Tag Archives: Run the World

Everybody wants a piece of Pieter Hugo

Pieter Hugo, 'Mallam Galadima Ahmadu with Jamis, Nigeria', 2005

Still from Beyonce's recent music video, 'Run the World'

Beyonce’s latest music video, ‘Run the World’, (directed by Francis Lawrence) owes a great debt to the work of South African photographer Pieter Hugo. Whether the singer’s hyena-handling is interpreted as an homage to the photographer or downright plagiarism is debatable, though Hugo’s leaning towards with the latter, stating in The New Yorker: “I’m sure the Hyena Men are wondering if they’re going to get paid!”.

This isn’t the first time Hugo’s work has been appropriated, with the photographer identifying over a dozen direct visual copies from his Nollywood series (recently exhibited at the IMA in Brisbane and Te Tuhi Centre for the Arts, Auckland) in Grinderman’s music video ‘Heathen Child’ (above).  But Hugo’s letting this one slide, he’s a fan.