Africa in the Picture VIII

Aside from the coming of “the Cup,” I’ve had South Africa on the brain, with Miriam Makeba on heavy rotation. I’ve been listening to Mama Afrika of late with my own mama, whose taste tends to skew toward Rachmaninoff, but whenever I put on Pata Pata, she seems to go to her happy place.

Inspired by the boldly colorful paintings and beautiful stacked jewelry of the Ndebele, comes this fierce Christian Louboutin sandal … Black Rock evangelist Rob Fields hipped me to the South African band BLK JKS back in 2008 via a listening post on his blog, Bold as Love.  Their latest, Zol! drops June 8th and is available for pre-order on their site … Ndebele artist Esther Mahlangu has exhibited widely and is collected the world over.  Her Security is a Moving Target, 2006 is an indictment of Apartheid rule, with its traditional Ndebele painting  on a vintage scale model of Apartheid-era armored personnel tank.  She was, in 1991, the first female artist to paint a BMW art car.

New York designer Montgomery Harris was invited to South Africa last year to participate in workshops in conjunction with Cape Town Fashion Week.  Sharing her expertise with local artisans and craftspeople, she received as good as she gave,  coming back to the states inspired by her journey and presenting some of the works of the South African artists in her Harlem boutique … Design Indaba is more than a magazine, but a movement fashioning “a better world through creativity.”  Think TED for the world of design.

This Zulu beaded apron, circa 1940’s Nongoma region is part of the vast collection of artifacts at Galerie Ezakwantu (“things from the house of the people”) in Franschoek, South Africa …  African-American/Nigerian Artist Kehinde Wiley’s Legends of Unity, commissioned by Puma in honor of the World Cup’s first appearance on African soil in Soweto, features three prominent African Footballers,  Cameroonian Samuel Eto’o, Ivorian Emmanuel Eboué and Ghanaian John Mensah.  See the video below for the project’s genesis.

Adidas too has gotten in on the collab effort, joining forces with Cape Flats, Cape Town designer Craig Native to produce this World Cup nod under his label, Native Clothing … Photographed by Karina Lidia, handsome Ivorian footballer, Salomon Kalou is featured in the African Arenas issue of More Human magazine.


Enjoy the Cup!


3 Responses

  1. Miriam Makeba one of my favorites . Love the colors and craftwork of South Africa . especially the beading , interesting even more that choice of beads by color and type and techniques actually was a way of communication .

    It’s amazing the Indians of north america do the same technique, not so sure about the meanings , and the chinese as well .

    I was curious if you knew who did the murals for the fifa cup concert. I fell in love with them !

    thanks for a great post sharon !

  2. Thanx for showing some love toward my Country and my People 🙂

    • It’s my pleasure.

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