It is with heavy hearts that AllHipHop.com informs the community of the death of Chi Modu, a pioneering photojournalist that documented the 1990’s rap culture.
Over his prestigious career, he has shot The Notorious B.I.G., Mobb Deep, Tupac Shakur, LL Cool J, Snoop Dogg, Mary J. Blige, the Wu-Tang Clan, and many more
Born in Arondizuogu, Nigeria in 1966 because of the nation’s Civil War, he and his family moved to New Jersey in 1969 and grew up during the birth of Hip-Hop.
He got his first job as a photographer, after finishing a photojournalism and documentary photography program at the International Center of Photography in New York City, at The Source.
After leaving The Source, he started the UNCATEGORIZED series to bring awareness to the music and people he loved and was honored by generations of artists, executives, and patrons.
One of his greatest contributions is the iconic cover of Mobb Deep’s The Infamous album.
Others posted tributes to talent by sharing his most legendary
Rest in Power ChiModu. 😔 pic.twitter.com/rjlINnaOjI
— Jive (@AtJive) May 22, 2021
#ChiModu. Rest In Power.
He made the visuals of hip-hop electric, magnetic and immortal with his camera. If you are of the culture, you’ve got at least one of his photos forever seared into your perspective. pic.twitter.com/UoA8oUJeg3
— Christopher Smith (@infinitewords14) May 22, 2021
I need everyone to understand that Chi Modu gave us some of THE greatest Hip Hop photos of all time. A true legend gone too soon. 🙏🏽🕊 pic.twitter.com/wqPc3FYluQ
— Chris Heezy Hurtt (@_TheHeezyLife) May 22, 2021
rest in peace chi modu — the 🐐 of this photo s### and my biggest inspiration pic.twitter.com/a6wAJQZ9c4
— 🌐 (@ripmiggs) May 22, 2021
He was the epitome of a historian and gave dignity to emcees that many looked over or gave no value to. At the core of his essence, he was one of the greatest archivists of the art form that we love.