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Source: Apeshit Courtesy Twitter

Art Historian Breaks Down Exactly Why The Works Of Art Featured In Beyoncé and Jay-Z's 'Apesh*t' Video Were Chosen

By Vanessa Nix Anthony

If you haven't seen the new video for "Apeshit," the first single from Beyonce and Jay-Z's surprise joint album, Everything Is Love, you may just be missing art history in the making. 

Or according to a recent article in Vox, at the very least, you'll be missing all the juicy cultural subtext of this black American power couple filming in the Louvre, surrounded by the iconography of classical Western art recontextualized as a joyous finger in the face of  "The Man."

The Vox piece, writer Constance Grady asserts:

  ...when Beyoncé shoots at the Louvre — taking on by turns the poses of Venus de Milo and Victory — she’s continuing an artistic project of recontextualizing classical Western art, of making herself the aesthetic object on which so much wealth and cultural capital has been spent. And coming from a black woman, that’s a radical statement.

And she's not alone in this analysis:

 In the piece, Grady interviewed University of Maryland Baltimore County Professor of Art History James Smalls who said:

  In a way, Beyoncé is exploiting/marketing her blackness as creativity — as a kind of weapon — within and against the very Eurocentric system of culture and consumption from which she has benefited.