Ma Rainey's Black Bottom

Ma Rainey's Black Bottom | On Air Design

Based on playwright August Wilson’s Pulitzer Prize–winning 1982 play, the film adaptation of Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom (Netflix) tells the story of a recording session with famed “Mother of the Blues” singer Ma Rainey and her band members as they muse on Black life in the days of Jim Crow.

Filmed in Pittsburgh the story primarily takes place on two sets: a factory turned recording studio and its basement band room. The careful details and minimalist production design has an intimate and authentic feel. To achieve this look we custom printed the curtains seen in Ma Rainey's commanding opening performance and the faux brick wallcoverings seen throughout. 

Art Direction: James Truesdale
Production Design: Mark Ricker

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