Art and culture from around the continent are in the spotlight in Cape Town as the African Arts Institute’s Learn Africa Love Africa event series continues. Plans are also underway to launch similar events in Johannesburg and Durban later this year.
Already a fixed event on the Cape Town calendar, AFAI’s All Africa month-end Dance Parties kick off again on Friday 24 February. The first such event for 2012 will feature DJ Jumbo whose impressive collection of classic African dance music, many on vinyl, spans thirty years. His playlist will include music from Zimbabwe, Zambia, Malawi, Angola, Kenya, Gabon, Congo, Cameroun, Nigeria, Benin, Cote d'Ivoire and Senegal, with a taste from the African Diaspora and Cape Verde, from African guitar heroes to rolling bass lines and irresistible rhythms. Tickets are R30 at the door, from 9pm.
On Wednesday 29 February at 9am the first in a series of AFAI Coffee & Networking Mornings will introduce as guest the Artistic Director of the Royal Flemish Theatre (RFT) of Brussels, Jan Goossens. Goossens has been involved with the RFT, or Koninklike Vlaamse Schouwburg, since 1999 and took his current position two years later. He will introduce the work of the much lauded theatre and company, focusing on an ongoing international project in Congo. The event will be hosted at the AFAI offices at Union House, 25 Commercial Street. It is free of charge and with limited capacity so booking is essential. To book, AFAI 021 465 9027 or email@example.com
On Tuesday 13 March African Film Nights continue at the Labia on Orange, in collaboration with the African Film Library. The first title to be screened is Le Silence de la Foret (The Forest, 2003), directed by two filmmakers from the Central African Republic, Didier Ouenangare and Bassek ba Kobhio. The drama is centered around Gonaba, a French African intellectual who returns to his country after decades spent in Europe and finds his ideas challenged by the local community. The film is in Diaka, French and Sango with English subtitles. Tickets are R30 from the Labia on Orange, 021 424 5927 or from AFAI 021 465 9027 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Other titles to be screened in following months include the comedies Le Ballon D’Or (The Golden Ball), directed by Cheik Doukoure (Guinea, 1994) and Lalla Hobby, directed by Moumen Smihi (Morocco, 1999), a science fiction film, Les Saignantes (The Bleeders), directed by Jean-Pierre Bekolo (Cameroon, 2007), the drama Le Destin (Destiny) directed by Youssef Chahine (Egypt, 1997) plus two short films, from Burkina Faso and Mozambique.
Details on a similar series of African Film Nights to be hosted by AFAI and partners in Johannesburg from May 2012 will be announced soon. For more information and regular updates on AFAI events and projects, sign up or consult the Calendar at www.africanartsinstitute.org.za or Like us on Facebook http://www.facebook.com/africanartsinstitute
The African Arts Institute (AFAI) harnesses local expertise, resources and markets in the service of Africa’s creative sector. It aims to build regional markets for African creative goods, services and artists’ brands; and to build capacity within the African creative sector. The institute was launched in February 2009 with a two-year grant from Spier. AFAI also plays host to Arterial Network, a continent-wide network of artists, activists and creative enterprises active in the African creative sector and its contribution to development, human rights and democracy on the continent. For more information: www.afai.org.za