New chocolate range celebrates the work of Black creatives
The Makers Series is a new Casa Bosques chocolate collection – by designers Rafael de Cárdenas and Rafael Prieto, and Yardy founder DeVonn Francis – that celebrates the work of three Black artists from the American South
The Makers Series is a new limited-edition line of Casa Bosques chocolate that honours the work of historically overlooked Black creators.
The series is the initiative of creative directors Rafael de Cárdenas and Rafael Prieto (co-founder of Casa Bosques), and this first collection is a collaboration with DeVonn Francis, founder of creative studio and hospitality company Yardy.
Speaking about the project, de Cárdenas says, ‘I love working with friends and teasing out each one’s expertise; and I’m lucky to have such talented, extraordinary people in my orbit. The main goal of The Makers Series is focusing attention on overlooked and under-recognised artists and makers.’
Casa Bosques honours Black creators
The packaging of each chocolate bar will feature work by one of three Black artists from the American South – Mary L Bennett, Joe Light, and Ronald Lockett.
Bennett (born in 1942) is the only living artist of the three. She is a quilt maker working within, and adding her own unique perspective to, the rich tradition of Black female quilters in Gee’s Bend, Alabama.
Light (1934-2005) was a painter, sculptor, and assemblage artist from Memphis, Tennessee, who spent much of his twenties and thirties in prison. While there, he believed he heard the voice of God, and that spiritual experience spurred him to create bold, colourful artworks, often featuring his own devotional iconography.
Lockett (1965-1998) was a visual artist from the steel town of Bessemer, Alabama, who combined painting with three dimensional objects, such as steel wires and scrap metal, to create a unique aesthetic.
To create the chocolate itself, Francis and Prieto looked to the gastronomic traditions of the artists and Francis’ own Jamaican heritage, creating a bar infused with flavours of ginger, bay leaf, and chamomile flower.
One hundred per cent of the proceeds will go to The Okra Project, a nonprofit dedicated to bringing healthy, home-cooked meals to Black Trans individuals worldwide. Future editions of The Makers Series will support other charities.
Says Prieto, ‘It’s a very beautiful, delicious, and culturally charged chocolate. The Makers Series really highlights the importance of collaboration, experimentation, and kindness. There is a lot of emotion in the project, for us to be able to do what we love.’ §