Peek into gal-dem’s UN/REST issue which illuminates our polarising times

gal-dem is back for our fourth annual print issue curated around the theme of UN/REST, split into two contrasting sections (think Beyoncé’s seminal album I Am… Sasha Fierce). With a woozy-blue cover shot by rising photography star Nwaka Okparaeke, we’re ready to take you from daydreams to nightmares and back again.

In these incessantly hellish times, most of us are embroiled in the constant battle between contrasting energies. Sleepless nights, working overtime, grassroots organising to fight the powers that be, and dancing the stress away in darkened spaces. All before burning out, passing out, dreaming, vacating to tranquil corners, and then, of course, we’ll all die. The ultimate pause.

The issue features illustrations from the likes of Rama Duwaji, commenting on radical laziness

Our newest edition features conversations with the likes of Little Simz, Tierra Whack and Paralympic record-breaker Kadeena Cox. Also included is an on-set interview with our literary luminary cover stars, Candice Carty-Williams, Mariam Khan, Naomi Shimada, Yasmin Rahman, Victoria Princewill, and Jay Bernard.

To unpack the themes, we’ve called on over 40 contributors, ranging from first-time writers to the UK media’s rising stars, and calling on the visual expertise of photographers and illustrators from around the globe.

American rapper and singer Tierra Whack shot by Lou Jasmine in an east London chip shop

Ash Sarkar writes on her vision of utopia, while Yomi Adegoke laments the relentless pressure of being a black woman in the spotlight. Pema Monaghan gives insight into the surprising politics behind the Miss Tibet beauty pageant, and the once-sceptical Ruchira Sharma reconsiders her attitude toward superstitions by speaking to diaspora children who use them to connect with their family’s culture.

This issue, designed by Rianna Osanwuta, is a testament to the constant balancing act of modern life, and an ode to the endless creativity of women and non-binary people of colour who continue to break down the barriers in media with their ideas and creativity.

Join us for the UN/REST issue launch party 12 September at Hangar in London Fields. Pre-order the magazine here

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