There is an amazing purity and innocence in these pictures. There are kids dressed in their best funky James Brown suits, holding record albums, strutting and showing off. There are crazy sunglasses, big watches, and shiny shoes. There are motorcycles and scooters brought into the studio, for posing and looking cool. Sidibé let each of his subjects create their own narrative with his many props and objects, and what emerged were pictures full of style and attitude and rock and roll infused pride. One of the things I find most intriguing about these portraits is Sidibé's use of clashing patterns, background and floor drops with bold stripes, checks, and polka dots, mixed together with the patterns in his subjects' clothing. It makes for some high octane visual stimulation. (The whole family on a motorcycle, 1962, at right.)
Collector's POV: If you are a portrait collector, Sidibé needs to be in your collection. In our opinion, his are images that you will stand the test of time well, without becoming tired.