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Events to celebrate Africa Month

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The Africa Month events include “Storytelling Around the Fire” by Totto Theogene Niwenshuti, a scholar, facilitator, peace activist, multidisciplinary and international artist in residence at the Whag

The William Humphreys Art Gallery: Picture: Danie van der Lith

THE WILLIAM Humphreys Art Gallery (Whag) and Sol Plaatje University (SPU) will be hosting several events as part of the celebrations for Africa Month.

The programme kicks off today with the opening of an art exhibition of linocut prints and shadow puppets by students from the SPU, titled “A Re Keteke Africa – Let’s Celebrate Africa”.

The exhibition is a culmination of a fine art module presented by the Whag to SPU B.Ed intermediate phase first-year students.

The purpose of the module is to impart foundational knowledge of art education, as well as instil an appreciation for art that can be carried over by these future educators to the children they teach.

Practical and theory classes took place at the Whag. There were three practical projects tasked to the students, namely lino printmaking, shadow puppetry and drawing.

On completion of the projects, the module culminated in a student exhibition, where students invited their friends and family to view their work on display at the gallery.

For many students, this was the first time they were part of an art exhibition.

Along with the display of their lino prints and shadow puppets, a digital exhibition was also created to showcase the artists and their lino prints.

The short film will be uploaded to the Whag Facebook page to allow spectators from anywhere to see and appreciate the artworks.

One student, Vinolia Molusi, said that while she was initially “not into art”, the module and subsequent exhibition “opened a new world of creativity” and “pushed her own creative boundaries”.

Molusi’s lino print, titled “African Road”, and shadow puppet, a hybrid animal incorporating a cat, owl and dog, will be on display during the exhibition that opens at 10am today and will run until June 12.

The rest of the Africa Month events include “Storytelling Around the Fire” by Totto Theogene Niwenshuti, a scholar, facilitator, peace activist, multidisciplinary and international artist in residence at the Whag, on Friday, May 25 from 5.30pm at the Whag.

A “Movement and Image Theatre Workshop” by guest facilitator, Selloane Mokuku, and Niwenshuti, as part of a weekly dance programme at the Whag, will take place on Saturday, May 26, from 9.30am to 11am.

From 11am to noon on Saturday, a discussion, titled “Arts as a Liberation Tool to Articulate our Freedom Towards our Diversity”, organised in collaboration with SPU, Student Affairs Office, will be presented, also by Mokuku.

Mokuku is an experienced theatre maker, storyteller, writer and performer. She has worked with and for young people internationally. She is a ASSITEJ (South Africa) board member, Drama for Life alumni, former ShakeXperience programmes manager and a D Tech student at Tshwane University of Technology.

She currently facilitates teaching and learning at Rhodes University’s Drama Department, focusing on theatre for justice, social, cultural and economic change.

– Norma Wildenboer