Introducing our new feature “Friday Top Five.”
Every week we will compile a list of the 5 most important, interesting, illuminating things for you to check out!
1. ‘African Time’
“The lightheartedly named African Time is a lovely new web series produced by the Waave + Dada artist collective. Each short episode consists of a different individual discussing their individual experiences as Africans living in the United States. There are no frills to speak of, with subjects speaking directly to the camera, usually in front of a black backdrop” – Steffan Horowitz Africa is a Country
For your viewing pleasure we have included episode #8 titled “Pierced Ears and Masculinity.” Sudanese-American and co-creator Ayman Gasmelseed explores themes of masculinity and fashion. When Gasmelseed gets his ears pierced he finds, much to his chagrin, that his parents are not only appalled, but see it as a distinctly feminine style. Gasmelseed juxtaposes this experience to the cultural tendencies of expressed Sudanese masculinity.
2. Ghariokwu Lemi
37thState published a video interview with Ghariokwu Lemi, founder of the Afro Pop Art movement and Fela’s album cover artist.
“Autodidact painter illustrator born in Lagos, Nigeria, Lemi Ghariokwu developed in the 70s an artistic sensibility that will lead him to become a witness and not least illustrator of social protest that was going to date. His career began in 1974 when the journalist Babatunde Harrison mark his drawings hanging in a bar in Lagos. Among them is a copy of the cover of Roforofo Fight, an album of Fela Kuti, the founder of Afrobeat. Impressed, he takes directly from the musician, who is captivated by the expressive line Lemi.” Go learn more about him and the Afro Pop movement here.
3. Paige Mac
Now for some music! From their website: “Paige Mac is made up of Paige MacMahon (19) on vocals, acoustic guitar and keys, Garry Van Vuuren (33) on bass, djembe and cowbell and Marcus Christiansen (26) on drums. Paige Mac was conceived in August 2011, after KZN-raised Paige decided to pack up her life and move to Cape Town in search of adventure. Having soon run out of money on her arrival to the Mother City, Paige decided to call up her (adoptive) cousin, Garry, whom she had never met. Within a few weeks the pair where jamming together in Garry’s garage and Paige Mac was born! Later, they invited drummer Giorgio Laporta in on their sessions to add that extra spice.”
They recently released an ep, and the full album is expected to drop sometime soon this year. Expect them to come up on the blog again!
4. Sara Blecher
If you have heard anything lately about movies such as Otello Burning and Surfing Soweto, Sara’s name has come up before. For the purpose of the list we are linking you to an interview about Otello Burning. Please take this as a sign to check out the rest of her work! “I was born in Johannesburg, returning to Durban just after graduating from NYU in the late 1980s. As a young idealistic student I got pretty embroiled in the township violence that was going on at the time so making a film about that period felt like a natural progression.I don’t surf sadly but I do body board. Experiencing the thrill of riding down the face of a wave, I can’t really think of a better metaphor to talk about freedom.”
“RA tells the remarkable story of the South African city’s thriving house scene. South Africans are the biggest consumers of house music in the world, and Johannesburg is the beating heart of their scene. If you’re looking for proof, there is no need to visit a nightclub. In turning on a television, listening to the radio or walking down the street, it’s clear that a 4/4 pulse is the metronome of everyday life. The city’s preferred sound—vocal-led, percussive, melodic—is largely at odds with what’s popular in other international markets; this coupled with cripplingly slow internet speeds goes someway to explaining SA’s absence from the global house music conversation.”
How’s that for your weekend?
Remember if there’s material you want covered in this feature follow us on social media networks or email it to us at projectafrica(dot)ns(at)gmail(dot)com.