It seems like just about everyone has a soft spot for Bart Simpson these days. Photoshopped images of Odd Future dancing with Bart and Lisa flood Tumblr, streetwear blogs seem to worship the Simpson son, and artists like Emmanuel Mauleón have also caught onto this trend as well.
Mauleón, a Brooklyn-based artist originally from Puebla, Mexico, created these dope illustrations of Black Bart Simpson as promo pieces for electropop singer Gordon Voidwell's mixtape Bad Études. In his 13 illustrations, Mauleón pays homage to both Bart Simpson and iconic black figures like Allen Iverson, André Leon Talley, Biggie, Kanye West, and more.
For Mauléon and Voidwell, "Black Bart" was done "as a vessel for larger cultural iconography" meant to stir up larger ideas on the state of the nation (note the "Trayvon Bartin" promo image). But this isn't the first time the world has seen Black Bart.
In case you didn't know, Bart Simpson was something of a cultural icon in the early '90s. Back when The Simpsons first aired on television in 1989, Bart quickly became the nation's favorite Simpson—especially among the Black population. Eventually Bart made his way onto bootlegged T-shirts that depicted him as "Black Bart Simpson," who rocked Air Jordans and spoke slang—a phenomenon known as Bartmania. Mauléon's illustrations are proof that Bartmania is still very much alive.