Bleucalf (@bleucalf)

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Bleucalf is a Bronx based art collective that launches its quarterly art publication online. While it is very, very new, having started only in November 2019, it has gained quite a reputation and name for itself. Bleucalf prides itself on being a platform that primarily aims to create a platform for artists, entrepreneurs that scouts local talent in cities that are not usually known for such things, and thus providing these talented people with a proper platform where they can work and grow to do bigger projects. 

The people behind Bleucalf are extremely important to note too. Bleu Pablo serves as the Managing Director alongside Paula Muniz who works as the Visual Director while Nicolas Samuel serves as their partner. The involvement of these people in how Bleucalf functions are crucial. They are heavily involved in all of the major and minor decisions concerning the publication. They also all come from different worlds of art which makes Bleucalf truly unique: where Pablo comes from a film background and describes himself as an abstract artist, Muniz is both a hairstylist and a beauty photographer. This gives their work an edge and an overall well-roundedness. 

The importance of Bleucalf’s work becomes even more important in the present time that the world is currently going through. As the entire world undergoes a pandemic with added political climate and a needed human rights movement, the importance of art shines through. To a lot of people, the importance of art may not be as apparent but while social distancing, art is the most common thing that as people turn to it to distract and educate themselves with. It also serves as a very prominent outlet for people to express themselves from in forms of photographs, text, videos, and more. 

This also becomes apparent that this is a crucial time for newer artists to have stable platforms where they can come up with their ideas, develop and distribute them so that they reach their audience as well as have the resources to continue making their art. This, however, has been extremely difficult for most artists as the pandemic has taken away their existing platforms. For such artists, the existence of Bleucalf came in the form of hope which has provided a lot of such artists from inner cities this space to discover and develop their art.  

As the Bleucalf Magazine not only features visual artists like photographers and illustrators, it also covers writers and other creators in their releases making their bases bigger. Being a black-owned initiative, Bleucalf knows how important it is for disadvantaged artists to have a proper platform and that the art community seriously lacks Black and POC artists and their works in their platforms. As such artists continue to be underrated and left without platforms while they also face discrimination and disadvantages at a societal level, POC artists get affected more than other artists. This situation also raises the need for platforms and organisations that affectively help such artists and provide a permanent platform so that these voices that have been kept hidden are brought to the front.

Bleucalf has successfully been able to achieve this by being such a platform as they continue to help underground artists grow to their full potential. Bleucalf deciding their magazine to be online rather than being physical makes it more accessible to people to get their hands on, especially in the current situation brought on by the pandemic. This also makes it possible for Bleucalf’s projects and the magazine to reach a wider range of audiences for the artists featured in them.  

Having a platform which allows underground artists to have freedom of expression in whatever art form that they come up with. Bleucalf setting itself up as a platform that allows this creates a unique space in the art community for POC artists to express themselves fully. To learn more about Bleucalf and their projects, one can follow them on the handles @bleucalf, @bleupablo, and @bluu.beauty. 

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