Say it with your chest. Here are the 19 best Juneteenth t-shirts of the weekend


Graphic tees on Juneteenth are proof that no matter the message, Black LA will always, literally, find a way to say it with their chest. Malcolm X looking down from the clouds. A proud pan-African explosion of colour. That scene from “Baby Boy” where Yvette yells at Jody. Nostalgic tributes to fallen black icons, loving memory collage style. Political declarations that point not to what we have lost, but to what we still do not have. Dedications to the party itself.

It’s a tradition: wearing a forward-facing garment as a way to tell a story about your culture, signal a shared reference, display pride in where you’re from, or honor an identity. You use these things as a means of connecting with others, hoping that someone might catch a glimpse in the crowd and think, “Dope.” T-shirt.”

Image spent the day at Leimert Park Juneteenth Festival taking stock of the best t-shirts of the day. From the personal to the witty to the serious to the campy, here’s the official ranking of our favorites.

19. Tina Edwards, 62, of Leimert Park

Tina Edwards, 62, from Leimert Park, shows off a t-shirt celebrating June 16.

Tina Edwards, 62, from Leimert Park, shows off a t-shirt celebrating June 16.

(Gabriella Angotti-Jones / For The Times)

It is the nineteenth of June. And I thought it was special for me to represent.”

18. Corisha Jack, aka DJ Cori J, 32, Compton

Corisha Jack aka DJ Cori J.

For Corisha Jack, aka DJ Cori J of Compton, it was all about nostalgia.

(Gabriella Angotti-Jones / For The Times)

“It was between this and a Tupac t-shirt from ‘Juice.’ It’s nostalgic, that’s why I chose it.”

17. Ashley and DJ Merritt, Phoenix

Ashley and DJ Merritt of Phoenix.

Ashley and DJ Merritt, from Phoenix, got matching t-shirts for the occasion. “Juneteenth is our party,” says Ashley.

(Gabriella Angotti-Jones / For The Times)

“It’s time for us to celebrate. Instead of July 4th, we can now celebrate June 16th. He lets us know that this time we were set free. Juneteenth is our holiday,” says Ashley. DJ is originally from Los Angeles and wanted to be back for Juneteenth.

16. Azondé Neré Gordon (aka Azondé the GOAT), LA

The Protect the Blunt collection by Azonde Nere Gordon (aka Azonde the Goat).

The Azondé Neré Gordon design collection has a clear message.

(Gabriella Angotti-Jones / For The Times)

“For me, it means that when I go out and roll my blunt, I don’t want it to get crushed or lost. There is a perception about stoners and what they are like. But I [smoke] productively. I was like, let me have some fun.”

15. Development, West Los Angeles

Dev, a resident of West Los Angeles, pays tribute to local heroes.

Dev, a resident of West Los Angeles, pays tribute to local heroes.

(Gabriella Angotti-Jones / For The Times)

“It was Tupac’s birthday not too long ago. me [wanted] to connect with the community and represent the community.”

14. Imani District, 25, Leimert Park

Imani Ward, 25, of Leimert Park.

Imani Ward’s shirt comes from a brand called God Is Dope.

(Gabriella Angotti-Jones / For The Times)

“It’s from this brand called god is dumb. I got this about a year ago. I felt like I could be myself here and I wanted to wear something that made me feel good.”

13. Randall Gray, 41, Beverly Hills

Randall Gray, 41, Beverly Hills.

Randall Gray: “Nipsey represented the community. He is one of the reasons we are here today in unity.”

(Gabriella Angotti-Jones / For The Times)

“This shirt is part of the culture. Nipsey represented the community. He is one of the reasons we are here today in unity.”

12. Dawnyell Dixon, 25, Compton

Dawnyell Dixon uses that scene from "Baby."

Dawnyell Dixon wears that “Baby Boy” scene.

(Gabriella Angotti-Jones / For The Times)

“I thought it would be cool to show the culture. It’s a movie we’ve all seen before.”

11. Donovan Newman, 25, Chinese

Donovan Newman's t-shirt tells us to look up.

Do you need guidance? Donovan Newman’s t-shirt tells us to look up.

(Gabriella Angotti-Jones / For The Times)

“It’s just that pan-Africanism is my s-“.

10. Desmond Gooden, 30, Long Beach

For Desmond Gooden, this shirt was all about feeling the spirit.

For Desmond Gooden, this shirt was all about feeling the spirit.

(Gabriella Angotti-Jones / For The Times)

“This is the brand of my homie, S Squad: Alone. I felt in the spirit, do you feel me? Support my ancestors who did this for us. We are about to go global. We are about to take it further than you could ever have imagined.”

9. Danielle Harvey, South Center

Danielle Harvey, from South Central Los Angeles

Danielle Harvey: “Now that they’re here gentrifying us, I thought we’d better represent the original.”

(Gabriella Angotti-Jones / For The Times)

“I grew up in South Central during the ’70s, ’80s and ’90s when it wasn’t the place to be. Now that they’re here gentrifying us, I thought we represented the original better. I am also a proud South Central homeowner. We are going to stop gentrification.”

8. Darachanel Parker, 29, Van Nuys

Darachanel Parker says so much with so little.

Darachanel Parker says so much with so little.

(Gabriella Angotti-Jones / For The Times)

“Anti Social Black Girl: It’s like, respectability politics? I don’t owe you kindness.

7. Dale and Tessa Herron, LA

Dale and Tessa Herron.

What does Leimert Park Juneteenth Festival and Blackness have in common for Dale and Tessa Herron? Vibes.

(Gabriella Angotti-Jones / For The Times)

“This is a representation of black culture. Go out and see Black LA, this is one of the few events where we can go out and express ourselves as a whole. For me, this event is a total vibe. As is Blackness,” says Dale Herron.

“We got it from a black-owned business, it’s called Blood of a Nation,” says Tessa Herron.

6. CJ Lewis, 24, Long Beach

CJ Lewis, 24, of Long Beach.

CJ Lewis chose to make a clear statement about Juneteenth.

(Gabriella Angotti-Jones / For The Times)

“Everytime that [the cops] they’re around, they make me nervous. The fact that these normal people can have so much power and sometimes when you give that power to certain people, they take advantage of it. That almost always costs us black lives.”

5. Caleb, 5, and 8-year-old twins Jacob and Grace, LA

Siblings Caleb, Jacob and Grace wear Juneteenth t-shirts that say "Free-ish since 1865."

Siblings Caleb, Jacob, and Grace wear Juneteenth T-shirts that say “Free-ish since 1865.” Because “we’ve never really been free from the oppression of our nation,” says her mother, Charity Chandler Cole.

(Gabriella Angotti-Jones / For The Times)

“They wear Juneteenth T-shirts that say ‘Free-ish since 1865’ because we’ve never really been free from the oppression of our nation,” says their mother, Charity Chandler Cole.

Gbemi Mustapha, wearing a Guilty USA t-shirt.

Gbemi Mustapha wears a Guilty USA t-shirt. “This t-shirt was made possible by seeing the change in this neighborhood, specifically,” says the brand’s co-owner, Habibi Mitchell.

(Gabriella Angotti-Jones / For The Times)

“This shirt became a reality seeing the change in this neighborhood, specifically. I lived around the corner, my grandparents have had that house for 12 years. Seeing the neighbors now compared to who they used to be, it’s like a completely different city. A completely different atmosphere.”

3. MJ, 28, south central

"This one pretty much speaks for itself." says MJ in an ITS-IN-SCOPE t-shirt.

“This one speaks for itself,” says MJ in an ITS-IN-SCOPE t-shirt.

(Gabriella Angotti-Jones / For The Times)

“We have a contemporary archive going on, YOUR-IN-REACH — having space for a study with the homies and then transmuting it into artifacts through forms. Some t-shirts, some text, some images, some audio projects. This shirt is recycling ideas, recycling materials, just to keep discovering things. This one speaks a lot for itself. Malcolm speaks for me: Be a builder, not a beggar. Really just the energy of building practice, really building from scratch.”

2. Brandon Anyanwu, 24, Inglewood

Brandon Anyanwu of Inglewood says his shirt is all about self-awareness.

Brandon Anyanwu of Inglewood says his shirt is all about self-awareness.

(Gabriella Angotti-Jones / For The Times)

“Jesus looks like us, do you understand me? We have to show our knowledge of ourselves.”

1. Zee of Zee Printing, LA

Zee from Zee Printing holds up one of his t-shirts in a sales pose.

Zee from Zee Printing says this is one of their most popular t-shirts for Juneteenth.

(Gabriella Angotti-Jones / For The Times)

“In Leimert, something like this is the most popular. It’s very controversial and it’s a statement. [People] I want to represent something or be part of a movement.”




Reference-www.latimes.com

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