyonce and Jay-Z riding a motorbike trimmed with a bull's skull, references a scene from the 1973 Senegalese film Touki Bouki.


This is far from the first time, the artists have looked to the continent for creative inspiration.

"Whilst doing visual research for my photography project Poly back in October, I developed a deep interest in Senegalese film," Shaw tells OkayAfrica.

"Seeing the striking images from the On the Run Tour II promo today, I was immediately reminded me of an iconic scene from the brilliant Djibril Diop Mambéty's Touki Bouki, which pictures main characters Mory and Anta journeying on Mory's motorbike which is embellished with bull horns."

The film's premise is one of love, adventure and escapism—themes that Carters also famously embody.

Shaw broke down the film's plot event further:

"Their main goal is to flee to Paris, which to them is a promised land with better opportunities and a life of glamour. The motorbike is a pretty important part of the film, present in the scene where Anta and Mory make love (another very iconic and beautiful scene), but also used as a symbol of Mory's connection to his Senegalese roots, and we later see in the movie his reluctance to move to Paris, when he leaves the ship that is supposed to take him in the promised land to go ahead and seek his bike, showing he values his heritage more."

The Wolof language film premiered at Cannes in 1973, but wasn't released in the US until 1991. Watch the trailer below. The On the Run Tour II begins June 6 in Cardiff, UK. Tickets go on sale starting March 14.

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Photo by Don Paulsen/Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images

Hugh Masekela's New York City Legacy

A look back at the South African legend's time in New York City and his enduring presence in the Big Apple.

In Questlove's magnificent documentary, Summer of Soul, he captures a forgotten part of Black American music history. But in telling the tale of the 1969 Harlem Cultural Festival, the longtime musician and first-time filmmaker also captures a part of lost South African music history too.

Among the line-up of blossoming all-stars who played the Harlem festival, from a 19-year-old Stevie Wonder to a transcendent Mavis Staples, was a young Hugh Masekela. 30 years old at the time, he was riding the wave of success that came from releasing Grazing in the Grass the year before. To watch Masekela in that moment on that stage is to see him at the height of his time in New York City — a firecracker musician who entertained his audiences as much as he educated them about the political situation in his home country of South Africa.

The legacy Masekela sowed in New York City during the 1960s remains in the walls of the venues where he played, and in the dust of those that are no longer standing. It's in the records he made in studios and jazz clubs, and on the Manhattan streets where he once posed with a giant stuffed zebra for an album cover. It's a legacy that still lives on in tangible form, too, in the Hugh Masekela Heritage Scholarship at the Manhattan School of Music.

The school is the place where Masekela received his education and met some of the people that would go on to be life-long bandmates and friends, from Larry Willis (who, as the story goes, Masekela convinced to give up opera for piano) to Morris Goldberg, Herbie Hancock and Stewart Levine, "his brother and musical compadre," as Mabusha Masekela, Bra Hugh's nephew says.

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