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CELEBRITY COVERGIRL: JANELLE MONAE "BREAKING THE RULES" SEPTEMBER ISSUE OF BUSTLE

CELEBRITY COVERGIRL: JANELLE MONAE "BREAKING THE RULES" SEPTEMBER ISSUE OF BUSTLE

Photo credit: Yu Tsai

Hair: Nikki Nelms

Makeup: Jessica Smalls at The Wall Group

Manicure: Nita Trottie

Styling: Alexandra Mandelkorn for The Only Agency

Art Director: Becky Brown

Bookings Manager: Guillermo Perez

Photo Editor: Clare Thigpen

Editor: Deputy Entertainment Editor Allison Piwowarski

Executive Editor, Fashion & Beauty: Kara McGrath

Director of Features and Brand Initiatives: Margaret Wheeler Johnson

BRIEF EXCERPT FROM COVER STORY BY JESSICA HOPPER:

Janelle Monáe carries herself like a person who lives by a stringent personal code. She is careful and considered and clearly holds professionalism as a virtue. Historically, this has played as Monáe being in tight control of herself and her image. Her early career was built on a persona, with the young singer identifying herself as the android Cindi Mayweather, here from the year 2719 on a mission. The role contextualized her androgyny, but in other ways kept audiences and press at a bit of a distance, and from interpreting Monáe’s robot-love songs as biographical.

Her latest album, Dirty Computer, is still as conceptual as ever, but the crucial difference is that Monáe is beckoning her listeners in, eager to make clear her motivations, releasing videos ripe with can’t-miss references and AfroFuturistic imagery. The ideologies she refutes implicitly and explicitly in songs like “Django Jane” and the album’s closer, “Americans,” — “Try my luck, stand my ground / Die in church, live in jail / Say her name, twice in hell” — underscore that Dirty Computer is being issued from the very grimpossible America of now. “The pastor speaking on the album goes, ‘This is not my America / Until same gender loving people can be who they are / This is not my America / Until black people can come home from a police stop / Without being shot in the head,’” Monáe explains. “What I’m getting at is all of the groups, all of us can really win when we take that stance, that we’re going to protect each other. That’s the way that

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Gown: David Ferreira. Earrings: Versace.

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Gown: David Ferreira. Earrings: Versace.

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Gown and necklace: Dolce & Gabbana

I come in peace, but I mean business.
— BUSTLE.COM
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Gown and necklace: Dolce & Gabbana.

Gown: Off White. Cuff: WWAKE. Wrap bracelet: Roxanne Assoulin.

MELANIN INFO SPOTLIGHT: CLICKYOHEELS HAIR!!

MELANIN INFO SPOTLIGHT: CLICKYOHEELS HAIR!!

FASHION SPOTLIGHT: 2018 MTV VMAS RED CARPET BEST DRESSED

FASHION SPOTLIGHT: 2018 MTV VMAS RED CARPET BEST DRESSED

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