That One Time I Was on the Big Screen in Times Square

I can hardly believe that it actually happened. #sograteful

Today (8/21), as part of Nasdaq’s #AmplifyingBlackVoices campaign, I – along with other creatives and photographers of color – was featured on their screen in Times Square. Yes. THE Times Square. I hardly know what to do with myself. I have been alternately laughing and crying since I found out about it last night. I had been planning to do a retrospective in a few days on my experience at last year’s Afropunk (held Aug. 24+25), which is where this photo was taken, but it looks like I’ll have to get started a bit early. The caption under my image reads: Don’t forget your crown”, and I definitely feel like a queen today. Thanks to my photographer, Polly Irungu/‪@pollyirungu, my designer Jen Wilson/@jen_nollaig, and, of course, to Nasdaq for amplifying Black voices

In Ms. Irungu’s words, here’s why she chose these images:

“Not going to lie, it was really hard. It’s not everyday you get the opportunity to have your work shown on a tower in Times Square by Nasdaq. I chose these photos to showcase Black women in all of their glory. I want members of my Black Women Photographers community to remember their power, their joy, and to never forget who they are. I want people to see these photos and instantly feel the joy within them. I want these photos to serve as a reminder to never dim your light or shrink and change yourself for anything or anyone. These photos are some of my favorite photos that I return to when I need that reminder myself.”

Here’s a look at the full set of photos displayed by Ms. Irungu:

ⒸPolly Irungu
ⒸPolly Irungu
ⒸPolly Irungu
ⒸPolly Irungu
ⒸPolly Irungu

Of course, other amazing artists were featured as well: self-taught illustrator @bestofrae, and self-taught photographer/videographer @love4rico.

You can see a timelapsed  version of the full presentation on Nasdaq’s Twitter account. There is so much more I want to say, but I will save it for another post. For now, I will just reiterate my heartfelt thanks to Polly for including me, and continue floating on cloud nine.

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Body images ⒸPolly Irungu

Header image ⒸLisa Hurley

Text ⒸLisa Hurley/@happyhappyphoenix

Love Thy Roots (Africa) ring by @dopeonarrivalnyc


  1. Kathleen Hurley says:

    Congratulations, Lisa. Best choice she could have made! I’m so happy that you got this opportunity.

    1. Thanks so much, Mama! 🙂 I am still in shock, but feeling very grateful indeed.

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