The creative space and expression of the arts is growing in the Northern Cape province. What was once weird and peculiar is being celebrated and used to empower individual black youths by garnering their talent and creativity for monetary value.
A local man and his partner have taken it upon themselves to help youth in the province by hosting a three-day art session, where creatives can meet and assist each other through interactive dialogues.
Tshepo Tlhalogang is the visionary behind the annual Awakening Social Sessions. Which he says were created to give local artists a platform to not only express themselves but to empower themselves through art.
“Its about giving a platform to our local artists and entrepreneurs and providing a space where the money can revolve around us, where we can be helping each other out as creatives, because what we do as creatives and entrepreneurs both of these aspects di ya tsamisana (they go hand in hand). So what we’re trying to do is create that space where both forms can gel together.”
The 30-year-old says what further inspired his mission to create the platform for the creative soul, was the lack of facilities where creatives could fully be themselves.
“There was no space for your non-mainstream artist in Kimberley. You’ll go to the usual hangout spots and find house music and hip hop, but there was no space where your creative was thriving. When you go around Kimberley and you meet all these sketchy dudes, you have no idea that this person has an actual talent its just he or she does not find it viable.
Awakening Social Sessions were first started in 2016 where former Morafe rapper Mo Molemi, headlined the stage of the musical concert. With three consecutive years in the bag, Tlhalogang added that there was still a need to celebrate local talent. Through home ground support these artists will continue to thrive.
“There are a lot of creatives who are not being celebrated and who are really doing big things in their respective industries like your Trevor Stuurmans, Thebe Magugu or Gift everyone actually, there is a lot of talent in Kimberley even those who are not as popular are doing good. There are actually a lot of artists its just that we don’t have space for them to thrive.
The event kicks off with an open dialogue session between like-minded individuals at the William Humphrey’s Art Gallery on Friday the 1st of December where patrons will preview the film iKanga by Johannesburg Poet Mutle Mothibe. Thereafter a music concert will take place on Saturday at the Mayibuye Arts Centre where Eastern Cape musician Msaki will headline the concert. The event will be rounded up with a market at the Workshop Ko Kasi in Kuruman.