When documentary photographer Chi Modu first met Tupac Shakur during a photo shoot in Atlanta in 1994, he quickly won his trust and respect. This was the beginning of a relationship that would last until Tupac’s death in September 1996.
Tupac had a profound impact on so many people, and his appeal transcends race, class, age, and geography. It’s time to celebrate his life and there’s no better way than to share these photos with the world.
Tupac felt comfortable around Modu because, in Modu’s words, “I didn’t really look at my subjects as just celebrities. I saw them as young black guys like me. It allowed me to get closer and it allowed them to be comfortable and just be who they were.” This is what allowed Modu to capture the candid, un-staged, human side of this emerging superstar rather than the commercialized persona he was encouraged to portray. Instead of seeing Tupac onstage performing, we see him at home during unguarded moments, doing those commonplace things all of us do, looking young and vulnerable.
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