Minor Matters Books

Lisa Leone

Bronx-born Lisa Leone infuses her frames with sound and motion, pointing to what would become her multi-faceted way of seeing through both photography and cinema.

She began her career shooting musicians Moby, Lauryn Hill, and Maxwell, as well as personalities like Debi Mazar and Spike Lee. She worked for British Vogue and for VIBE, where she was a contributing photographer and columnist for two years. While shooting stills on a music video the director asked Lisa to shoot B roll; so began her career as a cinematographer.

A few years later, Lisa began work on Stanley Kubrick’s last film, Eyes Wide Shut. Kubrick quickly became her mentor; the project consumed her next four years as she engaged with everything from set decorating and film and lighting tests to acting and directing second unit. Upon Kubrick’s death Lisa dove into a deeper study between the relationship of cinema and imagery.

She continued her cinematography with work on independent films and shows for directors; Exactly was her debut as writer, director and cinematographer. It stars Rosie Perez and Sarita Choudhury, and premiered at The Tribeca Film Festival, going on to Sundance and the London Film Festival.

Lisa is currently Vice President of Artistic Programs at the National YoungArts Foundation, where she has brought thousands of high school students into contact with their artistic inspirations and mentors such as Placido Domingo, Marisa Tomei, Debbie Allen, Bruce Davidson, and Marina Abramovic. She is presently working on a new photo series that explores the raw beauty, sensuality and essence of women.


Select contributors:

Nasir bin Olu Dara Jones, aka Nas, released his first album, Illmatic, in 1994. Since then he has gone on to sell over 25 million records worldwide. Tribeca Film is planning a simultaneous theatrical and Video On Demand release of the music-based documentary by filmmakers One9 and Erik Parker, Time Is Illmatic, this October, along with performances by Nas in select cities.

Rosie Perez made her acting debut in 1989 as a key character in Spike Lee’s Do The Right Thing; she was nominated for an Academy Award and a Golden Globe for best supporting actress in 1993 for Fearless, and has appeared in countless films, TV shows and stage productions since. She has choreographed, receiving three Emmy nominations, and directed music videos and stage shows for such performers as Bobby Brown, Diana Ross, LL Cool J and others. Her memoir Handbook for an Unpredictable Life: How I survived Sister Renata, My Crazy Mother and still came out smiling with great hair! was published in February 2014 by Random House. 

Born Fred Brathwaite, FAB 5 FREDDY was one of the first Graffiti artists to exhibit his paintings internationally.  Along with friends and contemporaries Futura 2000, Keith Haring, Jean-Michel Basquiat, and others, he was key in getting the art world to realize New York graffiti was spawning an international art movement. He directed numerous videos and commercials for artists like Queen Latifah, Nas, Snoop and companies like Pepsi. In the late 1980s MTV invited him to host YO! MTV Raps, which immediately became the highest-rated show on the channel. Fab has lectured at schools and universities around the world, written for publications including Vibe, XXL, and The New York Times Magazine and is the author of Fresh Fly Flavor, Words and Phrases of the Hip Hop Generation. He was featured in the Art In The Streets exhibition at MOCA Los Angeles in 2011.

Mare139, aka Carlos Rodriguez, is an artist who first rose to fame in the golden age of subway graffiti (1975–1985). He produced a metal "K" sculpture in 1985, which led to a series of large-scale sculptures that were true to graffiti lettering format, but folded into space. His sculptures have been exhibited internationally, and his work is seen annually in the award he designed and created for the BET/Black Entertainment Awards show. Along with Fab 5 Freddy and others, he was featured in the Art In The Streets exhibition at MOCA Los Angeles in 2011.

Debi Mazar is an acclaimed actress, mother, wife, and native New Yorker who made her feature film debut in Martin Scorsese’s Goodfellas. Her onscreen work includes films with legendary directors Woody Allen, Michael Mann, Oliver Stone and Joel Schumacher. Her most recent project is the hit Cooking Channel show Extra Virgin, where Debi and her husband, Tuscan chef Gabriele Corcos, share their passion for food and family. The couple released their first cookbook with Clarkson/Potter in May 2014.

Jorge "Popmaster Fabel" Pabon was born and raised in New York City’s Spanish Harlem, where at an early age he developed his dance and choreography career at Hip Hop jams and clubs throughout the city. Fabel gained world renown as a featured dancer in the cult classic movie Beat Street.

Fabel is an honorary member of the Electric Boogaloos, and is an adjunct professor in the Experimental Theater Wing at NYU's Tisch School of the Arts. Fabel participates in outreach programs and conferences internationally as a consultant and master teacher on Hip Hop culture. He is a co-founder of Tools Of War, a grass roots Hip Hop company covering publicity, events, promotions and consultation.