ARS 2004 - 2 014
N YE TE
ISSUE 05: ANNIVERSARY EDITON NOV 2014
ARTS & CULTURE JOURNAL
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O B I T UA R Y
Mike Danes - It is the saddest news to have to tell you that our dear Heath passed away today peacefully with Gretwin by his side. After all the fight he put in to it, he could not overcome the stomach cancer. This is a huge loss to us all and to the Zimbabwean design industry, his talent was endless and his wit was equally appreciated. 10 years of work with Danes Design was not enough time spent with this wonderful man, who provided so much to our portfolio and our lives. We will all miss him so sadly, go well and with peace Heathie. Robert Machiri - My condolences! I am really saddened by this. I met him a few times and felt the effect of his greatness as a designer. In the end shortly before he left to return home to Zimbabwe, I felt like I could call him a friend. Warm guy who was undoubtedly passionate about his craft (which is why he left because the environment was less of a value system he was used to), he left a mark on me. Though I didn’t keep in touch after he left please allow me to send my heart especially to his close companion Gretwin. Saki Mafundikwa - REALLY sad news indeed! I taught him and he was a very talented designer. Victor Bagu - I knew Heath. My deepest condolences man. Very sad loss there, truly one of the best designers I’ve known. Baynham Goredema - Heath was a great and humble person and one of the best designers in Zimbabwe without a doubt. It was a privilege to have known him, to have been inspired by him and worked with him. My heart goes to the Manyepa family and especially Gretwin for her strength during very trying times for such a young soul. He will be missed. Below is the last work Heath sent to me to critique, as this was a common tradition we had of critiquing each others work.
OUR LAST RESPECTS
HEATH MANYEPA 1982 -2014 GRAPHIC DESIGNER
10TH Anniversary Edition
COVER ILLUSTRATION Sindiso Nyoni [www.studioriot.com]
N YE TE
ARS 2004 - 2 014
ARS 2004 - 2 014
ISSUE 05: ANNIVERSARY EDITON NOV 2014
ARTS & CULTURE JOURNAL
E D I T I O N
ANNUAL REPORT 2011 www.povo.co.za
ISSUE 03: PHOTOGRAPHY
ISSUE 04: INAUGURAL WOMEN’S EDITION OCTOBER 2014 ARTS & CULTURE JOURNAL - AFRIKA
are done,love to love and be loved. www.durbandoodles.blogspot.com Animator. Photographer. Designer. www.greedysouth.blogspot.com Zimbabwe #1 ent blog www.thepeopleshub.posterous.com We are a team of PR professionals, bloggers, multi-media creatives and event managers. www.ri0.tumblr.com A meeting of the minds of two acquaintances - A photgrapher Rosiah and a poet RuTendo DeNise (.R.). www.iamblackbird.wordpress.com The Rap Empress www.commonsenseorisit.blogspot.com This blog www.muzhingi5h23.wordpress.com - Words of a Comrades Winner. www.kgskitchen.blogspot.com The food experience and experiment that is all about enjoying food and enjoying the cooking. www.chirinda.tumblr.com www.godfreykoti.blogspot.com out of Zimbabwe. www.ngizwani.wordpress.com Our interest was to tell, in pictures, the story of the Zimbabwe Election as it unfolded. www.zimbabweinpictures.com See for yourself www.25tolyf.com The aim of the blog is to showcase the talents of African hip hop artists from all over the world. www.meetmutsa.tumblr.com I’m passionate about being involved with HIV/AIDS projects especially in Africa. www.thesovereignstate.org A Zimbabwean graphic designer and social commentator. www.justpatience.com This blog is my notebook on my experiences, thoughts and opinions on fashion and lifestyle. www.farai.com Farai has combined media, technology, and diversity during her 20-year career as an award-winning author and journalist. www.carljoshuancube. I am now a stand up comedian...what was I before? www.zuwamusic.com What began as a simple blog to house my art eventually turned into a hub where my various thoughts are documented and displayed. www.fromthesoulofaman.blogspot.com I sometimes feel that the solutions to our greatest problems rest in common sense, which doesn’t always seem so common. www.nadiabrowncow.com A Zimbabwean Princess who found her Prince and is now living happily ever after amongst the cows in the Swiss countryside.www.zambezitraveller.com destinations along the Zambezi. www.hashbrowndontfrown.com www.namelesscomms.blogspot.com - Multi-lingual poet-musician and award winning journalist working for Zimbabwe Broadcasting Corporation –ZBC as a Producer/Presenter,(DJ),Reporter and Newsreader for Radio Zimbabwe, National FM and ZTV. www.marondera-high.blogspot.com This is an experience I had visiting my old school. I hope it will move people to contribute towards rebuilding this school. www.simukacomedy.posterous.com The home of Zimbabwean Stand Up Comedy www.mysoullife.blogspot.com - if you speak about it, you should be about it. www.themail faithtalk.blogspot.com A platform where I discuss and probe issues that have to do with Faith and Religion in Zimbabwe and beyond. www.davidcoltart.com - David Coltart, MDC Senator, has been a human rights lawyer in Zimbabwe since his return to the www.zimbogeek.com Discovering all things I.T., one “kill -s HUP foo” at a time. www.thandowako.blogspot.com A writer, performing poet and arts consultant based in Zimbabwe, concerned with the human challenges in the journey of life. stimulusnetwork.blogspot.com This is a space where we invite you to share your stories in your journey to becoming an entrepreneur www.bizsetup.wordpress.com - An organization dedicated to helping entrepreneurs start-up and grow businesses the smart www.techzim.co.zw - We explore new technologies, ICT services provision, Internet products and companies. www.zimbloggers.info - If you’re a blogger submit your blog today to gain exposure to a larger audience to our Directory. www.seek-creativity. - Continuously Seeking www.radioknk.com www.opium.co.zw Dynamic company breaking into media and media-related industries. www.ethos-photographic.blogspot.com - A journey through imagery with rudo nyangulu www.indiesoulchild.wordpress.com An outlet of expression. it’s my soap box, it’s my diary. it allows me to air out all my thoughts, my anxieties, my frustrations, and my outlook on both the good and the bad, the happy and the sad. www.trevormakonyonga.blogspot.com Zmbabwean news and my views.www.muzvarebettymakoni.org An organisation that champions the rights of the girl child in Zimbabwe and world over. www.afrofutures.com Futurism as a topic has to do primarily with blacks in the Diaspora but also the whole of African consciousness. www.edithweutonga.blogspot.com A mother of two sons,a wife to a very supportive hubby,very particular about how things are done,love to love and be loved. www.durbandoodles.blogspot.com Animator. Photographer. Designer. www.greedysouth.blogspot.com Zimbabwe #1 ent blog www.thepeopleshub.posterous.com We are a team of PR professionals, bloggers, multi-media creatives and event managers. www.ri0.tumblr.com A meeting of the minds of two acquaintances - A photgrapher Rosiah and a poet RuTendo DeNise (.R.). www.iamblackbird.wordpress.com The Rap www.commonsenseorisit.blogspot.com www.muzhingi5h23.wordpress.com - Words of a Comrades Winner. www.kgskitchen.blogspot.com The food expe rience and experiment that is all about enjoying food and enjoying the cooking. www.chirinda.tumblr.com www.godfreykoti.blogspot.com by one of the most insightful cricket analysists to ever emerge out of Zimbabwe. www.ngizwani.wordpress.com Our interest was to tell, in pictures, the story of the Zimbabwe Election as it unfolded. www.zimbabweinpictures.com See for yourself www.25tolyf. The aim of the blog is to showcase the talents of African hip hop artists from all over the world. www.meetmutsa.tumblr.com I’m passionate about being involved with HIV/AIDS projects especially in Africa. www.thesovereignstate.org A Zimbabwean graphic designer and social commentator. www.justpatience.com This blog is my notebook on my experiences, thoughts and opinions on fashion and lifestyle. www.farai.com Farai has combined media, technology, and diversity during her 20-year career as an award-winning author and journalist. www.carljoshuancube.posterous.com I am now a stand up comedian...what was I before? www.zuwamusic.com drums and cast to the winds by enchanting melodies www.sirnige.com What began as a simple blog to house my art eventually turned into a hub where my various thoughts are documented and displayed. www.fromthesoulofaman.blogspot.com I sometimes feel that the solutions to our greatest problems rest in common sense, which doesn’t always seem so common. www.nadiabrowncow.com A Zimbabwean Princess who found her Prince and is now living happily ever after amongst the cows in the Swiss country www.zambezitraveller.com www.hashbrowndontfrown.com namelesscomms.blogspot.com - Multi-lingual poet-musician and award winning journalist working for Zimbabwe Broadcasting Corporation –ZBC as a Producer/Presenter,(DJ),Reporter and Newsreader for Radio Zimbabwe, National FM and ZTV. www.maron dera-high.blogspot.com This is an experience I had visiting my old school. I hope it will move people to contribute towards rebuilding this school. www.simukacomedy.posterous.com The home of Zimbabwean Stand Up Comedy www.mysoullife.blogspot.com - if you speak about it, you should be about it. www.themailfaithtalk.blogspot.com A platform where I discuss and probe issues that have to do with Faith and Religion in Zimbabwe and beyond. www.davidcoltart.com - David Coltart, MDC Senator, has been a human rights lawyer in Zimbabwe since his return to the country in 1983. www.zimbogeek.com Discovering all things I.T., one “kill -s HUP foo” at a time. www.thandowako.blogspot.com A writer, performing poet and arts consultant based in Zimbabwe, concerned with the human challenges in the journey of life. www.stimulusnetwork.blogspot.com This is a space where we invite you to share your stories in your journey to becoming an entrepreneur www.bizsetup.wordpress.com - An organization dedicated to helping entrepreneurs start-up and grow businesses the smart way. www.techzim.co.zw - We explore new technologies, ICT services provision, Internet products and companies. www.zimbloggers.info - If you’re a blogger submit your blog today to gain exposure to a larger audience to our Directory. www.seek-creativity.blogspot.com - Continuously Seeking www.radioknk.com us all closer together. www.opium.co.zw Dynamic company breaking into media and media-related industries. www.ethos-photographic.blogspot.com - A journey through imagery with rudo nyangulu www.indiesoulchild.wordpress.com An outlet of expression. it’s my soap box, it’s my diary. it allows me to air out all my thoughts, my anxieties, my frustrations, and my outlook on both the good and the bad, the happy and the sad. www.trevormakonyonga.blogspot.com Zmbabwean news and my views.www.muzvarebet An organisation that champions the rights of the girl child in Zimbabwe and world over. www.afrofutures.com Futurism as a topic has to do primarily with blacks in the Diaspora but also the whole of African consciousness. www.edithweutonga. A mother of two sons,a wife to a very supportive hubby,very particular about how things are done,love to love and be loved. www.durbandoodles.blogspot.com Animator. Photographer. Designer. www.greedysouth.blogspot.com Zimbabwe #1 www.thepeopleshub.posterous.com We are a team of PR professionals, bloggers, multi-media creatives and event managers. www.ri0.tumblr.com A meeting of the minds of two acquaintances - A photgrapher Rosiah and a poet RuTendo DeNise (.R.). www.iamblackbird.wordpress.com The Rap Empress www.commonsenseorisit.blogspot.com www.muzhingi5h23.wordpress.com - Words of a Comrades Winner. www.god www.kgskitchen.blogspot.com The food experience and experiment that is all about enjoying food and enjoying the cooking. www.chirinda.tumblr.com freykoti.blogspot.com www.ngizwani.wordpress.com Our interest was to tell, in pictures, the story of the Zimbabwe Election as it unfolded. www.zim babweinpictures.com See for yourself www.25tolyf.com The aim of the blog is to showcase the talents of African hip hop artists from all over the world. www.meetmutsa.tumblr.com I’m passionate about being involved with HIV/AIDS projects especially in Af www.thesovereignstate.org A Zimbabwean graphic designer and social commentator. www.justpatience.com This blog is my notebook on my experiences, thoughts and opinions on fashion and lifestyle. www.farai.com Farai has combined media, technology, and diversity during her 20-year career as an award-winning author and journalist. www.carljoshuancube.posterous.com I am now a stand up comedian...what was I before? www.zuwamusic.com A rare and engaging artist... poetic and political lilts www.sirnige.com What began as a simple blog to house my art eventually turned into a hub where my various thoughts are documented and displayed. www.fromthesoulofaman.blogspot.com I sometimes feel that the solutions to our greatest problems rest in common sense, which doesn’t always seem so common. www.nadiabrowncow.com A Zimbabwean Princess who found her Prince and is now living www.hashbrowndontfrown.com This is the online head-quarters of myself, TehN Diamond, an up and coming Zim happily ever after amongst the cows in the Swiss countryside.www.zambezitraveller.com www.namelesscomms.blogspot.com - Multi-lingual poet-musician and award winning journalist working for Zimbabwe Broadcasting Corporation –ZBC as a Producer/Presenter,(DJ),Reporter and Newsreader for Radio Zimbabwe, National FM and ZTV. www.marondera-high.blogspot.com This is an experience I had visiting my old school. I hope it will move people to contribute towards rebuilding this school. www.simukacomedy.posterous.com The home of Zimba bwean Stand Up Comedy www.mysoullife.blogspot.com - if you speak about it, you should be about it. www.themailfaithtalk.blogspot.com A platform where I discuss and probe issues that have to do with Faith and Religion in Zimbabwe and beyond. - David Coltart, MDC Senator, has been a human rights lawyer in Zimbabwe since his return to the country in 1983. www.zimbogeek.com Discovering all things I.T., one “kill -s HUP foo” at a time. www.thandowako.blogspot.com A writer, per forming poet and arts consultant based in Zimbabwe, concerned with the human challenges in the journey of life. www.stimulusnetwork.blogspot.com This is a space where we invite you to share your stories in your journey to becoming an entrepreneur bizsetup.wordpress.com - An organization dedicated to helping entrepreneurs start-up and grow businesses the smart way. www.techzim.co.zw - We explore new technologies, ICT services provision, Internet products and companies. www.zimbloggers.info - If you’re a blogger submit your blog today to gain exposure to a larger audience to our Directory. www.seek-creativity.blogspot.com - Continuously Seeking www.radioknk.com mation to serve as a bridge between artists and fans alike bringing us all closer together. www.opium.co.zw Dynamic company breaking into media and media-related industries. www.ethos-photographic.blogspot.com - A journey through imagery with rudo www.indiesoulchild.wordpress.com An outlet of expression. it’s my soap box, it’s my diary. it allows me to air out all my thoughts, my anxieties, my frustrations, and my outlook on both the good and the bad, the happy and the sad. www.trevormak onyonga.blogspot.com Zmbabwean news and my views.www.muzvarebettymakoni.org An organisation that champions the rights of the girl child in Zimbabwe and world over. www.afrofutures.com Futurism as a topic has to do primarily with blacks in the Diaspora but also the whole of African consciousness. www.edithweutonga.blogspot.com A mother of two sons,a wife to a very supportive hubby,very particular about how things are done,love to love and be loved. www.durbandoodles.blogspot.com Anima tor. Photographer. Designer. www.greedysouth.blogspot.com Zimbabwe #1 ent blog www.thepeopleshub.posterous.com We are a team of PR professionals, bloggers, multi-media creatives and event managers. www.ri0.tumblr.com A meeting of the minds of two acquaintances - A photgrapher Rosiah and a poet RuTendo DeNise (.R.). www.iamblackbird.wordpress.com The Rap Empress www.commonsenseorisit.blogspot.com www.muzhingi5h23.wordpress.com - Words of a Comrades Winner. www.kgskitchen.blogspot.com The food experience and experiment that is all about enjoying food and enjoying the cooking. www.chirinda.tumblr.com www.godfreykoti.blogspot.com www.ngizwani.wordpress.com Our interest was to tell, in pictures, the story of the Zimbabwe Election as it unfolded. www.zimbabweinpictures.com See for yourself www.25tolyf.com The aim of the blog is to showcase the talents of African hip hop artists from all over the world. www.meetmutsa.tumblr.com I’m pas sionate about being involved with HIV/AIDS projects especially in Africa. www.thesovereignstate.org A Zimbabwean graphic designer and social commentator. www.justpatience.com This blog is my notebook on my experiences, thoughts and opinions on fashion and lifestyle. www.farai.com Farai has combined media, technology, and diversity during her 20-year career as an award-winning author and journalist. www.carljoshuancube.posterous.com I am now a stand up comedian...what was I before? www.sirnige.com What began as a simple blog to house my art eventually turned into a hub where my various thoughts are documented and displayed. www.fromthesoulofaman.blogspot.com I sometimes feel that the solutions to our greatest problems rest in common sense, which doesn’t always seem so common. www.nadiabrowncow. A Zimbabwean Princess who found her Prince and is now living happily ever after amongst the cows in the Swiss countryside.www.zambezitraveller.com www.hashbrowndontfrown.com This is the online www.namelesscomms.blogspot.com - Multi-lingual poet-musician and award winning journalist working for Zimbabwe Broadcasting Corporation –ZBC as a Producer/Presenter,(DJ),Reporter and Newsreader for Radio Zimbabwe, National FM and ZTV. www.marondera-high.blogspot.com This is an experience I had visiting my old school. I hope it will move people to contribute towards rebuilding this www.simukacomedy.posterous.com The home of Zimbabwean Stand Up Comedy www.mysoullife.blogspot.com - if you speak about it, you should be about it. www.themailfaithtalk.blogspot.com A platform where I discuss and probe issues that have
RESILIENCE BRILLIANCE PERSEVERENCE
FEATUING TUMI AND THE VOLUME AKALA METAPHYSICS XAPA TIMOTHY MWAURA
FEATUING TINA WATYOKA BATSIRAI CHIGAMA HOPE MASIKE RUTENDO AURATHAPOET
THE POVO JOURNAL 2012 www.povo.co.zw
FEATUING MASIMBA HWATI CALVIN CHITUWUNA DAVID CHINYAMA SO PROFOUND HIFA
THE POVO JOURNAL 2013 www.povo.co.zw
ISSUE 02: ILLUSTRATION
FEATURING: Tamuka Mtengwa // Annie Mpalume // Robert Machiri // Tafadzwa Tarumbwa // Anesu Freddy // Baynham Goredema // Masimba Sasa // Khumbulani Mpofu // Rayan Chokureva // Steven Chikosi // Rudo Nyangulu // Victor Bagu
FEATURING: Boarding Dzinotizei // Charly Makwanya // Julian Mugabe // Robert Machiri // Tafadzwa Tarumbwa // Novic Hadebe // Baynham Goredema // Walter Murray // Paul Maposa
ADVERTISING A rate sheet is available on request ZIM: +263 774 168 975 / +263 77 228 3186 RSA: +27 72 600 5283 / +27 11 7603511 / +27 76 099 9770 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Limited Space Available! PUBLISHERS XEALOS DESIGN CONSULTANTS ZIM Harare: +263 774 168 975 / 773 456 797, 21 Glenara Avenue South, Eastlea, Harare RSA Johannesburg: +27 11 7603511 / +27 726005283 210 Klein Drakenstein, 31 Snipe Street, Horizon, 1724 CONTRIBUTE Add your voice to the conversation. Your opinion is valid and valuable. Send your contributions to email@example.com KEY PERSONNEL PROJECT COORDINATOR Pauline Goredema PROJECT DIRECTOR Fambai Ngirande PROJECT MANAGER Rudo Chakanyuka EDITOR Archibald Mathibela DESIGN AND LAYOUT Baynham Goredema FINANCE DIRECTOR Rodrick Longwe ACCOUNTANT Tatenda Jeche CD PRODUCER Elton Mjanana PRODUCTION MANAGER Tafadzwa Gutsa DISCLAIMER POVO JOURNAL is published by XEALOS DESIGN CONSULTANTS for POVOAfrika Trust. Opinions expressed in this publication do not necessarily reflect the views of POVOAfrika Trust, XEALOS DESIGN CONSULTANTS nor any of their funding partners. The information and views set out in this journal are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the official opinion of POVOAfrika Trust, XEALOS DESIGN CONSULTANTS nor any of their partners. Neither POVOAfrika Trust or XEALOS DESIGN CONSULTANTS nor any person acting on their behalf may be held responsible for the use which may be made of the information contained therein. Neither are they responsible for siting references within articles or credits to photos supplied, this is the responsibility of the contributor. Rights to the photographs and articles remain with the photographers and with the authors respectively. Contact them respectively for reproduction. While all care has been taken during proofing, errors and ommissions may slip through and we sincerely apologise for these.
Special thanks to our partner HIVOS for believing in this project and providing funding and technical advice on governance to a fledgling organisation like POVOAfrika Trust. 4
THE POVO JOURNAL November 2014
HECHECHAMUNORWA “CHAMU” KWENDA
MIZCHIF 1976 -2014 RAPPER
[ZIM] MASIMBA BIRIWASHE
With You, POVO turns 10
[KENYA] WANJIKU WA NGUGI
[ZIM] MASIMBA HWATI
Re Imagining our National Identities and Imagery
[SOUTH AFRIKA] LERATO MALOKA
Another Case of Lazy Creatives
[UNITED KINGDOM] JANE SHEPHERD
Making a Difference and Making a Living
[ZIM] RYAN CHOKUREVA
Afrika’s Vision Problem; The Future is Now!
Scandals of a Priest
[ZIM] TINOTENDA HONDO
[ZIM] NYASHA MUPASO
[ZIM] YEMURAI MAFI
Unleash the Artist in You
[ZIM] ELTON MJANANA
The Dreary, The Draconian & The Dues
[SOUTH AFRIKA] PHINDILE DHLAMINI
Shake the World
[ZIM] MASTON MBEWEWE
State of the Zimbabwean Creative Industry
[ZIM] DAVID ZINYAMA
[ZIM] RUTENDO MUTSAMWIRA
A Social Media Journey
[ZIM] NJABU MBONO
Publishing on a Shoestring
[ZIM] RUMBIDZAI DUBE
Is Satire The New Protest?
Zimbabwe on Behance
Afrikan comics: What Lies Beyond the Spear and Animal Hide
PHOTOGRAPHY 07 Tatenda Chidora 29 Tamuka Mtengwa 45 Ralph Chikambi 49 David Zinyama 63 Khumbulani Mpofu 69 Steven Chikosi
[ZIM] EUGENE MAPONDERA
The Ugly One
[ZIM] VALERIE SHAMU
[ZAMBIA] EVELYN ROE
[ZIM] HOPE MASIKE
[JAMAICA] DR JAHLANI NIAAH
[ZIM] LUKE BROWN
Is Tourism in Zimbabwe Recovering?
[GERMANY] JENNIFER SCHUCHMANN
[ZIM] RAYMOND MUWANIRI
Need for Change of the Zimbabwean Mind-set
[ZIM] TIGERE CHIRIGA
[ZIM] PLOT MHAKO
Re-tracing the Frenzy of Zimdancehall
[ZIM] TENDEKAI ‘MADZITATEGURU’ TATI
Bete Size Ten
[SOUTH AFRIKA] MARCIA TLADI
Bringing Down the Walls
[ZIM] ISIAH SUWARI
[ZIM] RUVIMBO MOYO
100 days 100 buildings
[ZIM] ZOLA NDLOVU
10 Warning Signs That You are a ‘90s Kid
[ZIM] NQOBIZITHA MLILO
Afrikan Animation, the Future Scrolls
The Floating Mug
Prophets and the Saving Gospel
[ZIM] PAUL BRICKHILL
[ZIM] MICHELE FORTMANN
What’s in a Photo?
[ZIM] TAKUDZWA GEZI
They Never Come Back
In Memory of ...
CALL FOR CONTRIBUTIONS
What are you waiting for? 10TH Anniversary Edition
PAINTING 11 Cosmas Shiridzinomwa 31 Cecile Murray-Louw 47 Patrick Rapai 67 Thomas Mwasangwale ILLUSTRATION 06 Farai Wallace 15 Tafadzwa Tarumbwa 17 Jane Shepherd 35 Jarrod Pretorius 55 Nokwanda Themba [SOUTH AFRIKA] 73 Paul Maposa 75 Cathrine Makaya 79 Eugene Mapondera 89 Innocent Dembetembe DESIGN 21 Michael Danes 43 Baynham Goredema 59 Rufaro Dhliwayo 68 Babusi Nyoni FASHION 25 Paidamoyo Chideya 61 Sikhanyisiwe Sebata
With You, POVO turns 10 MASIMBA BIRIWASHE WRITER @ChiefKMasimba
h i s ye a r we a re celebrating 10 years since the inception of the POVO journal, and we have decided to kick it up a notch. As we contemplated 10 years of building this movement, the big question was if you want to honour ten years of putting something together, where exactly do you start? First things first, tens years is a big thing even though in retrospect, it appears like a flash. A lot has happened indeed. Too much in fact. Just to get some ideas on how to celebrate this momentous occasion, we looked at how they do it in marriage. Apparently, tin is the traditional material for the 10th wedding anniversary. Blue sapphire, aluminium and diamond are the alternate modern jewellery material for the 10th anniversary. Interesting.
To stay on the safe side, we decided to stick to what we do and have always done best: building a great conversation. That’s our mission. We love gathering ideas to spark great conversation. At our heart, we are really about one thing: YOU. You are what makes POVO great. We seek to surprise and amuse, provoke and enlighten, and inform and inspire at the confluence of style and substance. Every time we’ve put together an issue of the POVO journal, the guiding ethos has always been reaching out to the next horizon with stories and ideas that intrigue us, and hopefully you.
This issue is what you’ve come to expect in and love POVO magazine: we’ve gems carefully selected for you. This 10-year anniversary issue is a celebratory one in which we riff on the
As is our culture, we asked our contributors to go on a wild ride about ideas they’re passionate about. And what we got was absolutely mind-blowing. 6
THE POVO JOURNAL November 2014
kinds of ideas and imagery that have been the lifeblood of the POVO journal. As is our culture, we asked our contributors to go on a wild ride about ideas they’re passionate about. And what we got was absolutely mind-blowing. We’ve a piece about mothers that are being turned into factories for babies, one about re-imagining our heroes, one about the meaning of being indigenous. We broadened our lenses a bit as well and asked contributors from outside Zimbabwe to share their single, most important ideas.
The mishmash of ideas in this issue will certainly take you to new heights. Take a quick look at 10 Warning Signs That You are a ‘90s Kid, just to make sure that you are compatibles with the new times. We certainly hope that the remarkable people and extraordinary ideas featured in the journal will inspire you to see, feel and do better as well as pave the way for progress. As always, and hopefully for a long time going forward, we hope you enjoy the POVO journal. Together, we can celebrate great ideas and images, and of course, the next ten years.
10TH Anniversary Edition
Conceived in 2004, POVO (People Of Valid Opinions) is an arts and culture m ove m e nt fo u n d e d by Baynham Goredema. 2014 marks the 10th anniversary of the brand and concept. To commemorate this milestone POVO has lined up a series of activities which aim to raise awareness about the diversity and richness of arts and culture in Zimbabwe whilst being a vehicle to stimulate broader public awareness by stakeholders such as government and the private sector, of the important role played by the arts and culture sector in stimulating development.
Baynham & his wife Pauline
the stories of everyday people whose unique experiences converge as a body of valid personal chronicles. In order to consolidate the movement, POVO has partnered with Magamba Network in their SHOKO Festival initiative, Jibilika Dance Trust and TedxHarare who already have an indelible footprint in the arts industry.
The primary purpose of the POVO brand is to serve as a platform for Zimbabweans to express themselves freely on all matters relating to the country’s arts and culture. POVO offers an alternative voice insulated from the stifling pressures that mainstream media often has to contend with. In the process we also aim to create a platform for continuous and vigorous discourse on issues affecting Afrikan arts and culture in general.
The POVO journal is the first project overseen by the POVOAfrika Trust which was registered in 2014. The mission of POVOAfrika is to “Foster the arts, culture and sustainability for social development.” We have registered to formalise the movement and put into action ideas we have been discussing over the years. We invite other organisations and individuals to partner with POVOAfrika Trust to fullfil this mission.
We are promoting the arts and culture of Zimbabwe through
ANNUAL REPORT ARS 2004 - 2 014
ARS 2004 - 2 014
E D I T I O N
2014 was a defining year for the Journal. Its the year we are celebrating 10 years since the first Journal, which was a 36 page, A6 booklet. After we had secured the paper and a printer had offered to print that’s when the economy took a down turn and the printer pulled out and we had to shelf the project in the year of inception. It was resurrected again in 2009 as an online magazine then. In 2011 we published the first printed journal although we only did a limited run which was distributed to stakeholders and contributors only. This year we managed to secure funding from HIVOS to publish larger quantities of the Journal and also launched the inaugural Women’s issue which was the brain child of Rudo Chakanyuka. Special mention goes out to Olga Muhwati for her role in helping us get funding. With the lacing of the Women’s edition it will be a permanent edition, so the Journal will now published twice a year! ISSUE 05: ANNIVERSARY EDITON NOV 2014
ISSUE 04: INAUGURAL WOMEN’S EDITION
ARTS & CULTURE JOURNAL
OCTOBER 2014 ARTS & CULTURE JOURNAL - AFRIKA
CD As part of the launch of the Women’s issue we produced a CD compilation of tracks by women only. It included songs spoken word and a motivational speech. Featured on the CD are the following artists, AuraThePoet, Batsirayi Chigama, Breezey, Black Bird, Cathrine Makaya, Clare, Edith WeUtonga, Hope Masike, Linda Gabriel, Pauline, Raven, Tererai, Wadzanai Chiuriri.
Our social scene was more active this year with Youtube and Twitter being the most active fronts. We reached 100 uploaded videos of original content from Zimbabwe with the Upmost spoken word piece ‘Intuition’ being the milestone video (http://bit.ly/1uL4tCZ). We also reached 2000 followers on Twitter. 60% of our contributors are on twitter. We have 250 likes on our Facebook page. The PDF version published on Issuu.com has the following reads per issue 2011 (http://bit.ly/vvduKk) = 94 reads, 2012 = 309 reads (http://bit.ly/1eziD47) and 2013 = 524 reads (http://bit.ly/1bP0kHz).
WEBSITE We reached our 100th Contributor this year, and will breach the 150 milestone by the time this journal goes to print. Generally because of the commemoration project there have been less updates on the website hence affecting traffic flows.
T-SHIRTS As usual each year we release a new design for the POVO range of patriotic apparel. This year we did two separate designs with a new summer cut as well. We only produced 200 T-shirts to date. We will launch a special edition for the 10th Anniversary to be released towards the end of the year. For the first time we also produced some caps which were given out as a free gift with each T-shirt.
CONTRIBUTORS Cathrine Makaya from Zimbabwe and Nomwanda Themba from South Afrika, both 19 years old are our youngest contributors ever. Coincidently Cathrine Makaya also happens to be Miss Zimbabwe 2014 and we wish her the best at the world finals. After complaints that there was gender imbalance in the contributors of previous editions we decided to have a Special Women’s issue featuring only women contributors. With that we also opened both journals to contributors from other countries as well, with contributors from Ethiopia, Jamaica, South Afrika, Germany, UK and Zambia.
HIFA 2014 HIFA is always a highlight of the year both for networking and marketing the brand. Once seen as an elitist festival the people of Zimbabwe are slowly making the festival their own, a development that may not go down well with some of the festival goers, but inevitable nonetheless. Another interesting development is the interest by black South Afrikans who are making the trek to Zimbabwe in their numbers to perform and to experience the culture and enjoy the festivities. This year’s festival did not go without drama with Freshly Ground being turned back at the airport. A play ‘Lovers in Time’, depicting Nehanda and Kaguvi as trans gender. Being the first to protest against colonial rule in Zimbabwe – hence national heroes and icons – it was performed amidst protests. There are other art and cultural activities riding on the buzz provided by the festival, First Floor Gallery held exhibitions and discussions. The National Gallery of Zimbabwe held its inaugural Design exhibition titled DesignInZimbabwe, which raised a bit of controversy for portraits of the president done in a Pop Art style. As usual we took lots of pictures, covering mainly events in the Harare Gardens precinct because of limited manpower.
THE POVO JOURNAL November 2014
NEWSLETTER The POVO Newsletter is published regularly to keep subscribers informed of new developments and new content on the website. The subscriber base is almost 2500 who receive the newsletter.
10TH Anniversary Edition
Contracting WANJIKU WA NGUGI
few years ago I followed with trepidation the story of a Kenyan evangelist who claimed to have created miracle babies through prayer in the UK. He later lost a battle against extradition to Kenya to face five charges of kidnapping. His is not an isolated incidence. The media is awash with stories about child trafficking, and babies, some as young as weeks old being sold to the highest bidder. There is also the booming baby factories, where, in some cases women are held captive, raped and released after they have given birth to the babies who make their way to the seemingly insatiable baby market. But it was when I was writing The Fall of Saints, a novel about a woman who finds her agency through dissecting the murky world of baby trafficking, that I found just how widespread trafficking of babies had become. Now there is a new frontier of the baby business. Surrogacy. It seems so simple. A couple desperate to have a child. A poor woman desperate to make ends meet. A middleman. A signed contract. Everybody wins. But not so fast. In an emerging new story recently, an Australian couple took one healthy twin born to a surrogate Thai woman and left her with the other twin born with Down Syndrome. Enter into the world of the morally questionable surrogacy.
Why we need our governments to be more vigilant. But before we start debating who did what, where and how, perhaps it’s wise to consider how we arrived at this place, where we feel it’s okay to transform a biological function of a woman´s body into a commercial contract? I am not against surrogacy but mostly worried about the moral and ethical questions in the industry. It’s indeed an industry. Supply and demand. There are buyers. Sellers. Middlemen. Advertisements. Recruitment. Interviews. Agents. Brokers. And like any industry it has created an immense opportunity for a black market. In Nigeria, police discovered what they referred to as a baby factory for 32 teenage girls some of whom were allegedly being held against their will, raped and their newborns sold on the black market. In another case it was reported that five Albanians had been arrested
flowers, only perhaps the laws for transporting food from country A to B are probably more stringent. It should be alarming to think that children can be literally manufactured for exportation. It reeks of days when youthful men and women were kidnapped assembled and then sold off into slavery. Now babies are the ones being assembled in the wombs of often poor and low income women for the gratification of the needs of the rich. That we live in a world where poor women are disposable for a price. There is an argument to be made that the exchange of currency indicates that no coercion was in place, therefore a legit transaction. But given the economic conditions of most of these women in surrogacy arrangements, can we really argue that they have a choice? I would instead argue that these kinds of transactions highlight troubling questions about the relationship between choice and global inequality.
It should be troubling to anyone to buy the womb of an economically and socially vulnerable woman. We ought to be concerned about vulnerable young girls, as well as the babies born in these arrangements.
near the Greek-Albanian border for the alleged sale of eight Roma infants. Somewhere in our psyche we have made it okay to trade in babies. As we do with corn and
THE POVO JOURNAL November 2014
“…Not in my entire life do I want my daughter to be a surrogate,” says one surrogate mother in India. In yet another case an Indian mother weeps for her dead daughter, who convulsed and died during her last stages
of pregnancy as a surrogate. In this case one wonders whose responsibility her death is, amongst all the players, who include the clinic as well as the contracting parents of the baby who survived. This leads us to examine what it will mean to women´s reproductive rights if embryos become legally defined. In cases of surrogacy it could mean that the fetus belongs to the client, and not the woman it is dependent on. That the contracted womb of the woman does not belong to her, reducing her to a mere incubator. There are other questions too, pertaining to genetics, and if the baby has a right to access the birth mother´s genetic history. How about the recipient parents, other than dishing out cash, should they take responsibility of knowing the history of the babies they buy? Or does one´s need to be a parent supersede all moral and ethical questions. It should be troubling to anyone to buy the womb of an economically and socially vulnerable woman. We ought to be concerned about vulnerable young girls, as well as the babies born in these arrangements. From the cases we have witnessed so far it´s quite clear that in countries with deep socio economic disparities the possibility of abuse is very apparent. But most importantly we need to address the inequalities that make it possible for a woman to contract her womb to make ends meet.
10TH Anniversary Edition
Re Imagining our National Identities and Imagery MASIMBA HWATI FINE ARTIST @MasimbaHwati
very society is shaped by visual history and c u l t u re . T h e s e l f perception and esteem of Afrikan societies has been shaped by colonial historical and contemporary images that are constantly being portrayed and projected at them either by design or by default. It has been argued that Afrika has a deficiency of heroes .There is a dearth of knowledge of heroic and iconic figures in pan Afrikan cultures and if this knowledge exists at all, it is shaped and narrated by outsiders . How many pictures of our heroes did we make, project or imagine? Zimbabwean liberation struggle is punctuated by mug shots of our subjugated defeated and humiliated heroes.
other cultures and races. Today we allow the Eastern nations to exploit our human and natural resources in such blatant ignorance. Is this lack of ownership and self value connected with the damaged perception of ourselves that has its roots in the way we present and project our heroes?
We need to counter the negative images of our heroes and icons who are still being presented to us and the rest of the world in their defeated and subjugated state.
How is it that we still publicize, celebrate and identify ourselves with these images? What is the psychological taxation of these images on the Zimbabwean psyche? How do these images shape our self perception and esteem? And how does this psychological phenomenon reflect on our economy and our Diplomatic relations with
Who is telling the Zimbabwe story? WATCH HERE http://bit.ly/1uOsMQw 12
THE POVO JOURNAL November 2014
Images of heroes are the standard and cultural touchstone of every society. Let’s talk of The Duke of Wellington a hero of the battle of waterloo, Benjamin Franklin the American Founding father, Joan of Arc, Alexander the great of Greece, Saint George the dragon slayer. These heroes are Cultural assets whose purpose is to inspire courage, self value and success driven norms in any society. Their images tell the same story. The only Images of our own Zimbabwean heroes from the first Chimurenga and the period before that are images that were propagated by our former colonisers by enterprising explorers who sought to present an Eldorado creating curious perceptions that aided in the colonisation of most parts of Afrika. An image has a lot to do with the intention of the artist or the photographer than it does with the subject matter presented.
How many images of our heroes do we claim to have creative ownership over? We are struggling under the weight of colonially engineered images of our heroes and ourselves. Where is the contemporary Zimbabwean artist? We can’t leave things to chance anymore. Our artists are too busy appeasing perverted appetites of rich elites who refuse to budge from their inherited image of the Afrikan. Where are cultural Institutions to commission and redress change? ZimAsset depends on our image which apparently is informed by our heroes images. We need new Images of Mbuya Nehanda, Sekuru Kaguvi, Chief Mapondera. We need to counter the negative images of our heroes and icons who are still being presented to us and the rest of the world in their defeated and subjugated state. As a visual artist it’s embarrassing for me to continue to see those Images being presented in public without being challenged. Ephebesim is the celebration of Afrikan virility, youth and conquest in art. I am challenging all Zimbabwean and Afrikan artists to take up this challenge to redress this, lets design the future. History is as much as design as it is factual.
FAIR FASHION BRACELETS Look good with our colorful bracelets Feel good by joining our fair fashion revolution Do good by empowering our female crafters
C R E AT I V I T Y
Another Case of Lazy Creatives what made the advertising industry thrive – thinking, creativity and solutions, which this campaign lacks in all these aspects.
LERATO MALOKA EDITORIAL DIRECTOR @missmaloka
adness is trending around the world, from planes disappearing to Ebola epidemic and now this… #WearADoek Campaign! The South Afrikan department of arts and culture have created the “wear a doek” campaign, urging all South Afrikan women to wear a doek on Fridays and upload their selfie in solidarity for women’s month last August. Doek is colloquial for head wrap, the beautiful head scarf richly connected to Afrikan history since the 1700s. Slave women featured in a 1707 painting created by a Danish painter, Dirk Valkenburg wearing head wraps, however, it is believed that Afrikan cultures have been using head wraps before the days of slavery, for men to show off their wealth and the level of their social status and for women to flaunt their prosperity and spirituality. In the South Afrikan context, doeks have also been synonymous with apartheid, maids being made to wear doeks by their white employees. Some ethnic cultures require wives to wear doeks as a sign of respect or as feminists would
put it, as a sign of subservience to their husbands. I love head wraps, I wear one to bed every night and any other day as a fashion and neopolitical statement. I associate my colourful crown with femininity, black consciousness and regality. The feminist in me desperately wants to completely shred this ill-conceived campaign for the obvious patriarchal stereotypes. However my contention is with the ‘creative’ team that brainstormed around this concept and confidently rolled it out. I’m assuming the department of arts and culture tendered out the services to a creative agency, as per state norm. I will overlook the hand that approved the roll out of the campaign, we all know the short-comings of our Afrikan politicians. How on earth does a creative person present a feeble half-hearted national campaign for such a significant month? I am perplexed that people sat together, brainstormed for a few weeks and rested upon this colossal failed attempt at copying the “bring back our girls” campaign. Evident the laziness that has over taken the creative industry, we have become so engulfed in making money that we’ve forgotten
THE POVO JOURNAL November 2014
#Bring Back Our Girls although the girls have not been recovered, the campaign was successful in fulfilling its intention of arousing awareness and forcing action by the Nigerian government. The call to action and its display revealed the power of social media used prudently, a simple idea well executed. #Wear A Doek on the other hand flounders on many levels. Firstly, how does wearing a doek on Fridays and uploading a selfie help the
In the South Afrikan context, doeks have also been synonymous with apartheid, maids being made to wear doeks by their white employees. plight of women? How is that supposedly showing support for women? What of the issue that doeks are still seen as archaic and not appropriate for the refined woman in the boardroom? The campaign does not address that at all – we are simply required to wear our head wrap on four Fridays in August and take a selfie. How simplistic! What about white people and men – where do they fit in this doek situation? A white woman, in response to the campaign was quoted
saying, “As a white woman I would be very scared to put on a doek lest I be called racist. Very fine line between being seen as to identifying with a domestic worker and making fun of one.” The lazy creative people o v e r l o o ke d t h e h o l i s t i c implication of rolling out this campaign, completely ignoring the ‘target audience analysis’ profiling. Perhaps the target audience was black women and men only – so much for a national campaign intended at all South Afrikans! I would have preferred to see more education and information on the history of head wraps, its significance to our Afrikan heritage. The political and historical symbolisms of a head wrap were ignored, let alone the racial disparity. I would have preferred a solutions based campaign, one that looks at the challenges faced by women in the creative industry. A campaign that considered celebrating women in the arts, one that presented an opportunity to engage all sexes and races. A campaign that had people in mind, and cared less about scoring likes on social media. I am tired of lazy creatives giving other painstaking creative people a bad name. The concept and execution does nothing for women or showcase how progressive the department of arts and culture is. It paints a gloomy picture of Afrikan creative skill. This campaign has left me screaming “Bring back solutions based creatives!”
10TH Anniversary Edition
Making a Difference and Making a Living JANE SHEPHERD GRAPHIC DESIGNER
ight years ago I left the marketing company where I was working as a design sausage machine – cranking out fliers and adverts for clients and projects that meant nothing to me – to work for myself. It was a leap of faith as I had no clients lined up. I was just desperate to do something more fulfilling. Politically, I came of age in 1980s Britain, the Thatcher era; I marched with striking miners, joined Friends of the Earth and bought a Free Nelson Mandela mug. I vowed I would always do a job I loved and ensure it was at something meaningful. In truth, I spent much of the decade working in a pub. I had no idea how to translate my ideals into a salary.
Politically, I came of age in 1980s Britain, the Thatcher era; I marched with striking miners, joined Friends of the Earth and bought a Free Nelson Mandela mug. generous of him. It’s a dreary looking thing – a broadsheet that opens on the wrong side and upside down. But, I was very proud of it and from then on I knew what I wanted to do. In 1964 Ken Garland published the First Things First Manifesto – a call to visual communicators to put their skills to better use. It was signed by 21 fellow creatives. The Manifesto was revisited in 2000, and the updated version republished in Eye magazine with 33 new signatories. “There are pursuits more worthy of our problemsolving skills. Unprecedented environmental, social and cultural crises demand our
Politically, I came of age in 1980s Britain, the Thatcher era; I marched with striking miners, joined Friends of the Earth and bought a Free Nelson Mandela mug. I vowed I would always do a job I loved and ensure it was at something meaningful.
I had never heard of graphic design until I volunteered to help the British designer Ken Garland compile an exhibition on the Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament. He let me design the catalogue, which, looking back, seemed very
attention. Many cultural interventions, social marketing campaigns, books, magazines, exhibitions, educational tools, television programmes, films, charitable causes and other information design projects urgently
THE POVO JOURNAL November 2014
require our expertise and help.” (Extract from the First Things First Manifesto 2000) It is a noble call to action, but neglects to mention the empowering and democratic dimension of being involved in issues that directly affect us. The activist slogan, ‘Nothing about us, without us’ reminds us that we have an obligation and a right to direct participation. In reality, it’s less easy to practice. Many of the jobs in the design profession are in advertising and marketing. Taking on unpaid work can be unsustainable and really, skills and experience should be recompensed, however worthy the cause. So, how do you make a living from making a difference? The answer would probably take up a book. In fact there is one – The Design Activist’s Handbook – full of ideas and tools for getting started as a socially conscious designer. But, for many of us, the process is incremental, stumbling along, trying this and that, following the trajectory made by our life experiences. This was certainly my story. I was a window dresser until I went to Zimbabwe in 1990; I fell into teaching, loved it and taught myself graphic design – literally one step ahead of my students. Chaz Maviyane-
Davies kindly acted as a mentor during my first few terms at the Polytechnic, and I cut my design teeth on projects that had a cultural or social change component; illustrations for one of the first AIDS awareness campaigns, a logo for Thomas Mapfumo, T-shirt designs for the anti-apartheid movement. It was 12 enriching and rewarding years. It made my return to the UK and the sausage machine job, with its adverts for the Royal Navy and product catalogues for luxury swimming pools, so much more painful. When I finally walked out of the marketing job, I made a huge personal decision. I would align myself to the one global issue that had directly affected my life. In doing this, I would use my skills as a designer and as an ‘expert’, through my own lived experience, to advocate for a better world. Having been diagnosed with HIV in 1990, I had always been open with colleagues and those close to me, but stigma and discrimination meant I was less able to be so in a professional capacity. Either I followed a career as a woman living openly with HIV within the ‘HIV bubble’, where I could be guaranteed some support and safety, or I got on with something unrelated and kept quiet. From my first meeting with Ken Garland, I really wanted to be a Graphic Designer and in a socially useful arena. It took a long time to be able to bring the two together.
» ILLUSTRATION 10TH Anniversary Edition
Afrika’s vision problem The Future is Now! RYAN CHOKUREVA DESIGNER & MAKER OF THINGS @siryane
ust listening and watching everyday Afrika, you struggle to find or settle on an identity, a direction we are headed. There is a depressing sense of stagnation, a frustration of potential that leaves nothing but the heaviness of hope. That almost always promises, that never comes true and more and more it’s spilling out into the open with rather disturbing side effects. We seem to have this idea of a better, brighter Afrika that is as mysterious as are the plans to get us there. We are perpetually waiting to exhale. It starts with our leaders. Afrika has a leadership that has no idea of the Afrika it wants to create. We have no plan. It’s not enough to have good intentions or good ideas that do not come with a well thought-out process. We are too caught up in thinking that as long as we are prisoners in our own jails that it constitutes some kind of freedom. That somehow it is better to endure suffering as
long as we are the architects of it. Nothing could be worse because it gives us a false sense of progress. A vision is a vision only when we have a plan, when we have a process, anything else is and shouldn’t be good enough. If you are a leader who implements good ideas badly you are a bad leader. There is no other way around that. Good intentions are not enough. And yet we are meant
leadership’s many speeches. Rushing to implement first world infrastructure does not address our identity issues. Who are we? What do we want, where we are going? What are we going to be 50yrs from now? What tools and skills do we need to be able to live in that world? What are the benefits and dangers of our actions now towards that future? It’s like we are stuck on some weird movie
We are stuck in a non-rewarding post-colonial basking period that’s not ending. The wars are over, those victories stale and the currency of those wins well and truly eroded. to applaud our leaders for having good intentions and for trying, even when that makes no difference to the reality of our lives. That lack of leadership is why we seem to be struggling with knowing and believing in an Afrikan future. You just do not see it. Not on TV, not in magazines and you don’t hear it out of the mouths of our
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scene that continuously loops. War, famine, corruption, rigged elections and once in a while an overelaborate centerpiece somewhere we use as a symbol for progress. We’ve taken too much time talking about old glories, celebrating battles already won, freedoms already given, surely it’s time to move on. We can’t win the same prize twice. We seem to be so
disoriented that we confuse moving in circles as being better than standing still. We are somehow moving forward without going anywhere and we are oblivious to it. We are stuck in a non-rewarding postcolonial basking period that’s not ending. The wars are over, those victories stale and the currency of those wins well and truly eroded. We need to fight new wars on completely new frontiers while avoiding short sighted exercises meant to thwart dissent more than they are about building a solid vision. We need leadership that is willing to fight global systems, take on and change relationships with corporate superpowers that place ceilings on our development and progress. That is not going to be as easy as labelling them evil and name calling, it means reinventing our processes and policies to a point that we gain respect and a foothold for our opinions. It means having a vision that others are willing to invest in not because we have a sorry past, but because we have clear blue prints for the future. We need leadership that is willing to take on their own
shortcomings, not cover them up so they can deal with global and continental problems. A leadership that can imagine the future and not continuously fight the past. If our people have land, and mines and no trading partners then what? How is that progress part of a bigger vision or plan? The idea that taking back what’s ours will somehow solve our lack of vision and due process is dangerous and limiting, often leading to waste. The problem with spending so much time fighting wars we should have settled 20 – 40yrs ago is that they keep us from planning 20-40yrs into the future, that means we are always going to be on the back foot and catching up. This lack of vision is not just political it is becoming cultural as well. Let’s face it we are no longer a young Afrika. We are struggling to mature. We have been coming of age for too long. As a young Afrikan this is THE challenge; helping to put a face to the Afrika of the future. Can we close our eyes and imagine it? Do we create enough of that vision for people to buy into? Do we stimulate a desire for it? Surely if we want people to move towards a certain destination then it is our job to convince them that it is worth going there. It is worth building our selfconfidence to the point that we just do not think about and dream of but actually build and implement. The problem is that home grown solutions and ideas across the board have hardly ever worked, so we are struggling to be motivated and vigilant for our own causes. One tweet I saw, read “Afrika is predominantly black, but you can’t say that judging by the magazine covers on the stand” That is a small sample of our problem, its more complex than
that as it is not just about the proportional representation of colour. We have an image p ro j e c t i o n p ro b l e m , a n identity problem, and vision problem? So we take everyone’s everything and make it our own. We try to cover for what we don’t have by making what others have our own. We are too willing to be thought for, led and dictated to what our change is and can be. We are lacking so much of our own identity that we are willing for others to name us, define us so we can approve. If you watch or listen to the Afrikan narrative you struggle to see where we are going. There is too much focus on where we were, and where we are. No one is willing to try and define a future, a path forward. What values do we want? What images, stories of our self-do we want to tell? A good portion of western films envision their people as bigger and better. Taking on not just the world but other planets. Their armies save the world, cure our diseases. On the other hand what are our stories? What do they say about us and our ambitions? How do they reflect who we are as a people? Even our constitutions are often handled with the same lack of vision and identity. We copy what everyone else has done, stamp progress on it and claim to be moving forward. The question is to where? Whether its entertainment or informative media the way we project ourselves is the same as the western media that we are quick to chastise. We shame ourselves as quickly as everyone else does. We project ourselves exactly how we do not want to be seen. Slow to everything, struggling, all too happy to celebrate even in times of hardship. Smiling at things we should frown on. I find South Afrikan TV adverts targeting black people truly
condescending. They are almost always stupid, silly, and needlessly loud and focused on exploiting old stereotypes. A big “Afrikan mama” laughing and dancing whilst doing her laundry. I haven’t seen a black woman anywhere who is so happy with hand washing her laundry that she will sing and dance to it. We seem to cover current affairs with the same narrative everyone else does. Do we have our own voice? What is it? I have written about Nigeria’s Nollywood before and why we seem only obsessed with sharing and spreading our worst stories. We have seen enough
We can only gain global influence and confidence by solving our identity issues first. As long as we don’t solve something significant of our own we will always believe that having a vision means looking east or west. We need to define our vision so strongly that whoever partners with us does so because they are compatible with that vision/story. The idea that China loves us and will help build a new Afrika, when we have no vision of it is naive. We need to stop trading in the things we can’t replace for short term, often ego boosting gains. We are losing both leverage and influence. What I see now is a continent indulging is selfplunder. At some point the
The longer we take creating a viable Afrikan vision the more we will lose not only what we have, but we also risk exhausting our potential. witches, cheating wives and corrupt leaders. Let’s create new stories that challenge that and inspire us into the future. Let’s explore how and what can be done to end corruption. We have made and watched too many “Mother of George’s” surely if we want the world to look at us differently, if we want to change the narrative then we have to change how we speak about ourselves. We have to change our actions so that we create alternative characters to those influencing our story. 10TH Anniversary Edition
diamonds will run out, the gold will all be dug up and the oil wells dry, what will we have built with those resources? The one thing worse than corruption is short-sightedness, it simply costs us more. For too long we have been living a promise, an idea, we need to start living a process, a reality. The future is not around the corner, its long been here and we are squandering it. The longer we take creating a viable Afrikan vision the more we will lose not only what we have, but we also risk exhausting our potential.
Scandals of a Priest
UPMOST SPOKEN WORD ARTIST
Today you are going to change your cheque into cash But first you take your crippled relative out with the trash Shame on you Mr Preacher man The first one in this bank stretching your receiving hand Go and have a blast with the paper Blow it like a sax But when God is president You will be the first to be taxed
Money for the love is the root got the loot Tossed the beggar by the stoob before he messes up your suit Then dash! To the places where the streets don’t catch You doing all the worldly things to which you are still attached That you preach against Hope you reach a sense of feeling bad The kingdom cannot be inherited by evil man! Do you understand! Holla Amen if you got it! But stop this hallelujah amen at the pocket of the poor The spirit doesn’t profit anymore You say one thing, you do the opposite, for sure. The path to righteousness is as narrow as the alley The alley is as dark as the shadow of the valley The valley is as deep as the scandals of the priest The priest is benefiting from the system of the beast
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You drooling on your pulpit, you can’t maintain your soul You want to go to heaven because the streets are paved with gold? I’m told, your wife feels your house just ain’t a home You want to play the part but you fail You want to act the part but you fail to play the role Of a good loving father to your kids Now give, Your daughter advise thats positive All you do is strike fear You gonna live in eternal fire No, guide us where heaven is Where heaven is Preacher man See you don’t know Heaven is that feeling when the truth is in your soul If you would just listen to your sermon you would grow Most of the sick and dying haven’t heard from you at all The God in you just wants you to answer to your call Not to have the sinners put their hands up to you, no! If you don’t mind let me just bring you to the book of Upmost chapter one verse two The path to righteousness is as narrow as the alley The alley is as dark as the shadow of the valley The valley is as deep as the scandals of the priest The priest is benefiting from the system of the beast Good Lord!
» DESIGN 10TH Anniversary Edition
B O TA N Y
Modern Indigeny EVELYN ROE BOTANIST
n my early years as a botanist, I filled notebooks with measurements and observations, but felt no closer to the plants I was studying. Scientific methodologies, while producing many fascinating facts, do not provide a bridge between human beings and nature. They hold plants at arm’s length, keeping the scientist at a safe distance from the green beings. I longed to cultivate a deeper relationship with living plants, and thought I might achieve this by learning how people from outside the Western scientific paradigm come to know nature. Therefore, I turned to ethnobotany, focusing on indigenous knowledge. For some years, I was envious of Afrikan herbalists and their mysterious ways of knowing! I suspected that they had techniques for communicating with nature, and I wanted to know their secrets. Would I have access to the old ways, as a non-indigenous person or was it just my bad luck to be born on the north-west fringe of Europe and educated in Western science? How do we define ‘indigenous knowledge’? I think of it as knowledge held by a particular group of people who have lived in the same place for a long time; these people know their place in a unique way, specific to their culture. Indigenous people identify themselves as being native to a land with
What brought you to Afrika? That’s a question I’m often asked by visitors from overseas. The question unsettles me – it reminds me that I’m not from here, that this is not ‘home’ – but it also leads me to explore what it means to be ‘indigenous’. This article follows some of those explorations, and traces a thread of inquiry about my own sense of belonging.
Devil’s Claw root
which they have strong links, and there is a historical continuity with ancestors who pre-date colonial or invading societies. My ancestors would have known the healing properties of native plants; my 100-yearold aunt from the Scottish Highlands still remembers eating from the hedgerows and using traditional herbal remedies for ailments. Could I be considered to be indigenous to that part of the world, or has the loss of age-old knowledge been so comprehensive that there is no longer a distinctive ‘culture’ to belong to? Loss of indigenous knowledge is an issue of deep concern in Afrika. In the past 10 years in Zambia, I have often been asked to record traditional plant uses and local names, ‘before it’s too late’. This plea
THE POVO JOURNAL November 2014
For some years, I was envious of Afrikan herbalists and their mysterious ways of knowing! I suspected that they had techniques for communicating with nature, and I wanted to know their secrets. comes from a generation who learned about their culture from their grandparents, but whose grandchildren are being born into a globalised society in which traditional healing practices are rejected as oldfashioned. This is a symptom of a widening chasm, a separation from our roots in nature, and a concomitant crisis in the human spirit.
Another symptom is the rapacious exploitation of the Earth, the rapid and brutal extraction of materials without regard for the intricate and ancient relationships which support all life. In the face of such destruction, however, some researchers are beginning to turn to the old ways, seeking earth wisdom. Can indigenous knowledge come to the rescue? Can we find solutions to our current ecological crises by tapping into a broader knowledge base than that of modernist science? More poignantly, are the indigenous elders prepared to share what they know with researchers who have not shown proper regard for their wisdom in the past? Traditional practitioners from all around the world – shamans, sangomas, and healers from
express their inner natures, we can discover and appreciate their inherent qualities and healing properties. Thus, even if we forget what our ancestors knew, all is not lost, for the plants can teach us again. 10TH Anniversary Edition
I believe that we could develop our innate abilities, and become more directly aware of our connections to the living world.
For aren’t we all indigenous to the Earth, regardless of our specific culture? Wherever we live can become our home; if we stay a while, we may come to know the place intimately. By paying attention to how plants
While we grieve for the rapid loss of biodiversity, and the extinction of age-old human cultures, perhaps we can open to the possibility that modern human beings, indigenous or otherwise, may come to know nature more deeply, and thus find ways of healing ourselves and our relationship with the Earth.
indigenous cultures - report that they learn directly from the world, as well as from elders: dreams, visions, and intuitive knowledge are their sources. Could we all come to know the natural world in this way?
For aren’t we all indigenous to the Earth, regardless of our specific culture? Wherever we live can become our home; if we stay a while, we may come to know the place intimately.
Herbalist Mr John
Is Tourism in Zimbabwe Recovering? LUKE BROWN TRAVEL & TOURS @lukebrownzim
n this article Luke attempts to discuss and answer some of the key questions relating to the current condition of Zimbabwe’s tourism industry, along with the future potential to become what he terms a Destination Giant. Some of the questions posed include: What is the current state of Zimbabwe’s tourism industry? Is the destination turning a corner? What visions and aspirations does/ should the destination have for the future? How can Zimbabwe create sustainable growth and become a travel destination giant?
What is the current state of Zimbabwe’s tourism industry? We have, in the last four to five years, entered a phase of slow growth. We have experienced average year on year increases in tourist arrivals since 2009, particularly in Victoria Falls and to some extent in Hwange. Most of the growth has come about as a result of an improvement in the economy following introduction of the multi-currency system and an improved overall image as a safe and peaceful destination. However the growth is far from where it could be and somewhat isolated, especially when you consider that places like Kariba, Mana Pools, Eastern Highlands and Gonarezhou are still struggling. The reason for this slow and irregular growth is firstly because whilst we have improved our image to a
degree, we are still sending out a mixed message to the world on our national vision for tourism i.e. where do we want to be and how are we showcasing this to our markets? As a result of this grey communication most people are still only exposed to the negative news about Zimbabwe. Secondly we are still hampered by a lack of access options into the country and also within the country.
Is the destination turning a corner? I certainly believe we have already begun turning the corner and we have a bright future ahead. What matters now is how we are able to go forward and implement what is necessary for us to grow to where we want to be. This will take a team effort on the part of both the government and private sector tourism arms. This must be a seamless and transparent cooperation. What visions and aspirations do/should the destination have for the future? At the moment we are somewhat pre-occupied with
Zimbabwe is poised for rapid tourism growth if we can get the basics right, especially access, and concurrently we need to manage our perception as a safe, competitive and welcoming destination correctly on the international stage. 24
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trying to compare our position now with where we were at the peak of our tourism levels in the late 1990s. Whilst it is important to seek out the benefits of hindsight and learn from what we did right in the past, it is also imperative that we do not get bogged down and potentially dispirited by this. We are in a different era now and we must look forward. We must learn from how our neighbouring countries in the region market themselves as a destination. South Afrika and Bostwana for example have widespread market penetration due to clever brand management. Their national tourism ministries and boards have also sought close links with the private sector. Through this close collaboration they have created real confidence in the travellers’ minds. Then once they receive the tourists they follow through and send them home at the end of their stay with an incredible memory that makes them brand ambassadors. Word of mouth then takes over. This is what we must aspire to achieve in Zimbabwe too.
How can Zimbabwe create sustainable tourism growth and become a destination giant? We have everything going for us as a destination – friendly people, a fantastic climate, diverse landscapes, amazing safari options, cultural and historical significance among so much more. When you look at a country like Dubai one is always amazed by what they have achieved. They are a Destination Giant in world terms and the reason for using them as a comparative example is because of the stark contrast
they have with Zimbabwe in terms of their natural attraction. Literally out of nowhere they have become who they are today. Yes they have had the money to help them get there, but the driving force has actually been their vision, consistent hard work and determination. In Zimbabwe we do not need to create much because the natural ingredients are already there. We just need to be clear on our vision first and then work hard together to implement and maintain it. We are somewhat down the road already and credit must be given to our Tourism Minister Mzembi for being instrumental in helping us achieve this through his leading roles in securing things like the hosting of the UNWTO in 2013, Routes Afrika (Aviation Conference) in 2014 and the recent best world destination award we were given this year by the European Council for Trade and Tourism. Some forward thinking from our transport ministry has also meant that our airports are being refurbished and expanded. Bulawayo International Airport has just opened its new international terminal and Victoria Falls Airport will have a new runway and international terminal by the middle of 2015 capable of handling wide body aircraft like Boeing 747s. The main road from Plumtree to Mutare is being resurfaced and is also nearly complete. We must build on this momentum going forward and if we do then the sky will be the limit, meaning the chances of becoming a destination giant like Dubai will be realised. Collaborative action and belief from all stakeholders will be key.
10TH Anniversary Edition
PAIDAMOYO CHIDEYA (DEMOYO)
T R AV E L
Getting ZIMspired JENNIFER SCHUCHMANN
City of dancing trees
ast year I got the great opportunity to take a break from my studies in Germany and do a 6-month internship at FAO in Zimbabwe. These months were spent at the Harare office and in the forests around Chimanimani in the Eastern Highlands. My internship there focused on researching the reason why baboons were damaging pine trees, as part of my Masters degree thesis. Besides the work for my studies, I discovered a whole new side of myself, to which I got inspired by the culture and landscapes of Zimbabwe. I got ZIMspired!
Zimbabwe is not very well known in Germany. Little surprise that many of my countrymen first heard about Zimbabwe when I told them about my impending 6 month visit. Even I didn´t have any specific expectations of what I would see and experience in Zimbabwe. But, the trip- really opened my eyes to a whole new part of myself. Right at the beginning of my stay I learned about the culture of totems, the tradition that each family has an animal that they associate themselves with. All this fascinated me a lot and raised questions of how a family got their totem and the meaning behind it. I lived with a family whose totem was Nzou (Elephant) and despite explaining to me about their culture and traditions, I still had more questions than answers. Before coming to Zimbabwe, a good friend of mine gave me the
Ghostlike dead trees in Lake Kariba, Zimbabwe
Zimbabwe is not very well known in Germany. Little surprise that many of my countrymen first heard about Zimbabwe when I told them about my impending 6 month visit. idea of writing stories about what I see and experience in Zimbabwe. I never wrote stories before, so I didn’t expect myself to really do it. But, when I was in Zimbabwe and I saw the beautiful landscapes, the amazing balancing rocks, the culture of totems and a kind of magic spirit all around it, I just started writing stories. The main character of my stories is called “Princess Nzou”. She comes to a new world and discovers the magic and history of that world. She learns about how the magic stones gave an animal as protector and connection to nature to each family and she lives many adventures with her friends,
THE POVO JOURNAL November 2014
the lizard and the baboons, until she meets the monkey who shows her the way to happiness. These stories are inspired by the landscapes I saw and the people I met during my time in Zimbabwe. One of those stories I will share with you now. I want to emphazise, that this and the other stories are only from my own imagination, it does not and should not represent any traditional tales from Zimbabwe, rather my own way of reflecting on the images Zimbabwe created in my mind. Zimbabwe inspired me to start writing stories and songs. I got ZIMspired! What about you?
On her journey in the country of sunken trees, Princess Nzou took a break and sat down on a stone to rest a bit. Sitting on the stone she felt how she calmed down and decided to stay. In the evening when the sun set down behind the horizon, she saw how the branches of the trees started dancing. They started dancing on the superficies of the water and Princess Nzou listened to the memories of the branches back then, when the water wasn´t there yet, when they were dancing together with the animals of the forest every night. Back then, every evening when the sun set down, the dance of the forest began. The animals made the music, each one in their tone and melody. All together the music began to rise, more beautiful than any human would ever hear. The music of the animals was so powerful and magical that even the trees at night were able to raise up their roots out of the soil to join in the dance. The trees danced in chorus or alone. At times they danced wild, at times they danced silent, but always in tune with the music of the forest animals. When the big water came the music stopped and the animals fled and left the trees behind. Since then the trees are where they are night by night and they remember the sounds of the animals and dream of the dance of the forest. The branches of the trees move on top of the water in tune to their memories and will do so until the memories fade and the trees will stand still and alone in the water. Princess Nzou became part of those memories, when she sat on one of the magic stones watching the branches dance in the night.
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Need for Change of the Zimbabwean Mind-set RAYMOND MUWANIRI SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT @raykasezim
n this article I will be talking about the need for change of the Zimbabwean mind-set if we are to be sustainable and competitive in this new global village. I will be talking about Zimbabwean thinking but with relation to Afrika as a whole. After living in Europe for a while you get to experience a different way of thinking and I have come to realise that we Zimbabweans generally think and handle certain situations differently from Europeans. The mind-set we have has both a positive and a negative impact on the nation, I will be discussing the latter. Firstly I like to discuss how people in Zimbabwe choose their profession. I feel that most young school leavers are not selecting their future careers for the right reasons. One should pick a profession not from pressure from parents or what everyone else is doing, but because of passion for what you want to do with your life. This in turn will create a healthier work environment, more productivity benefiting the individual and the nation. An example is the Development/ NGO sector which I am involved in. Some of the highest paying jobs in Zimbabwe are in the NGO sector which can pay salaries of up to a $1000/ month or more. Civil servants are getting about $300/400 per month with the average salary in Zimbabwe at about $250/month, making the NGO sector very attracting to school leavers. What is happening
One should pick a profession not from pressure from parents or what everyone else is doing, but because of passion for what you want to do with your life. now is students are flocking to universities and colleges to do Development Studies, not for the passion of wanting to bring development to Zimbabwe but for the high salaries. This has left the development sector too competitive and over flooding with graduates. There are not enough jobs in the sector to accommodate all these graduates therefore increasing the number of unemployed graduates in Zimbabwe. Some who do end up in development jobs find themselves without the passion or drive to do the jobs effectively. I believe that for development to be successful
Zimbabweans have a strong urge to be entrepreneurial, but I feel that we are not innovative enough and rely on a ‘copycat’ syndrome which is rampant in the country. Why should we care about the Environment? WATCH HERE http://bit.ly/1Fnn80b
on the ground it has to start with the development of the mind. In this line of work, passion has to be present for development to be successful. It is not only the development sector that is being affected, the medical and police sectors to
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name a few. Straight A students are being pressured by parents into doing medicine due to the status it holds and the high salaries. This profession may not be the preference of the child, therefore we breed doctors and nurses that are unhappy in their jobs (though the salaries are high) and lack that care one should have when dealing with vulnerable people. There are reports of high number of applications to join the police force, especially traffic police. Most apply because they feel they do not have many options and believe that is where the money is. Traffic police have been known to take bribes on the road therefore increasing their income. The point I am trying to get across is one should study and work in the area that they have a passion for to ensures the work is done effectively. Zimbabweans have a strong urge to be entrepreneurial, but I feel that we are not innovative enough and rely on a ‘copycat’ syndrome which is rampant in the country. We tend to follow the current trend rather than engage in viable businesses we have knowledge in and capacity to engage. An example is the transport sector which was privatised in the late 1990’s. Individuals purchased buses and kombis (mini buses) and were handed permits to serve the public. The initial people who ventured into the transport sector were very successful.
In the years to follow anyone who could afford to buy a vehicle ventured into transport, even the diaspora who had left to work abroad wanted in. Now there is an over abundant number of kombis and haulage trucks found in our major cities and towns. There is chaos in the cities, especially Harare, with too much traffic and kombis block the roads near rank stations. Ranks like Coppa Cabbana, Fourth Street, Market Square in Harare, kombis form long queues that hinder the flow of traffic and can wait up to 4 hours for the next load. Kombi drivers also have a reputation for fast, dangerous driving to increase their loads per day and are responsible for a lot of traffic accidents and road deaths. Supply has become more than demand making the sector non-profitable. Another example of the copycat syndrome is in agriculture. The number of tobacco farmers has been increasing significantly in the last 4 years. Initially the odd farmer grew tobacco fetching high prices of up to $5,94/kg. Small scale rural farmers were making fairly high profits which improved their livelihood. Now in 2014, nearly everyone in rural Zimbabwe wants to grow tobacco. 2013 registered the highest tobacco production since independence leading to the reduction of tobacco prices to about $3.17/kg. It is another classic case of supply exceeding demand, also to mention the high amount of deforestation in tobacco regions from farmers using firewood from forests to cure their produce.
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I N N O VAT I O N
« FROM PAGE 28 Need for Change of the Zimbabwean Mind-set
This is already leading to mass environmental destruction with Zimbabwe predicted to be semi-arid desert by 2025 if this continues. In this case farmers could simply grow other cash crops like paprika or cotton to name a few. Zimbabweans need to learn to venture into projects and business that are suitable, profitable, environmentally friendly and most of all sustainable. The amount of litter in our cities/town, especially Harare is overwhelming. Zimbabweans generally do not have a tradition of putting litter into bins and there seems to be a culture of illegal dumping, especially in squatter areas (Epworth, Hopely farm) and other newly built areas where the bin collection services have not commenced. Zimbabweans do not hesitate to litter with their rational being someone will come and sweep the streets, throwing litter into the forest is normal practice because no one lives there. We need to enforce a culture of binning litter and putting waste where it belongs. In this era of sustainable development, waste is considered a resource. Recycling of paper, glass and metals should be introduced by the city/town councils to reduce the amount of waste going to landfill. Biodegradable waste can also be used to make compost for agriculture or bio gas which can be used for cooking. Awareness campaigns should be increased to change the mind-set, measure should be put into place to punish litterers and those who practice illegal dumping. Zimbabweans need to start living a healthier lifestyle, leading to a better quality of life and higher life expectancy. As much as we love eating out
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fter exceeding our initial Kickstarter target of $15 000 by double the amount, generating a great deal of publicity in magazines and on the internet, we went on to make $100, 000 in sales in the first year. Due to overwhelming demand, we’re out of stock on product in the
USA. We have units available in the UK via Amazon (http:// amzn.to/1rMyTCC). In our quest to raise captial to expand the product line and grow the business, we had the opportunity to pitch our idea to potential investors on the Shark Tank. Shark Tank is an American reality competition series aired on ABC that features aspiring entrepreneurs making business presentations to a panel of potential investors.
Shark Tank - Season 6, Episode 2 - Sept 26, 2014 WATCH HERE http://bitly.com/1tyPI9R
traditional foods, I feel that we are not eating a proper balanced diet and lack exercise. Health issues like strokes, heart attacks, high blood pressure are on the rise. High amounts of cigarette and alcohol consumption, fattening braai food, large amounts cooking
oil in relish (for better taste), carbohydrates from sadza, potatoes, rice and pasta are all root causes. In Zimbabwe it is acceptable for one to gain weight, they say it is a sign of ‘good living’. People do not realise that your metabolism and digestive system slows
Sustainable Development should be introduced in schools, colleges and universities. This is so that Zimbabwe can have a generation that is responsible for looking after our environment and resources for today and the future. 30
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down in your 30’s therefore one should adjust their habits. We need to change this mind-set and realise as one gets older, slower and lazier, it is advised you adjust your eating habits and exercise more to keep yourself healthy. Drinking and driving another issue we need to adjust our minds to. With no limit to the amount one can drink before driving or presence of traffic police after 6pm in most places, we are living in a society of high risk. Countless people have died on our roads as a result of dangerous drunk drivers. More campaigns need to be done to make people aware of the consequences, more night patrols need to be introduced to catch offenders and hold them accountable. We need to change our mindsets to care more about the next person, resulting in a united and safer nation. Sustainable Development should be introduced in schools, colleges and universities. This is so that Zimbabwe can have a generation that is responsible for looking after our environment and resources for today and the future. Presently I feel there is no sense of sustainability in both rural and urban areas. Most Zimbabweans live for today and rarely think about how their descendants will cope in the future as a result of today’s practices. Myself and other passionate people are on a mission to change the mindset of Zimbabweans towards a more sustainable livelihood. I have made this my purpose in life, door by door, person by person, country by country, Zimbabweans, Afrikans and the world as a whole must start to appreciate more our blessed earth and all in it. There is only one earth, so live for today with a thought for those that will live tomorrow.
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What’s in a Photo?
The passion I feel for what I do, is something so deep and spiritual there are no words that can really express what it is that I feel when I pick up my camera and start to capture emotions, feelings, unseen moments, light, form colour.
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MICHELE FORTMANN PHOTOGRAPHER @michphoto
think the incredible thing about Zimbabwe is that there is a great pioneering spirit when it comes to art and culture here. What is great is we have so much area for growth and an incredible foundation to start building on. I love the fact that we have no specific set of rules or an industry that dictates how we must think. Zimbabwe is an incredibly exciting place to be at the moment, we have so much potential and artists in all areas, are so hungry to learn, grow and achieve their dreams! I am a bit like this too, I ‘feel’ photography, I don’t have a set of rules and if anything I strive to break every rule in the book when it comes to photography. I have a completely ‘out of the box’ approach and am not scared to try new things. I love living on the edge and believe I have got where I am because I have no fear or limitations in my life. If we do not live life to the maximum and feel every emotion there is, how can we expect to take great images! I feel every emotion and moment that passes through my lens. It is an expression of what I am seeing. I think this is where a lot of photographers get it wrong, photography is so much more than just capturing an image. It is looking into someone’s soul and seeing a piece of them that no one else has seen. People are vulnerable in front of the camera and the reason is because you are staring into their soul and capturing something incredible, something intangible. Just recently I did a shoot for a woman who I admire and think is an incredible creative.
What was incredible is that after the shoot she crumbled and admitted to me that what I had done for her in one session of shooting was more than 10 years of therapy! I was absolutely blown away and felt so honoured that in that small time in front of the lens, she had found a piece of herself and reconnected with who she was; found an inner confidence and strength she never knew existed. By being vulnerable and opening herself up to me through my lens she had found herself again after so many years. That is what cannot be taught to anyone… photography is an incredible form of art and goes so much deeper than what people think of it on the surface. The passion I feel for what I do, is something so deep and spiritual there are no words that can really express what it is that I feel when I pick up my camera and start to capture emotions, feelings, unseen moments, light, form and colour. It is a bit like an artist with a palette of colours and a blank white canvas; as they start to paint there is a piece of them that extends through that brush to that blank white canvas and what you see in a painting is an expression and extension of that artist. There is a little piece of them in their painting, there is emotion in the brush stroke and energy in the colours and when you the viewer looks at that painting, you don’t just see a painting you feel that painting without realizing it… that is the same with a photo, you are feeling what that photographer captured at that moment. This applies to all areas of photography from photojournalism where you are feeling real everyday life – pain, suffering, and elation, joy to the fashion photographer that has captured emotion
in the eyes, colour, a mood, expression and energy that occurred at that exact moment when they felt the moment and clicked that shutter! That moment when I feel it is the right moment to push that shutter is not something tangible I can explain, it is just a split second when I see that emotion in the eyes that I am looking for, when the energy of that moment is just right, it all just comes together and in that split second…’click’… a moment is captured and when you the viewer looks at it, without realizing it you are ‘feeling’ everything that occurred in that split second. The power of an image to move a person to tears or feelings of happiness is incredible. An image can invoke a whole series of emotions. We become voyeurs on a journey, getting transported to a moment in time, reliving everything that was captured in that split second the photographer ‘felt’ the moment and pressed that shutter. A still image, is so much more. The word ‘still’ just doesn’t do justice to what a photo really is. Photos are alive and have a n e n e rg y t h at c a n n ot be explained. The other incredible thing is that those moments will live on forever. They say the memories that stay most vivid in our minds are the ones captured as photos! History lives on through a click of a shutter…. Quite a thought isn’t it? I feel so privileged to not only do something I love and am so passionate about but that I also get to be a maker of history in all spheres of people’s lives. My images will live on long after I leave this earth and generations to come will one day look back in amazement to a time gone 10TH Anniversary Edition
by, feeling that little whisper of wind, tasting the dust in the air, feeling the emotion of the moment, the energy of a time gone by, transported back in time for a brief second. How magical is that! I hope when you read this piece, you will feel a little bit of that magic that I am talking about; that you will take away a little of my enthusiasm for life and that you too will follow your dreams and live life on the edge Thank you for joining me on this little journey of inspiration In a world where visual stimulation is on the rise, we almost have an overload of visual stimulation. With social media platforms, we find ourselves looking through thousands of images at a time. The digital age has changed the face of photography, allowing photographers the ability to shoot so much more than we did when we used film. Plus we now have a much more complex postproduction process, which brings in another whole creative dimension. When I edit it is a very personal part of my journey of an image and something I feel the need to do myself. No one else looking at that image can edit it how I will, as they won’t understand the moment, the relationship, the feeling I was trying to capture… there are so many elements. I have been working on a photo essay on the old age homes in Zimbabwe and the incredible old souls that are in them, some of them abandoned by their families, others that still have such incredible support and also the amazing teams of people that work so tirelessly behind the scenes. I took some images a little while ago, the idea behind that imagery can be so thought provoking, the strength of an image.
WRITER / BLOGGER @tinohondo
erhaps its time Afrika stopped harping about Ubuntu and took a critical look at herself before she begins to mend what has become broken. That may sound harsh but we have good reason to consider it.
Ubuntu is defined widely by this phrase, “I am because you are”. In Shona its said, “ Munhu, munhu nekuda kwevanhu ” loosely translated “I am what I am because of who we are”. Ubuntu = humanness = kindness, goodness, virtue. Ubuntu is in essence an Afrikan humanity. Its a quality we owe each other. It demands we extend warmth to both strangers and members of our community. Ubuntu is the reason why you can ask for sugar from your neighbour - its the reason they can expect help from you in return. The ideals of Ubuntu are gone to the dogs, little known and little practiced by our own people. Even Google search knows Ubuntu first and foremost as “the most worlds’ most popular OS (operating system)” - a software for computers. I shudder to think of how little our children know about this noble philosophy and way of life. A woman was gang raped and murdered (Mutare, Zimbabwe)
One of the early writers wrote that one of the maxims of Ubuntu is this, “A king owes his status to the people under him”. Does a king or leader then not owe the people good governance and peace at all costs? in October 2013. People say they heard her scream but no one came to her aid because they thought “it was nothing”. One wonders how screams of terror and death could possibly have sounded like nothing. A group of boys helped each other gang rape 12 year old girl after spiking her drink. Most people said it was her fault for drinking liquor at her age. Others blamed GMO products, “these girls grow up so fast these days and they lack decorum”. Does another’s lack of self respect or is it self restraint excuse anothers lack of the same? 3 young men robbed and killed a white family in South Afrika, they laughed their way to court - their conviction obviously not a worry to them. I guess they felt justified in their action, after all this was a white family. Makes it easier to say “they” are not “us”. In Afrika we “cure” lesbians and gay people by raping them, beating them, sometimes killing them - often in gangs. I guess that’s another convenient “they” and “us” distinction which makes it easier to ignore the virtues demanded by Ubuntu. If one can convince oneself that someone
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is not “one of us” then one can convince themselves that they owe that person/s nothing. But who is an Afrikan? Who is deserving of the embrace of Ubuntu? Does it confine us only to humanity towards our fellow black folk or does it extend to even the stranger in our village? The old Ubuntu - the one our leaders like
Ubuntu is in essence an Afrikan humanity. Its a quality we owe each other. It demands we extend warmth to both strangers and members of our community. Mugabe, Mandela and Tutu used as the cornerstone of our postcolonial nations was humanity to all. It did not pick and choose, did not discriminate by race, sex, tribe or any other distinction. Above all it preserved life. Shall we get started on the several civil wars that have racked our continent for decades now? Not driven by ethnic and religious
diversity as suggested by some but fuelled by greed. One of the early writers wrote that one of the maxims of Ubuntu is this, “A king owes his status to the people under him”. Does a king or leader then not owe the people good governance and peace at all costs? Yet Afrika is burdened with bad governance, bad administration of public funds, corruption and opaque accountability. Sure, these and many other ills are not associated with ALL Afrikans - its some people, a few people, who corrupt the whole. But if I AM BECAUSE YOU ARE then the collective has to share the vision, hasn’t it? The collective has to share and live the same ideals. Can one expect to find Muslims in a mosque? Of course Can one expect everyone in a Christian church to believe in Christ? Definitely! If Ubuntu is Afrikan humanity, can we expect all Afrikans to share it? We should - or else we are shortchanging ourselves. This is the reason why Afrika needs to take a good look at herself and make a change or stop bragging about Ubuntu completely. For as long as we are not responsive to the calls of hunger, poverty, desperation, inequality, disempowerment coming from the least of our people then we are all nothing because they are nothing.
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A G R I C U LT U R E
Growing Mushrooms NYASHA MUPASO MUSHROOM GROWER / CONSULTANT @mushtella
u s h ro o m s a re fungi and they have been around since creation and have been used as food and medicine for centuries, in other words mushroom growing is “fungi farming”. Mushroom growing is a business that is a bit far from conventional farming, mushrooms are not plants neither are they animals but they are somewhere in between. Before I go further let me allay your fear if you have any; all cultivated mushrooms are not and can not turn poisonous in any way, they are 100% safe, anyone can grow mushrooms anywhere all year round thus it’s a great business compared to some seasonal crops. In a country where people are struggling to make ends meet there are many schemes that promise to solve people’s financial challenges. There has been several pyramid schemes and many will come and they will certainly collapse as others. I am not suggesting mushroom growing is “a miraculous business” but it is a good business that has been around for decades in Zimbabwe and delivering results if done very well. From mid 2013 the “sack potato production” system took the country by storm, like many sober minded people I knew it was going to fail. Others left mushroom growing for potato growing, I feel sorry for many of them now as the potato growing was a scam and most are back with mushrooms
Anyone can grow mushrooms anywhere all year round thus it’s a great business compared to some seasonal crops. though devastated. Like many such ventures people just rush without thinking about the business and doing further research, I have written this to help you to think of mushroom growing as a solid alternative business venture available in Zimbabwe, or you are into mushroom growing already you may get your perspective changed, or perhaps you are looking for an alternative/ supplementary income generating project. If you are already into horticulture or agriculture in general this is a great opportunity as it blends very well with other agricultural projects as you will see later. Perhaps you just need to grow mushrooms to supplement food at home and improve your diet or as a hobby.
they were only picked in the wild as is still the case in Zimbabwe and everywhere in the world. Mushrooms are valued as food and medicine. Mushrooms were a preserve for royal families in other places in times past. Wild mushrooms in Zimbabwe and many Afrikan countries provides nutrition at a time when nutrition is at its lowest just after the dry season just as well when food is at its lowest, rains bring mushrooms and with it much joy for mainly families dwelling in the rural areas. In Zimbabwe many earn good income between December and March by selling wild mushrooms by the roadside. With commercial cultivation it’s a different story they can be grown all year round.
B e fo re t h e c o m m e rc i a l cultivation of mushrooms,
Several hundred tones of mushrooms are eaten in Zimbabwe from December to March which constitutes over ninety percent of annual production. This shows how low mushroom production is in Zimbabwe and how there is room for growth in this industry. Mushroom growing is highly profitable compared to many horticultural produce. High profitability is also enhanced by the use of waste material as I will explain later in the article. Mushrooms remain a high value crop for several reasons; mushrooms are a delicacy, its in short supply in Zimbabwe (with most imported from south Afrika), highly nutritious, healthy food and has medicinal properties.
Some people take the statement that mushrooms are in short supply to mean that when you grow you don’t need to market your produce, alas one has to work hard on marketing their produce as well as ensuring they meet the quality standards expected by the buyers. 36
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Mushrooms require low working capital and are labour intensive (an opportunity to c re ate e m p l oy m e nt ) . Many fail because they were told mushroom growing is highly profitable, they then fail to manage their costs of
production. Once you have the growing rooms (which you don’t necessarily need to build), if you have existing structures you can simply convert such into mushroom g r o w i n g r o o m s ”. S i n c e agricultural wastes are used working capital is very low, spawn “seed” will constitute
The export market is wide and open, generally there is a shortage of mushrooms on the world market. On growing one can specialize in dried mushrooms or only do fresh mushrooms or both. S o m e p e o p l e t a ke t h e statement that mushrooms are in short supply to mean that when you grow you don’t need to market your produce, alas one has to work hard on marketing their produce as
use of multi-currencies after the demise of the Zimbabwe dollar. Mushroom growing has many advantages compared to other horticultural produce; has quick returns, it does not require arable land and does not require large pieces of land, mushroom growing is a good candidate for urban farming.
As I have alluded to earlier on, mushrooms are grown on wastes (both agricultural and industrial waste materials) like wheat straw, cotton seed hulls, maize stover and many plant residues which makes the working capital requirements very low. Generally fertilizers are not used in mushroom growing. For other types chicken manure is used in compost preparation. These agricultural wastes are usually burnt but these can easily be converted into mushrooms. Show me a business that converts waste into food and/ or money and I will show you mushroom growing. Mushroom growing is knowledge based and one needs time to read and take time learning, let me also say there is no substitute for experience, training and consultancy is good but it’s the experience that counts most. Be wary of one day courses, most of these trainers do not give you support. Mushroom growing knowledge has been a closely guarded secret in Zimbabwe particular by former commercial farmers, things started changing around the nineties. I have written a lot on mushrooms in Zimbabwe for the past ten years on my and other blogs. Slowly there is now a lot on mushroom growing in Zimbabwe on the internet. If you decide to get training 10TH Anniversary Edition
or help, make sure you get professional trainers preferably one who is also a grower, as there are many offering training yet they are not growers, hence you will end up getting theoretical training only. The industry growth has had challenges in the past due to spawn supply “seed” challenges, this has since changed due to an abundance of local spawn production laboratories an opportunity anyone can take as I have suggested earlier. The local m a r k e t re m a i n s l a r g e l y unsatisfied as the shortage is covered by some imports from South Afrika. Shortages on the local market answers many who ask if there is an export market for mushrooms and why local producers are not exporting? Who will be interested in exporting when the local market always experiences shortages. The export market is wide and open, generally there is a shortage of mushrooms on the world market. Potential investors need to choose which type they want to grow and logistics is a big challenge, local growers they do not have capacity to do high volumes that are usually required by importers at any given time, pooling production is not yet viable. So for those who want to do huge investments the export market is wide open, for small scale growers the local market is the way to go. The Zimbabwe mushroom industry is still in its infancy if we compare ourselves with other countries (outside Afrika, except South Afrika) this fact means there is big room for growth, if space allowed I would have written on how Zimbabwe imports dried mushrooms from Germany for our soup production industries.
M o s t Z i m b a b w e a n s a re beginning to appreciate the value of eating healthy food just like other parts of the world. That is a big influence for mushroom consumption in Zimbabwe. Another big driver for increased demand has been the growth in the tourism sector. This trend has continued since the country adopted the
As the unemployment levels rise people in urban areas are looking at what they can do and its common knowledge that most have limited space which makes conventional farming not possible but with mushrooms it’s possible as just a small room can be used to grow mushrooms on a small scale.
well as ensuring they meet the quality standards expected by the buyers.
the highest percentage on working capital. The mushroom growing industry is so diverse and one can specialise or diversify. For instance you can be a spawn producer, produce one or several types (though button and oyster are the major types grown in Zimbabwe), one can do spawn as well as grow mushrooms, one can just do marketing, one can do one or more of the above and also include training and consultancy.
Unleash the Artist in You
YEMURAI MAFI GRAPHIC DESIGNER
y childhood m e m o r i e s a re not as depleted. The excitement, appreciation and enthusiasm I had for art was great but ever extinguished by the fact I was being nurtured into a so called perfect offspring. Never do I recall any of my fellow friends, myself included, answering “ An Artist” once cornered by the common “what do you want to be when you grow up” question. Parents would grin in delight if “Doctor” or “Pilot”
my grade one homework, my colouring books showed traces of an eye for colour and throughout high school I dried up mighty markers designing p o s te rs , b ra n d e d d e s k s , t-shirts, created tattoos and even love letters for my mates. Miraculously I found myself at the Polytechnic and it all came alive. Looking back, I know a dozen individuals that handled the pencil or crafted finer clay and wire artefacts than I did. Yet they never got their chance to showcase it to the world let alone be able to take it up as a career. Craft Markets in Harare and Johannesburg flourish with
spectacular creations and so has this trade seen individuals earning a living out of it. I feel there is greater potential in Zimbabwean arts and craft than just the handing over of such master pieces at the value of one’s daily wage.
of creating craft that not only serves the ornamental value but to be incorporated into household and office items. Lack of exposure is one reason why they all create similar products. These wire craftsmen are comfortable being manufactures rather than artists. Taking me back to the veteran sculptors who sold their creations at a service station entering Rusape as well as in Mutare, who are now sadly no more. Our Artistic heritage in the form of sculpture, basket weaving, ceramics, cloth printing will surely become history if we as a nation see no value in owning a piece or just appreciating the individuals that still create such artefacts. Awareness in the form of developing curriculum around these trades would be a great move to promote and secure our heritage. It’s time we shift our mind-set.
In a bid to seek insight, I spent an hour with a team of wire craftsmen in one of Joburg’s prime areas. A friendly team who work together to meet the demand of their colourful beaded wire works,passionate about trying new dimensions
Being exposed to the greater side of art and design industries has transformed my perception and drive to break ground. Our Zimbabwean curriculum needs restructuring and intensive campaigns need to be tabled to raise awareness that will guide
Our Zimbabwean curriculum needs restructuring and intensive campaigns need to be tabled to raise awareness that will guide the youth to choose a career they are talented in. was the response. Yet behind the scenes moulding clay into animals and household artefacts, twisting wire into cars and crafting kites and better plastic soccer balls (hweshe) was the order of a day well spent. Such craftsmanship required passion, patience, precision and innovative thinking, an art in all angles. Three decades have gone by and my bread is now buttered through my art talent. These skills I possessed from the days we drew patterns for
There is greater potential in Zimbabwean arts and craft than just the handing over of such master pieces at the value of one’s daily wage.
THE POVO JOURNAL November 2014
the youth to choose a career they are talented in. Currently our institutions offer graphic design and fine arts alone. However there are various professions that require an artistic flair ; industrial / product design, jewellery design, architectural, landscaping, Interior design, textile, fashion design, photography, film production, interactive and web design. All these are vital sectors that require diverse, unique ideas and talented individuals. Such talent is within our children, siblings, friends and society. The greatest challenge is the notion that art does not bring or add as much value to one’s career in comparison to other sectors. I would like to challenge everyone to take up a wire or pencil if you once had it in you. Encourage those you know who possess the skills, nurture your kid’s talent by sticking up their drawings. Appreciate the Zimbabwean artists by visiting galleries and craft markets. Be it a small beaded key holder, acquiring a piece from a sculptor trying to make a name in Chitungwiza. I also appeal to the corporate players to consider funding and adopting the arts. Such actions will make and inspire individuals who have the talent and can use it to earn a living as well as to safe guard our Zimbabwean art heritage.
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THE DREARY, THE DRACONIAN & THE DUES
Artistic experiences in Zimbabwe ELTON MJANANA WRITER @EltonMjanana
lot of the time I find I am asking myself, ‘Why the hell am I even trying this?’. Before I even answer that question, I find myself hard at it and when I come to my senses again, I will be back to asking myself the same question. This cycle has continued for all of my artistic life. It started off as some form of amusement in the mid-nineties when my friend Bobby and I were guys about town, loving everything about the possibilities that a career in the arts seemed to promise – quite a dreamy future of a stylish house in the hills laden with exotic and wrought iron furniture, and a beautiful lass to share it with – a lass lavishly attended to by obedient domestic servants and children in private school. All these dreams and possibilities were pushed by the assumption that art, being intellectual paid well. Soon we outgrew the teen years and confronted the early adulthood comforting ourselves that ours were just eventualities delayed. Soon enough life took its course and
All these dreams and possibilities were pushed by the assumption that art, being intellectual paid well. reality sank in with the most depressing weight. We had to pick ourselves, get out of denial and face the truth; unless you’re in making fake pop music, you were bound to struggle in the arts and guaranteed that you couldn’t make a living. So, because we wanted to make a living – albeit anyhow now –
We were so busy plotting our success and conquering the world that we didn’t realize there would be something called censorship which would curtail what angle our work took.
we ventured into the real world. We began to see that unless you were in a certain bracket of people, some of whom didn’t bother to be very honest in their choices, you are never going
THE POVO JOURNAL November 2014
to get that house on a hill, and certainly the accompanying lass wouldn’t get out of our dreams and walk into our lives. Today my friend is exiled and barely making a decent life – he is happy, which makes me happy that life is looking up. I, on the other hand stayed and decided to fight it from within and maybe turn a few perceptions around. What wishful thinking – from a struggling actor to a wanna-besinger and brilliant writer I have landed a gig as Art Consultant with insurmountable hurdles to clear. It has suddenly dawned on me that for my struggles and for all of Bobby’s living in foreign hostility – our fate was never meant to be. It has been designed by a bully system that has ensured the suffocation of the arts. We were so busy plotting our success and conquering the world that we didn’t realize there would be something called censorship which would curtail what angle our work took, and if someone thought it was wrong – we would have our work
banned. We were oblivious to the National Arts Council of Zimbabwe which says artists and art bodies must apply to it to host any show. We didn’t know the NACZ would want to see our contracts with artists we want to engage and want to see our budgets so that they can charge us an ‘administrative’ fee, we just thought we would dream up our work and produce it and sell it to a starry-eyed public who would consume it to no end, earning us a lavish living. Today I sit in my office about to start the process of engaging the NACZ on the issue of the festival that I am now running. I have foreign productions coming in, lots of them – to mix and mingle and crossculture with the local to forge synergies and networks to result in universally appealing work for global consumption. One is tempted to think they are doing their fair share to make positive this badly damaged country’s reputation. Art has that magical ability to make any bad lighted country attractive – well art and
POVOAfrika Youtube channel documenting of interviews, live shows and discussions.
WATCH HERE http://bit.ly/1uL4tCZ 100th Video upload
Petinnah Gappah Book Reading at HIFA
Thomas “Tom” Lugo, lead singer of German band Jamaram
Well, in my sombre moment I ask myself again, ‘Why the hell am I even trying this?’ and before I can answer, the ticking clock reminds me that I cannot afford to waste any minute as anything in dealing with the red tape of the arts takes weeks and weeks to achieve – I of all people should know that the only time I should stop is when the s**t hits the fan again and I am asking myself THAT question again.
I don’t know if it is a fair feeling to want to be fine because I am an artist. I pay all the applicable taxes to my industry and to the greater generality of the nonworking as well as the working masses. 10TH Anniversary Edition
Raymond Muwaniri Volunteering in Kibera, Kenya WATCH HERE http://bit.ly/1tQpKAB #POVOKonvo
Mandisa Mabuthoe Shoes - SHOKO Festival Slam Poetry Express WATCH HERE http://bit.ly/1vRebJB BAYNHAM GOREDEMA
I don’t know if it is a fair feeling to want to be fine because I am an artist. I pay all the applicable taxes to my industry and to the greater generality of the nonworking as well as the working masses. I also live by the law blindly – or maybe I should open my eyes. What’s there to see instead of sad and depressing situations in a
society that I am supposed to mirror? Piracy of my work going unchecked and nothing to protect my intellectual property - that’s what I am closing my eyes to.
Calvin Chimutuwah Black middle class and fine art in Zimbabwe WATCH HERE http://bit.ly/1dDiHiO #POVOKonvo
So, I stare at this impressive looking program I have come up with on paper, take a sigh and prepare to face the National Arts Council who will throw me to the Zimbabwe Revenue Authority who will toss me back to NACZ. Then, the Censorship Board and then Immigration department and then pay lots and lots of official money and then maybe – if I have all the Police Clearances (from the artist’s countries) of the artists I intend to host, then maybe, all will be well. Then again, one can be forgiven for being pessimistic if the might of South Afrika and their Freshly Ground were netted at Harare Airport and only sniffed at the air of festivities at Harare
Garden’s HIFA – or better still the appropriate and childrenonly Mozambique dominated Umoja Flying Carpet entourage of 40 plus were shown the back hand waved quickly and furiously away -who am I and my little film empire to think I am above this?
sport. Brazil is famous for its carnival (art) and soccer (sport) and hence everyone even boasts of cleanliness being ‘going Brazil’.
WATCH HERE http://bit.ly/1t3iJv6
Shake the World PHINDILE DHLAMINI SOCIAL ACTIVIST @MsPhindiddy
hat counts in life is not the mere fact that we have lived. It is what difference we have made to the lives of others that will determine the significance of the life we lead – Nelson R. Mandela
These words have given much inspiration in shaping my life to what it is today. Madiba’s selfless dedication and clear intent to “Shake the World” to influence positive change in light of the injustice that was taking place in South Afrika at the time, is nothing short of admirable to say the least. For me, this great Afrikan giant of our time also represents how one person can make a significant difference in the lives of many. For as long as I can remember, I have volunteered my time to social development contributing in various ways to different humanitarian causes. When I began to realise that there is much work still to do not only in my country, but on our continent as a whole, and acknowledging that any contribution goes a long way to bridging the gap, I took the bold step to follow my heart and dedicate my life to being a part of the solution. As an Afrikan, I strongly believe that “Umuntu ngumuntu ngabantu” – meaning “I am because we are” speaking to the values of unity and compassion for humanity. I spend my days in the townships of Johannesburg witnessing, first hand, the rising levels of poverty around us. I spend my days with people seeking to
access opportunities so that they can make ends meet in order to survive another day. Literally. I spend my days motivating and inspiring people to keep pushing boundaries despite their current circumstances or constraints. But most importantly, I always attempt to provide tangible support and solutions that allow people to stop looking at their discouraging reality and begin to imagine a better future for themselves. Sadly, this is not a South Afrikan challenge alone, but one that our continent is facing as a whole. At Gracefully Consulting [GC], we believe in development at a community level to make a meaningful change that touches peoples’ lives directly. We are tired of seeing funders throwing money at communities with no thorough understanding of their needs. We are tired of seeing funders not focusing and addressing the root cause of the challenges that communities face, so as to assist in identifying feasible and sustainable solutions. We believe that this approach further disempowers our communities and continues to breed a sense of dependency, and in some cases, even a sense of entitlement to ‘handouts’.
I always attempt to provide tangible support and solutions that allow people to stop looking at their discouraging reality and begin to imagine a better future for themselves. 42
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As a business, we continuously engage government in their role towards contributing to social development interventions that positively impact communities. We work hand-in-hand with community projects that are making an impact to safeguard their community’s sustainability. Most importantly GC seeks to further understand the challenges that are being faced on the ground so as to introduce sustainable solutions that will empower people to help themselves. We work with corporates, to ensure that Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) funds are invested sensibly, and with the business objectives in mind. This ensures that the CSR Strategy does not stand in isolation, but that it is aligned and integrated to the organisation’s strategy and not a “once-off tick box approach”. We make certain that funds are channeled to community projects that are aligned to the organisations’ values and ethos. Or alternatively, w e a l s o d e s i g n b e s p o ke solutions that are uniquely fitted to organisations, and relevantly align social responsibility with the business’ objectives. At GC, we believe in harnessing and employing the true spirit of collaboration so as to make great strides in creating significant, sustainable development in Afrika. We take pride in igniting passion in others and making them understand the relevance and importance of giving so as to enable us to create an environment that enables and promotes the development of sustainable socioeconomic solutions for
our continent’s communities. In September 2000, building upon a decade of major United Nations conferences and summits, world leaders came together at the UN Headquarters to adopt the United Nations Millennium Declaration, committing their nations to a new global partnership to reduce extreme poverty and setting out a series of time-bound targets - with a deadline of 2015 - that have become known as the 8 Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). Shake the World - END POVERTY – is a global movement that brings awareness to the MDGs and aims to reduce poverty by primarily offering 8 colourful bracelets. We want to seize the momentum of the imminent end of the MDGs to demonstrate our results as best practice on how social-design-entrepreneurship partnerships can contribute towards socioeconomic development, reduction of poverty and achieving the MDGs. With over 450,000 bracelets sold worldwide, they also positively contribute to enhancing the arts and crafts industry by making “fair trade more fashionable, and fashion more fair trade”. Ambassadors share their belief to “fight poverty with profit” and have handed over the bracelets to President Jacob Zuma to inspire his ambition to create jobs in South Afrika. Mere months to go until the deadline, 8 goals to achieve, it’s time to shake the world! GC is proud to be the Campaign Representative in Afrika.
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A collection of motifs inspired from modifications on ethnic patterns derived from Zimbabwean material culture. Each one representing one of the 26 characters of the alphabet. By constructing these motifs into a font it gives our cultural patterns a contemporary lease of life opening up to new interpretations and applications.
Haus Ethnik Dingbats, my first type design project, which I made available as a free download to give back to the online community which I have been a beneficiary of, over the last decade. DOWNLOAD http://bit.ly/1d3iruO
Haus Ethnik Dingbats
10TH Anniversary Edition
« FROM PAGE 40 Shake the world
The MDG Report 2012: Assessing Progress in Afrika toward the Millennium Development Goals jointly prepared by Economic Commission for Afrika, Afrikan Union, Afrikan Development Bank Group, UNDP confirms that steady economic growth and improvements in poverty reduction on the continent continue to have a positive impact on MDG progress. Afrika has sustained progress toward several MDGs and the report suggests active steps to ensure that economic growth translates into new and adequate employment opportunities for Afrika’s youthful and rapidly growing population. The need to help drive growth, innovation and provide a clear competitive advantage was also highlighted. To do this, the countries of Afrika must invest in their greatest asset, their people – in particular, their growing number of young people – ensuring that they can be the productive, innovative, and engaged citizens who will help accelerate MDG progress and achieve sustainable human development. Afrika! Ignite is a rural development agency from South Afrika that creates opportunities for women and youth in rural areas to improve their lives by earning a decent living, and acquiring useful skills. Since 2009 they have partnered with Shake the World in developing fair trade bracelets for global markets. Afrika! Ignite has an outstanding track record providing extensive enterprise-development support to hundreds of youths and adults, particularly women, across rural areas. The Campaign aims to ignite organizations to see how they can also contribute with their CSR strategies in place, where we are also able to offer a marketing opportunity for customised
The target is to sell at least 1 million bracelets, and with that create sustainable job opportunities. Every bracelet counts and makes a difference. It is about every individual that is able to make a change in society.
branding. These may be used as trendy corporate gifts presented to employees, consumers and other valuable stakeholders. This will go a long way in assisting us to further promote the Shake the World Campaign and spread the underlying message of empowerment. As one of our corporate partners once mentioned, we too strongly believe that “We all have to play our part to improve our society and to create a sustainable and prosperous society for all. We are proud to provide a platform to ignite our nation and have a significant impact towards women empowerment by creating hundreds of jobs”. The target is to sell at least 1 million bracelets, and with that create sustainable job opportunities. Every bracelet counts and makes a difference. It is about every individual that is able to make a change in society. Poverty is increasing at an alarming rate and the MDGs are not yet met. It is our responsibility and duty to make our societies more sustainable by contributing to the development of our communities and create a better world for us all in the true spirit of Ubuntu. Many organizations, volunteers, schools, NGOs and business networks have joined the movement to END POVERTY now. The bracelets are currently sold in over 1,000 fair trade shops in the Netherlands, Belgium, Germany and Austria and even in 10 Ben & Jerry stores in Singapore and online. We inspire over 450,000 individuals daily. We hope that everyday when they wake up, and start wearing the bracelet, they inspire others to
THE POVO JOURNAL November 2014
begin to ask themselves what they can do to shake up their world and make a difference in their communities. No matter how big or how small. Mahatma Gandhi once said “In a gentle way, you can shake the world”. Now I ask You, “How will you shake your world today?” Afrika! Ignite – whose very name
calls for a rebirth or revival of our Continent - has paid more than R16 million to rural entrepreneurs since 2008, and in the past two years paid R2 million to rural women crafters. They were recently approved by the South Afrikan Jobs fund to establish more WOWZULU marketplaces, indicating that more people will be empowered and jobs will be created. Join the Movement, purchase your bracelet and let’s Shake the World together– one community at a time. Join our journey and get your bracelets online at www. shaketheworld.org Twitter: @ shaketheworld11.
Women Filmmakers of Zimbawe Wo m e n Fi l m m a ke rs of Zimbabwe (WFOZ), Zimbabwe’s leading women filmmakers’ organisation, and the oldest functioning film institution in the country, is an arts organization registered with the National Arts Council of Zimbabwe. WFOZ now operates as the women’s department under the Institute for Creative Art for Progress (ICAPA). ICAPA is a merger between WFOZ and sister company Nyerai Films. The organization, founded in 1996, aims to increase the participation and production capacity of women locally and regionally in the audiovisual industry. It also aims to bring women’s issues to the attention of the cinema viewing and television watching public. To achieve this, WFOZ has over the years engaged in various industry related activities including founding the International Images Film Festival for Women (IIFF) in 2002. IIFF, the only women’s festival South of the Sahara, has become an integral part of the local and regional film calendars and is a focal point for WFOZ’s activities. IIFF has also managed to create spaces and stimuli for societal engagement with critical issues ordinarily not engaged with adequately in the mainstream. In addition, WFOZ has produced and co-produced international standard films dealing with these issues. Finally, WFOZ is also expanding its activities regionally. In 2009, WFOZ signed a Memorandum of Understanding between filmmakers Catherine Musola Kaseketi (Zambia), Dominique Barouch (Reunion) and Evelyn Palesa- Gewer (South Afrika). The formation of the FemFilm Afrika (FFA), with its seat currently at the WFOZ offices, is to further consolidate and expand an initiative begun by WFOZ during IIFF 2007. www.facebook.com/WomenFilmmakersOfZimbabwe/info
» PHOTOGRAPHY 10TH Anniversary Edition
C R E AT I V I T Y
State of the Zimbabwean
Creative Industry MASTON MBEWE FOUNDER OF CREATIVELOOP.CO.ZW @mastonmbewe
he creative industry in Zimbabwe is alive and well as far as I’m concerned, thanks to passionate individuals and creative agencies, and companies who have managed to ride the wave of hardship, that the nation has had to endure. I salute those who have managed to keep their heads up against all odd’s to make sure that they get that pixel or dapple that canvas with ink, wherever you are and whatever role you
Businesses are re-organizing and as usual the first industry to feel the pinch is the creative industry, and that is our Achilles heel. the pinch is the creative industry, and that is our Achilles heel, I guess.
Mlilo. Other creative people managed to get educated in the Diaspora, I salute them too.
That leads me to my first lament, that the creative industry in not appreciated in Zimbabwe. Our work is so dominant yet unperceived, I try to imagine Zimbabwe without creative people, that would be a boring place indeed, we are there on every brochure, in the kombis, in every newspaper publication on the television yet we remain an afterthought of business decision
My second lament in why we do not celebrate ourselves. For some strange reason, there are award ceremonies for everything else save for the creative industry and I do not mean the visible creative jobs, I mean the back office graphic design, video editing or photography jobs. We need to start celebrating each other as an industry.
I salute those who have managed to keep their heads up against all odd’s to make sure that they get that pixel or dapple that canvas with ink, wherever you are and whatever role you play in the Zimbabwean creative ecosystem. play in the Zimbabwean creative ecosystem, we salute you. We are an Ecosystem, and we need each other, especially if we need to create a vibrant industry of our own, I will explain later on. Now that the salutations are out of the way, it is no secret that the Zimbabwean economy has gone through a very difficult period, for the past decade the economy has shrunk drastically and many companies have closed shop including household names, that we grew up with. The gradual result is the disintegration of the Zimbabwean creative industry, businesses are re-organizing and as usual the first industry to feel
making, hence the creative budget is the first to be axed in many institutions. Time has taken it’s toll on the creative industry, ZIVA (Zimbabwe Institute of Vigital Arts), are facing hard timers. I was very excited when I heard that they had launched an initiative on Indiegogo to support the school. That is the resilience of the Zimbabwean creative. When school’s closed shop a new generation of a creative was born the self-taught, those who decided to do something about their predicament and those are some of the big names we now know notably Nqobizitha ‘Enqore’
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Enough of the gloom let me share with you some positives that I have noted in the Zimbabwean c re a t i v e e c o s y s t e m . T h e economic downturn made a lot of big creative agencies in the country close shop and that also gave rise to creative geniuses whose names had been overshadowed or nonexistent prior to the meltdown. There are many creative people locally whom I feel really deserve to be mentioned, some are not plying their trade here, I would love to salute people like Nqobizitha Mlilo, Steven Chikosi, Babusi Nyoni, Baynham Goredema, Tinashe Njagu, Angela Jimu, Davina Jogi, Cynthia Matonhodze and Nancy Mteki to mention a few. Going forward the question we should ask ourselves is what can be done, rather than why is this happening. I hear a lot of people lamenting that Cinema’s are closing down on daily basis and the buildings are being converted to churches, how are filmmakers
going to distribute their films, they ask. We (creative industry stakeholders) make it sound like only Zimbabwe has been affected by this phenomenon, but even in America this is also happening. Recently Universal Studios announced that they are moving from film to digital, and that move alone has rendered many Cinema’s obsolete because they do not have money to upgrade, but you do not hear any noises coming from those quarters. As an industry we need to learn to adapt and adapt very quickly. I would also love to see the number of creative women also increase, there are some who are making their mark in the Zimbabwean creative industry, the Zimbabwe Association of Female Photographers comes to mind, but I feel more needs to be done to encourage women to fully take part in the Zimbabwean creative industry. Lastly, I feel I need to clarify my view when it comes to the Zimbabwean creative industry, what characterizes an industry, many people argue that there is no industry to talk about, for them an industry should be able to employ a large number of people and contribute to the nations economy, arguably that makes sense but I rather opt for the other definition that I found in the dictionary which describes an industry as basically ‘Hard Work’, which is what I see Zimbabwean creative doing at this moment. With hard-work the sky is the limit.
» PAINTING 10TH Anniversary Edition
D I G I TA L A R T
Photo DAVID ZINYAMA DIGITAL ARTIST / PHOTOGRAPHER @DavidZinyama
hoto manipulation, a skill that I know best, the application of image editing techniques using Photoshop in order to create an illusion or deception from a raw photograph. A mere enhancement or correction otherwise known as photo retouching. In my case having taught myself graphic design primarily, I wanted to use my own stock images within my work by taking photographs. By bringing the two, photographs and graphic design I was able to create something, mainly with experience executing concepts. I did not intend to become a photographer and designer for living, It is not that I wanted to create for a living, I had different dreams before all this but if I was to tell you my story, I came from a music background, I used to write and perform songs and had to design my own digital artwork covers to accompany my songs which included MySpace layout designs, flyers, posters, logos, etc. My peers could see that I was capable of doing this for myself so they wanted me to do their artwork as well so I started charging them a small fee. The more I did this, the better I got; to a point when I realized I was designing more than I was making music but at the same time I was making money off it as if it was a part time job but at the same time it was before my college years. So I made the decision to drop music and concentrate on graphics and I can say from then it was just all word of mouth and recommendations that have taken me this far along with working with small, medium and large businesses and organizations around the world, as well as some major names such as NHS, MOBO AWARDS, Metropolitan Police, etc.
THE POVO JOURNAL November 2014
10TH Anniversary Edition
Waiting HOPE MASIKE MUSICIAN @HopeMasike
ecently, I somehow bumped into a lot of material on waiting, music, movies and literature. Ironically, I was at a point in my life where this particular gospel was most needed, perhaps it came a little bit too late but still, it added much needed value
to my life now. We live in a world that’s moving so fast, at times it’s hard to catch up. Many times we feel we are lagging behind. I am speaking as a young Afrikan woman, career-oriented, traditionally brought up and caught up inbetween my culture and the emergence of other foreign cultures into mine. I have had the extraordinary privilege to be able to travel a little in the past two years and that introduced to me some cultures I had never imagined. You see, travelling changes you. Inevitably so, it does!
Before I started travelling a lot, I was very good at waiting. The only problem then was that I was doing it for the wrong reasons. I waited because it was the expected manner, expected of a young woman in my culture and also from a religious perspective. I didn’t wait because I understood the importance of waiting and I valued the art of waiting from within. So when I travelled, got away from the comfort of family around me, got away from the watchful, preying eyes of my society, got away from the environment that had carved me into
I have learnt that in life there are things we have to work for, there are things we will get any ways, and there are also things we just have to wait for. 50
THE POVO JOURNAL November 2014
the woman I was; there was a threat towards certain values of mine that were not too strong in me. I came back home changed. I did not notice this and it took a long while to realize that I had changed. It took me yet another long time to realize that I did not like what I had changed into, that this new person was not the one I wanted to be. Of course, it took me long also to figure out how I was to ‘come back to the middle’. I managed any ways, eventually. I am back to the waiting mode, but this time voluntarily, intentionally and strongly so. So I will share a couple of things that have to do with the powerful art of waiting. You have heard, I know, that patience is a virtue. You also have heard, I am sure, that good things come to those who wait. In my language - Shona, we have a saying, Kumhanya handiko kusvika. Literally, ‘running doesn’t equate to getting there’. How true all these three have turned out to be in my life. I have learnt that in life there are things we have to work for, there are things we will get any ways, and there are also things we just have to wait for. Some of what I have mentioned differs from one person to the other. Some have to work for financial independence whereas some are born with huge inheritances of money; some people find love very easily and very early in their lives, some people find love
after kissing a million frogs. We are different. Our lives are different. Our gifts are different. However, we all have some waiting to do at some point in our life. Christians are taught that the Bible says, ‘Those that wait upon the Lord shall be given renewed strength. They shall fly on mounted wings. They shall run and not be weary. They shall walk and not faint.’ The process of waiting, teaches many important life skills. As you wait your resolve is strengthened and sharpened. Waiting helps you value the thing you are waiting for; when you finally have it, you will appreciate it more and will not take it for granted. Waiting time is a good time to reflect, reload, refresh and be more in touch with self. Once a waiting period is over, you are filled with a sense of achievement and accomplishment and this enlarges your selfesteem. Waiting upon the Lord is an honour, because we know afterwards we are given renewed strength. An opportunity to wait is a blessing, a chance to get more strength, re n e w e d e v e n . Im a g i n e reaching a point where you don’t mind waiting. You are not rushed by anything but your purpose, in good time. You will not be hasty. You will be composed and collected, re g a rd l e s s o f w h a t e v e r pressures, family, societal or otherwise. There is a special type of power hidden in waiting upon the Lord, or waiting for anything else you must wait for. Tap into it and grow!
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Re-tracing the Frenzy of Zimdancehall PLOT MHAKO ARTIST @jibilika
hey say if you arrive in Harare and spend hours without hearing the sound of Zimdancehall then you have not arrived. This is a testimony of the impact and frenzy that
Zimbabwe has seen a serious proliferation of dancehall artists in every neighbourhood across cities, with studios also mushrooming everywhere solely to record and promote one music style. with studios also mushrooming everywhere solely to record and promote one music style.
Winky D on the Main stage at HIFA
has been created by the music genre whose inspiration is Jamaican dancehall. Over the past two years Zimbabwe has seen a serious proliferation of dancehall artists in every neighbourhood across cities,
Borrowing from the Caribbean island of Jamaica and done in native languages, Zimdancehall has a distinct melody which can be equated to poetry over beat. The history of its rise dates back to the early
THE POVO JOURNAL November 2014
days of independence, from a time when reggae legend Bob Marley performed at Zimbabwe’s independence celebrations thus sparking a wave that saw Zimbabwe ‘converting’ into a reggae nation. Similar to the Jamaican scene, Ragga and Reggae clubs and sound systems grew popular in the early 90s, creating a firm foundation for what today is being termed Zimdancehall. Dancehall DJs and sound systems such as Jah B of Stereo One, Jackie B of Silverston, King Alfred of New Generation, Templeman of RoughMix and Munya of Alkembulani among others, are credited for promoting dancehall and giving upcoming artists a chance to showcase during what they termed MC contest where one would toast lyrical on a dub version. Unfortunately only a handful of artists managed to break through into the mainstream music scene. However they still needed a seasoned artist to carry them on their back to get the limelight. This saw artists like Potato growing popular after a stint with the late Andy Brown and superstar Oliver Mtukudzi, Major E and Booker T with Innocent Utsiwegota and many others who could only spice up the set by making chants on particular songs.
The turn of the century witnessed sound systems enjoying a good share in showbiz and subsequently dying down mid-2000. A lot of music observers and fans concur that Wallace Chirimuko popularly known as Winky D struck the final match-stick for the unfolding revolution. The sound system DJ / MC cum TV presenter turned artist is recognised as the most popular and accomplished Dancehall artist to ever emerge from this
ZimDancehall took a curiously exciting turn over the past three years churning out a new breed of artists and backyard record labels whose hits got the entire country singing and dancing. Winky D performs First Street mall during HIFA 2014 WATCH HERE http://bit.ly/1nHi40J
land. Winky D whose early penchant for violent lyrics, love for the ghetto youth and unparalleled poetic genius won him a phenomenal audience becoming the most popular urban artist in the country. The Ninja President or Biggiman as he proudly calls himself has travelled and performed on all continents and still commands a huge following. Raised in Harare’s Kambuzuma suburb
Nonetheless Zimdancehall has often been castigated for its negative messages and effects on the youths. Many
feel that the genre fans drugs, alcoholism and deviant sexual behavior thus affecting societal development and exposing the youths to the deadly HIV virus. Several youthful artists have in the past released songs and videos that are sexually suggestive and encouraging the use of marijuana and violent behavior, an element many believe will bring the music style to its deathbed. Concerns have also been raised on shallow and similar lyrical content that
Zimbabwe Institute of Vigital Arts (ZIVA)
brags about the same thing. Most of the instrumentals commonly known as Riddims have also been condemned
The Zimbabwe Institute of Vigital Arts (ZIVA) was founded by Saki Mafundikwa in 1999 as the first school of digital design, new media and visual communication in Zimbabwe. Mafundikwa, a typographer, graphic designer, photographer, filmmaker, author of Afrikan Alphabets (the first book on Afrikan typography), and recent TED Talks speaker; after a long sojourn through the world of design and media in the United States decided that the power of graphic and visual communication should be returned to the source where it all started, Zimbabwe. He returned to his country and amidst social and political upheavals managed to found and recently expand ZIVA into a program that galvanizes intrinsic values found in design.
for poor instrumentation and arrangements. One
Dance Trust has released an HIV awareness ZimDancehall CD titled Positive Riddim which
prominent artists such as Killa T, Shinsoman, Juwela, Tally B, and flavor of the moment artists. The institution believes that the music style has the power to positively influence young
society therefore the need to engage artists and bring out
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Tocky Vibes among other
Since its birth ZIVA has produced students such as (among many others) Nontsikelelo Mutiti who received her MFA in design from Yale University, Maxine Chikumbo who now attends Cooper Union, and Christopher Masonga who in 2003 was awarded the Type Director’s Club of New York City’s Scholarship award. ZIVA is sending a new generation of designers and artists onto an arts scene that is in the midst of a 4th generation pop art movement.
10TH Anniversary Edition
organization, the Jibilika
ZimDancehall took a curiously exciting turn over the past three years churning out a new breed of artists and backyard record labels whose hits got the entire country singing and dancing. Artists like Freeman, Guspy Warrior, Killa T, Seh Calaz, Shinsoman, Lady Squanda, Souljah Luv hailing from “ghetto” communities of Mbare, Chitungwiza, Dzivarasekwa and Highfield among others. This ensuing development saw the genre getting the attention of every citizen and promoters who rushed to get a share of the scene.
Today the culture has grown viral creating frenzy in every city and village thus becoming one of the most influential popular youth culture in Zimbabwean history empowering many young people who are involved in music production, sales, video and promotion
Many feel that the genre fans drugs, alcoholism and deviant sexual behavior thus affecting societal development and endangering the youths to the deadly HIV virus.
the artist has gone on to set up Vigilance studios and live band which has seen more artists transforming their acts to live instruments, shying away from the backtrack CD culture which has been bemoaned for killing creativity. Today he has transformed his melody and message, churning out more positive lyrics to his fans whilst his critics maintain he rose to fame by singing negative stuff. His music and brand continue to rise, cutting across societal and racial divides, earning him huge contracts and brand ambassadorship for a lot of organisations.
business. Many self-taught music producers have set up studios in their bedrooms without proper recording facilities but still able to rock the nation. The now popular ChillSpot records, Gunhill Records, Mt Zion studios are among many makeshift studios whose works defy their setting and incapacity. Last year saw the introduction of the Zimdancehall awards which attracted a lot of corporate support, an encouraging step in recognising and supporting the scene. A lot of Zimdancehall artists continue to tour outside Zimbabwe to entertain their fe l l o w co u n t r y m e n a n d foreigners in South Afrika, UK, Singapore, Australia, Canada and the USA.
Bete Size Ten TENDEKAI ‘MADZITATEGURU’ TATI
Tina , We are marching to paradise , siyaHamba ezulwini Because Chingava chikafu chemupoto , chemu plate kana chemubhini Chese iManna From Heaven Kumapete its a win-win
Mapete makobvu Mapete matete Mapete mapenyu Mapete avete Mapete pakati peCarpet Mapete mukati me Cup yeTea
Marara Kwamuri iBurden , Kwatiri iHeaven
Mapete muCupboard Bete paTable Mapete mupoto yemaVegetable Mapete iTrouble Mapete MaRebel Kupinda muBachi rema Honorable Kagumbo musadza , Kabapiro mundiro Tunhoko muDrawer rinogara ndiro Pamadziro maSpider ndiwo maSuper hero AnoTrapper mapete asi Work Done Equals Zero Because mapete iHobho , iGozha, iPlenty Ishura saBhoki anotsenga maDandy
MaPesticide might come in very handy, But Replacement dze Nuisance will never ever end Mushonga wekuzora, wekuSprayer wekutsveta Wekusasa , muchasasa kusvika maneta Muchasasa nezvawo mapete kusvika maneta Sekuneta kwamakaita nekusasa nezvaManeta
Tendekai (Madzitateguru) Tati at the HIVOS Poetry Cafe
Asi musasa ndewawo , imi ndimi munoRenta Bete haribhadhare rinongo Squatta imimi muchiSweata Richisvikoita zvarinoda pachikafu chamurikuseta MaCustomer mu Restaurant obva ashedzera “Mune Bete muPlate mhani waiter” Bete Haritami mukatama Padheni pasina mapete hapaitwi maTummy nematama Hapagutwe Panogutwa pasina bete, Richatouya chete Nanambuya , vazukuru varo vana Momz nanatete Kune bete mhando diki risina mapapiro Pawavhara ukasunga Pakangopindwa chete ndiro Koti bete riri very Common rinenge ishwa pachimiro Sehuku idofo pakuBhururuka asi iro rine Mapapiro
THE POVO JOURNAL November 2014
To confirm, batidza light remukitchen kumaEleven Tinenge tine Zimbabwe Annual Cockroach Conference Mapete eLower class ndiwo ari pafufu Arikudya loaf ndiwo Ma Corporate
War & Peace WATCH HERE http://bit.ly/1wopRBi
Kozoti bete Rakareba kuenzana neMuvharo weBhiro Haringoonekere pese pese Ndosaka muchiti mariona moti “hona zibete iro” Iri Ndiro riya rinemakumbo anemaDesign anenge minzwa Rikapinda pane mapepa , imi ka imi, munotorinzwa Kuti pfokocho pfokocho Hachisi chinhu chidoko icho iBete Size 10!
Light richingobaka , take Cover MaComrade Mapete all Disappear SemaTissue Mu public toilet . Mapete anosemesa but mabhinya ari worse Mapete anodya chaasina kushandira but mbavha dziri Worse Mapete ukamaSprayer anodzoka futi but huori huri Worse Becoz apihwa Bribe nhasi achada kupihwa futi mangwana Swera Mangwana futi , zvese nevhiki rese
Billion dollar question ndeyekuti isu mapete takabva kupi Because Bete ririku Migrator Kupinda mudheni mako harimbokupi
Chenjera kuita Bete uri munhu anofema Being a Pestilence MuSociety Kuita wacho watiri kuBlamer
Chance yekuzviSpota Ingori Haikathi madhodha Kangela Bafana bafana , Chipolo namaWarriors baya ngena eZhlini
Pamwe hautozvizivi kuti uri problem Because bete harizvikete Zvinzvere pfungwa nemoyo wako , ufirite mapete.
10TH Anniversary Edition
Bringing Down the Walls MARCIA TLADI POET / WRITER
What have walls done for us lately?
ince time itself, walls were built to protect societies and their livestock from conflict with wild animals, potential aggressors and the liberties taken by nature; sand or rain storms and other ruins-naturely. Walls evolved over time and we erected these to demarcate territory and assert claims to it. We housed ourselves, in the memory of our heroes we built walls and stamped their names on these or painted on them, poetry in their honour and for those unwanted elements, whether human or other forces, we built walls to shut them out or wall them in. When in the embryonic days of city-states and heavy empires boundary walls were erected around cities, these were not mere freestanding perimeters but complex monolithic architectural structures purposed for martial strategy. They hosted surveillance towers and gates manned by guards who would open and close the gates at certain times of the day for inhabitants and visitors. Within the constructs of the walls and at intervals, were apparently, long and wide passages used for religious practice, commercial and other activity as far as the multiplicity of function afforded by cleverness of design went.
magnitude in their closeness to us and for all our pursuit of freedom they have imprisoned us so that we expense to go out in the open and breath fresh air in the countryside, the seaside and any other land open for breathing air that is not overly recycled. Separation Barriers – Some Famous Walls
The Great Enclosure at Great Zimbabwe, Masvingo
Shona ancestors who harvested from the surface of the surrounding hills the granite stones that make up the wall. Here, and perhaps from an overly romanticized historical angle of Afrikans as benign and unbecoming of military strategy, freestanding walls are
In time these walls have however also separated us, fast growing to suffocation magnitude in their closeness to us and for all our pursuit of freedom they have imprisoned us...
In Afrika’s Sub Sahara, the mortar-less walls of Great Zimbabwe testify to the masonry prowess of ancient
THE POVO JOURNAL November 2014
said to merely have enclosed a settlement. Retaining walls provided a barrier to the movement of earth, stone and water; bearing in mind that Great Zimbabwe is built near the southern edge of the plateau of Zimbabwean highlands. Great Zimbabwe, said to have been considered a rainmaking shrine, at a point was settlement to between 12 000 and 20 000 inhabitants depending on who tells the story. Whether to protect us from the elements or from belligerents, these impregnable walls have for the most part served us well through time affording us the perception at least, of security. In time these walls have however also separated us, fast growing to suffocation
The Great Wall of China was built and maintained over centuries and dynasties to protect China from invasions from the north by Mongolian nomads; the high cost of its maintenance due to its enormity, often cause for much debate. Nonetheless rather than deter intruders, the wall strengthened the resolve of the nomads; escorted by hunger from the dry and barren lands in the north of China in pursuit of greener pastures, perhaps as well wanting to see what it was that China had that it felt it had to hide with hundreds of miles of wall that myth claims can be seen from the moon. China was on more than one occasion invaded, its rule overthrown despite the wall. On one such occasion China herself surrendered and opened the gates to be taken over. Over the years, possibly not seeing the value of the wall in the context of everyday survival, peasants living in its vicinity often raided the wall for its bricks to build houses. For 28 years the Berlin Wall, raised overnight, stood between East and West Berlin primarily to act as a barrier to the brain-drain that communist East-Germany experienced in the 50’s in the
days when ‘moving on up’ was westerly and to keep the West and its ‘fascist’ opinion in the West. For the most part, the wall achieved its objective (albeit addressing only the symptoms of a problem), the exodus to West Germany only recommenced once the wall was collapsed. Years after the demolition of the wall, the people of Germany refer to it as ‘The Wall in the Head’ because its psychological effects can still be felt more than 20 years after the wall went down. The wall split families right in half and rendered many a worker in West Berlin residing in East Berlin jobless; as simple as people waking up and not being able to go to work the next day. People suffered mentally, social development suffered claustrophobia and the people of Germany still find it difficult to relate to one another even though the physical wall has fallen. ‘Privacy Walls’ - The not so famous walls The less talked about walls in whose shadows lurks the daily negative news in which media swims, are the walls of our homes. When I was a child living with my parents in a house in a rural township of the then Bophuthatswana, gardenwalled houses were a rarity; a sign of true prosperity. Like the other ten or twelve houses on my side of the street and opposite, wire mesh fencing which at one time stood shiny and taut in its glory, bordered our yard. Soon however, the shared fences between houses developed manmade holes big enough for an adult to pass through and over time some of the fences gave way and relaxed into the ground. You see, fences were more of a hindrance to our civic practices of visiting the neighbour just to chat, of going over to borrow
The Hill Complex at Great Zimbabwe, Masvingo
salt because meat was on the stove and one had forgotten to buy some or simply had no money. For us children it did not make sense that you could see your neighbour’s house right through the fence, yet you had to walk all the way around through the gates to get there to play with your friends and often we would find ways sometimes landing us in trouble. But at least with this type of fencing, the illusion of space was there and you could still see a stranger walk up to your absent neighbour’s door. In the more affluent suburbs private homes were surrounded not by mesh but by brick walls or more commonly ‘stopnonsense’ (concrete precast) fencing so that one could see only the perfectly manicured gardens though holes in the pattern of the wall. It struck me then what a bother it must be for the children to have to walk all the way around to go play – if the gates were not locked. Perhaps these children did not visit as often as we did, I thought. High walls were so rare in my neighbourhood that I often overheard older people - whether influenced by envy or factual evidence - remark, “Iyo, she’s building a wall? They (criminals) are going to chop her up behind that wall and we won’t hear the screaming”.
But it was soon enough that most people in the race for upward social mobility gained pace and collected more personal luxury items and so mounds of soil and building sand piled outside people’s yards became a common sight so that our shoes were often filled with the sand that we notoriously mounted on our way back from school. Soon, walls were erected all around
do not mean the breaking of bread or any other clichéd image of that kind of sharing, which as would be expected happened in any case; we shared resources, the children played on one grasspatch, one swing, it was easy enough to pool together chairs from the other households for an event at another. We could see in the streets when a particular child had bunked school or had no food. We could see the alcoholics and the mentally disturbed and we did something about it too. The free for all movement between households that I experienced as a child ceased to exist so abruptly. No longer could we play freely in a communal backyard. Imaginably only in the more underprivileged residential spaces such as shanty towns and the rural areas do these living conditions still exist. These people perhaps still find
...we shared resources, the children played on one grass, one swing, it was easy enough to pool together chairs from the other households for an event at another. The Great Enclosure at Great Zimbabwe WATCH HERE http://bit.ly/1nIUHnv
us at a fast and steady pace. A ‘decent’ wall surrounding one’s yard symbolized prosperity so that those households that struggled remained exposed, bare and shamed as if they were part of the street, as through them, we had shortcut access (double-ups) to everywhere. These houses lost their dignity later only recoverable by a wall. Before the advent of these privacy high-walls, we shared what we had and cared what happened next door. By that I
a need to coexist and support each other. Here everyone knows the next person and his or her business, which despite the hype, is not altogether a bad thing. Here an old man can stop you in the street and just by looking at you, tell whose child you are. That of course means that you could not misbehave as the governance of children was also evenly distributed. Crime and ‘de fence’ In S o u t h Af r i k a a ro u n d 2004, a series of one airline’s advertisements appeared on national television inviting
» TO PAGE 58 10TH Anniversary Edition
« FROM PAGE 57 Bringing Down the Walls
holidaymakers to different local destinations. In one of the adverts, a young boy is sitting on a beach in the coastal city of Durban building a sandcastle. In finishing his castle, he unexpectedly crowns its walls with barbed wire. The punch line is, “Expect more Jo’burgers in Durban”. Any non-avid news follower from anywhere in the world knows the rate of crime in Johannesburg and it is no great wonder that a bird’s eyeview of the city may reveal shiny specks atop fences, marking electrified wires, barbed or razor wire and broken cool drink bottle shards cemented into the holes in the top layer of bricks in the wall. No longer just for theatrics and status, it has become a necessity to build walls to protect us from the ever on the rise crime in our neighbourhoods.
and therefore the terror it incites. We are building these walls taller and taller and closer and closer to ourselves. If the Berlin Wall caused wallsickness ( p s y c h o l o g i c a l d i s o rd e r s and psychiatric illnesses), what of these walls of such claustrophobic proximity? Perhaps you’ll say, in contrast to ‘civil pacification walls’, ‘a n t i - i l l e g a l i m m i g r a t i o n walls’, ‘anti-terrorism walls’, ‘anti-drug-smuggling walls’, ‘conflict zones’ our access is not restricted or our movement regulated but are they not really or does fear hold the keys and like guards to the ancient walls, determine what time of day we leave and what time of the night we return? Imagine the Possibilities As walls continue to rise, trenches dug between nations and classes and colour lines, in some parts of the world
We exist within a capitalist system and here dog eats dog. We are in a rat race and we cannot possibly expose the game plans we develop behind our walls. The private walls we build are better constructed and stronger than their stop-nonsense predecessors. But even this has not deterred criminals and we are therefore always seeking to advance security at additional costs to our often city-tight budgets. Despite the high level of architecture and despite the technology of infrared perimeter alarms, individual alarm systems, remote access and CCTV cameras, we remain in fear of who might be lurking about waiting to pounce upon our property, in essence, imprisoning ourselves and limiting our view of the world and thus increasing our imagination of the unknown
fenceless communities are very slowly starting to re-emerge in residential design. They bring with them other types of walls albeit; electronic and technologically integrated to the all-seeing eyes of our Big Brothers but these too have proven collapsible and may over time as well become obsolete. A world where one can roam freely and leave their window open in the summer, where one can leave one’s broken down vehicle in the middle of the road and hitch a ride to town to come back the next day with a mechanic to find the vehicle still there is attainable - as we’ve seen in the films. At least that
THE POVO JOURNAL November 2014
is what we have led ourselves to believe that ‘realities’ like that can only be fiction. That our reality is unchangeable; we live in a violent world and our children know nothing else. So far that paranoia has been the premise of our solutions. Erecting walls to deal with the symptoms of a cultural disease has so far seemed one of our only avenues. But change is possible and it starts in the mind of a few but it grows until it is an all-encompassing, all-we-know reality. It is the individual decisions we take as a community of people that eventually make up the collective viewpoint. A few years ago I lived in a neighbourhood where I knew and spoke to only one of my many neighbours. We were both single parents and as such, looked out for each other. For instance, should a strange noise come from the direction of my house, she would call me to check if we were not in danger. Our children played together regularly and although we adults rarely visited, we exchanged talk and gifts over the wall. I often wondered what it would have been like if we tore down the wall between our properties, maybe used the bricks to build a common toolshed. I imagined this setting would facilitate better socialising, more support and importantly, better security. I then wondered what it would be like if there were no separation fences between all the houses on my block. How much crime could there be if we knew each other and questioned any strange behaviours around each other’s homes? Or are we so different from one another that we feel ashamed and need to hide behind walls.
What am I thinking? Of course we are. We exist within a capitalist system and here dog eats dog. We are in a rat race and we cannot possibly expose the game plans we develop behind our walls. Except we have people that are just as determined if not more to forcefully open our coiffeurs to see what treasures we are hiding. Except behind these walls reside people that are mentally ill, people who sodomise young boys and rape babies and people who keep dead bodies hidden under their beds, people that are ill precisely because these walls confirm that they are not wanted by society because they are different and do not fit in. Behind the walls that are meant to protect us, lives our own worst enemy – ourselves. What if really, transparency was part of a solution and the only barriers we built were for shelter from those elements of which we have no control. On a scale larger than we would be had to believe, we too suffer when the physical wall begins to live in our heads. Our concern becomes limited to the wellbeing of ourselves and our nuclear families. We forget that as a whole we cannot be happy if the people around us are not happy. We can hide so that we do not have to hear the whining of those without but eventually we are affected by their unhappiness when they (often spurred by lack) attempt to take away from us forcefully, what they need for survival. We can say, “…Please, at least leave us alone in our living rooms. Let me have my toaster and my TV and my steel-belted radials and I won’t say anything…” ‘I’m mad as hell’ speech from 1976 film “Network” Or we can begin to change the way we think and dare imagine the possibility of better solutions.
» DESIGN 10TH Anniversary Edition
Prophets and the Saving Gospel ISIAH SUWARI GOSPEL PREACHER
od desires that His children be liberated in both physical and spiritual dimensions. Christ’s mission to the earth was to achieve this liberation (Luke 4.18, 19). Christ came to deliver us from the kingdom of Satan into His kingdom and also to deliver us from the various physical oppressive forces (e.g. political, economic, social, technological etc). However, in as much as God would have us free from the various physical oppressive forces, the ultimate goal for this is spiritual liberation and salvation at the Second Coming of Christ. Present day preachers, usually masquerading as “prophets” have preached on physical liberation at the expense of the true saving gospel of Christ. There is a significant shift from emphasising the spiritual aspects of Christianity to the physical. Modern day prophets seem to be motivated by money and make sensational claims. They promise financial blessings and liberation for anyone that sends their “seed of faith”. They even claim to know how many viewers or listeners there will be and that they will have their mortgage paid off or see their business prosper if they send in their offerings today. If the opposite happens and the promises are not forthcoming, the blame is laid on the believer as they are told “you have
Modern day prophets seem to be motivated by money and make sensational claims. little faith”. Some have even claimed to prophesy and tell people their national identity or passport numbers. The list on how these “profits” claim to be messengers of God is endless. The Bible tells us that our God does not work in this way. Ezekiel 22.25 says: “The conspiracy of her prophets in her midst is like a roaring lion tearing the prey; they have devoured human lives; they have taken treasure and precious things; they have made many widows in her midst.” These false prophets claim to have special revelation from God and can prophesy about things, people, and events that are to come. You see many on TV, on the Internet, and on radio that claim to be modern day prophets. Many a times these men of God claim to have received visions from God telling them to start a ministry and/or church. But as the Bible makes it very clear and as I shall explain below, revelation has been completed and the church has already been found by Jesus Christ. I will not dwell much on the doctrines of men as taught by these men. I will now go to discuss the true saving gospel of Christ as outlined in the New Testament. Christians are guided by the New Testament in doctrine and
THE POVO JOURNAL November 2014
• 1 Timothy 1.3; Titus 3.9 - Urge certain men not to teach strange doctrines; Do not pay attention to myths and endless genealogies; Anything that give rise to speculation rather than furthering the administration of God by faith (fruitless discussions) • 1 Timothy 1.10 - The law is made for everything that is contrary to sound teaching • 1 Timothy 4.1 - People would pay attention to deceitful spirits and doctrines of demons • 1 Timothy 4.6, 7 - Following the commands of Paul would nourish Timothy in the faith and sound doctrine; Have nothing to do with worldly fables fit for old women • 2 Timothy 1.4-5 - Build a generational faith in your family • 2 Timothy 1.13 - Retain the standard of sound words which you have heard; guard this treasure jealously • 2 Timothy 2.14, 16 - Do not wrangle about words which destroy the hearers; Avoid worldly and empty chatter • 2 Timothy 2.23 - Refuse foolish and ignorant speculations which produce quarrels • 2 Timothy 3.14 - Continue in the things you have learned • 2 Timothy 4.3 - Men will not endure sound doctrine… accumulate teachers for themselves, turn away ears from the truth, and turn into myths • Titus 1.9 - An elder must hold fast the faithful word which is in accordance with the doctrine • Titus 2.1 - Speak the things which befit sound doctrine
practice. The New Testament speaks of one and only one gospel. Paul told the Galatians that if even an angel would bring another (different) gospel, he should be accursed (Gal 1.6-9). Jude speaks of our faith which was “once for all delivered to the saints” (Jude 3). Peter speaks (in the first century) that God had given the dispersed Christians “all things pertaining to life and godliness” (2 Peter 1.3). Paul told the Ephesian elders that he had “declared the whole counsel of God” to them, and he has various instructions to Timothy and Titus, urging them to remain in this one doctrine. Christians who await eternal salvation today are in the church of Christ. There is only one church (Col 1.18; Eph 1.22; Acts 20.28). This is the church that was founded in Jerusalem on the day of Pentecost by Jesus Christ (Acts 2). Christ is the Head/ Founder of this church. So there is no need for any man of God to claim to have received “another” revelation from God instructing them to start another church, which is far much different in doctrine and practice from the New Testament church. In a nutshell, Christians should be able to “test the spirits, whether they are of God; because many false prophets have gone out into the world” (1 John 4.1). The standard for this testing is the Word of God. We should be able to stand faithfully on the one and only saving gospel of Christ.
10TH Anniversary Edition
SIKHANYISIWE SEBATA PHOTOGRAPHER
ANNIE MPALUME MAKE UP & DIRECTION
DANAI CHAPFIKA MODEL
They Never Come Back TAKUDZWA GEZI
An excerpt from aspiring author Takudzwa Gezi’s debut book They Never Come Back.
ith the introduction of a new currency in our country, I saw myself going back to school in 2009. I had my ‘O’ level exams that year. The year went by fast. I was a bit reckless during the final days and I spent all the money I had on me, including the bus fare. So as usual I called mummy and told her of my ‘problem’. She told me to “grow up and make a plan”. I never made one. So I went in to write the biology exam … my last one. Being the smart kid I am I finished about 15 minutes before the set end time. I began making my plan then. I decided to ask my friend’s folks to give me a ride. The first thing I saw on my way out of that exam room was my sister, my mother then … my BROTHER! I jumped on to him and hugged him like I’d do to a long lost lover. After four years I saw my brother. Happy does not describe adequately how I felt. However, part of me was meeting a stranger. We had two weeks of bonding. We had meals as a family. As in the old days we shared my room. My brother had a beard now. He was trying to catch up with the colloquial language now. He still called me by my childhood nickname but I was 16 then. My brother only stayed home for two weeks and returned to the Diaspora. My aunt hardly called by then. She had been gone for 9 years now and never came back … Same with her friend Tariro. Her father’s ride was
THEY NEVER COME BACK TA KUDZWA GEZI
parked now most of the time. He washed the car everyday but it was always breaking down on the road – if it wasn’t the computer box it was the ball joints – he even struggled to oil the car engine now. The Peugeot 406 now sounded like a jet. You could hear it roaring a kilometre away. Mr Rimuka and assumed he was a single lonely old guy. His wife came back at most twice a year. Dan had been gone for more than a year now. His wife was now working the night shift at some nightclub to make ends meet. Mr Rimuka was not happy about his daughter in law working at a club and doing the night shift as well but at least she paid school fees for the kids and clothed them proper. Dan came back home that year. He brought home some groceries and the cell phones as usual. No Christian would buy those cell phones. He told his wife to quit that job. He was visibly a druggie by now – all the signs … black lips, red eyes, yellow fingers and he bit his nails. After a while he was broke again and
THE POVO JOURNAL November 2014
his wife would have to hustle to find money for Broncho or else he would fall sick. Dan now resorted to stealing gadgets in town to earn money for drugs. He returned back to SA as Zimbabwe life got harder for him. Two years down the line we had social media sites, Facebook and whatsapp. Communication was easier and cheaper now. Look at how technology modernized family life … we had a family group on Facebook and even on whatsapp! That year my aunt said she was coming back home. Everyone was like ‘okay,
Two years down the line we had social media sites, Facebook and whatsapp. Communication was easier and cheaper now. DOWNLOAD http://bit.ly/1zdoBEB
we’ve heard it before’. After so many years, no one believed it. She did come back though. I didn’t know what to feel when she came back. I was at school that November and for 3 weeks. I waited for her visit but alas! she was rather unavailable for me. It all came back to me, the promises and all but she didn’t come to see me. My final exams were only weeks away but I went home that weekend
to see my aunt. She was away with her boyfriend when I got home. I only got to see her on Sunday and I had to get back to school that day. I had waited for this moment 10 years. It’s a moment I don’t remember clearly, we hardly spent 30 minutes together and she had to leave for some braai and I had to get back to school. With every ticking second I failed to salvage that childhood fantasy of being reunited … a hopeless venture on my part. It’s not that the conversation was one sided, no. It’s just that I wasn’t the kid that used to wear matching clothes with Prince. I wasn’t sure she missed me as much as I missed her. She wasn’t looking forward to rekindle the flame when she planned to come back. This reunion suffocated any trace of what used to be. That day confirmed it! THEY NEVER COME BACK. Tariro never returned home. Her father’s ride was now a monument. I guess the only reason he kept it was that it reminded him of his daughter. They had pictures of Tariro all over their house now, like inscriptions on tombstones to remind you of the loved ones long lost. They even had pictures of her children on the walls as well. They kept her pictures, but they had lost Tariro. Prince was now addicted to marijuana. His mother tried to stop him but perhaps she came back too late for him. Mrs Rimuka was never home as well. Apparently Dan was in prison again. This time rumour had it he would be in for a span. His wife was doing the night again. She had to feed the kids. We all wondered if he would ever come back.
10TH Anniversary Edition
A Social Media Journey RUTENDO MUTSAMWIRA POET / WRITER @RuTendoDeNise
y social media journey began in 2003 when I was still a junior at Chisipite Senior School. We had regular classes on Computer Skills, ICDL and the Internet. Hi5 was the first social networking site I quickly got addicted to.
Once that phase came and passed, I was onto the next big thing: Facebook. I am and always was looking for ways to contribute fresh, relevant content online and so when I arrived at Monash South Afrika in 2008, I created the Facebook group “iRep MONASH”. This was also mainly due to the fact that there was no platform for student interaction online. I also noticed that the majority of students on campus spent more time on their phones. iRep Monash eventually snow balled into the online hub for campus news, updates and interaction. It is also the reason why I was elected into the Monash University South Afrika Student Association (MUSASA) as Media Liaison Officer for 2011. In 2012, I became the first Zimbabwean to virtually cover an event using the social networking phenomenon Twitter. At that time, I had created a Twitter handle @ K n o w Yo u r Z i m b o s . T h e sole aim of this handle was to provide “140 Character based networking exclusive to Zimbabweans on Twitter”. Zimbabwe Fashion Week enlisted my services, and
became the first event in Zimbabwe to have virtual coverage of it’s’ event. The result of this was extremely exciting. What we managed to achieve was not only awareness and brand visibility of an event of that magnitude virtually, we also managed to share what was happening back home to our brothers and sisters in the Diaspora. In just a series of tweets we shared a fragment of home. That still humbles me. I believe social media, if used meaningfully has the power to not only change your life. It enables you to reach and realize your goals and dreams. One of my dreams was to record a single, just to hear how my voice sounds behind the mic! I have been writing poetry since I was in the sixth form and used various social media platforms to share my work. In 2011, I collaborated with Tanzanian Photographer Rosiah Marie in a creative challenge titled R.i.O: The Journey. This was a fusion of Rosiah’s photography and my poetry. It was a three dimensional experience we blogged about and shared with our following. This is when my musical opportunity arose! I was approached by Tanzanian/ Zimbabwean producer John “Reverb 7” Mahalu who wanted
I believe social media, if used meaningfully has the power to not only change your life. It enables you to reach and realize your goals and dreams. 64
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to fuse my poetry with house music. I later recorded my first single Looking For Love with Fungai Nengare. We performed the single as the closing act for Zimbabwe Fashion Week 2011. This was my first stage performance in my life! I was so nervous but I just went with flow! The following year, I met Clifford “Riffi” Machingaifa virtually and two weeks later we had formed the musical duo M&R., fusing of song and poetry. We shared our music virtually and our single MuNyepi was well received and we were profiled by Afrika Magic Entertainment’s show Star Gist. Thereafter, we closed Zimbabwe Fashion Week 2012. In the same year, I also collaborated with the exceptionally talented percussionist Theresa Muteta to record a single for Zimbabwean designer Sabina Mutsvati titled “Cheukwa”. We performed this single at
Zimbabwe Fashion Week for her collection and were later invited to perform at the Mercedes Benz Afrika Fashion Awards in October 2012. More recently, Cheukwa was featured at the Caribbean Fashion Week in Kingston, Jamaica. Currently, I am working on another creative challenge called #RWrites. This, as with everything else I have done is a virtually initiated and inspired project. I am using social media as a gifting mechanism. Through Twitter and the #RWrites hash tag, I have managed to write customized poems for my followers. I would randomly tweet my followers and ask them to tweet me the first word that comes to their mind. I would then write a customized poem for them based on their bio, and a series of their tweets. I have written 160 poems using #RWrites so far and will be including these in my anthology which I am planning on publishing in 2016.
Home of mushrooms in Zimbabwe where mushroom is the language Training & Consultancy | Mushroom Spawn | Growing kits Types of mushrooms we specialise in include Oyster mushroom, Button mushroom, Shiitake and King oyster mushroom
Cell: 0773 842 677 Email:email@example.com Twitter: @mushtella Facebook: Mushtella Specialty Mushrooms www.mushtella.com 10TH Anniversary Edition
L I T E R AT U R E
Publishing on a Shoestring NJABU MBONO PUBLISHING ASSISTANT
hen I was asked to make a brief contribution about publishing, and bookselling to celebrate Povo’s tenth anniversary, I was excited at the thought of sharing our experiences. However, although publishing in Zimbabwe has been a dynamic and thriving industry, these days one cannot talk of Zimbabwean publishing without a measure of uncertainty about what the future holds in store. The Period of Crisis Today, there are three main textbook publishers in the c o u n t r y : Co l l e g e P re s s , Zimbabwe Publishing House, and Longman Zimbabwe which now trades as CPS Consultus, a distributor rather than a publisher, and several smaller ones such as Quest Publishers, Priority Projects, and Lleemon Publishers. To complete the picture we have Mambo Press, the main indigenous languages publisher, and three small general publishers, Weaver Press, ama’Books, and Baobab Books, which appears defunct in all but name. The creation of an ‘unconducive’ publishing environment over the years is rooted in the country’s sociopolitical and economic decline. For the publishing industry and other business sectors alike, inflation has undoubtedly been the greatest concern. At its worst the annual inflation rate soared to over 231 million per cent in July 2008. Imagine paying Z$3 trillion – the equivalent of US $0.50 – for
Reflections on Zimbabwean publishing and bookselling. a single trip to work on public transport, or Z$6 trillion for a loaf of bread. Printers wouldn’t hold their prices for more than an hour and had to be paid in advance in US dollars. And, while this was illegal, it was common practise as one could not work in local dollars that devalued every hour. As a result even price control policies were irrelevant and having a price list was a waste of time. That publishers survived this manic period is a reflection of the Zimbabwean spirit. Nonetheless, the impact on publishers was severe. With the maximum bank withdrawal not enough to buy a loaf of bread, let alone a book, a lot of professionals fled the country in search of the proverbial ‘greener pastures’. The reading and book-buying public, small as it was, was decimated. In order to survive bookshops became more like garages, a one-stop place to refuel with essential or prescribed texts. If a school found the money to order five copies of Chairman of Fools from a bookshop, the bookshop ordered five copies from the publisher. It did not order six, to put one on the shelf for display, or so that teachers could pick it up, read the blurb and the first few pages, and make up their own minds. Bookshops ceased to be places where one could go to browse and find a book of one’s choice to read for pleasure or for information, and their staff generally did not read either, so if you asked for advice, they didn’t know. Bookshops did not hold events such as book-
signings or authors’ readings, nor did they promote new or award-winning titles in their window displays, even when they were given free material. 2014, Where do we stand? The Global Political Agreement (GPA), signed on 15 September 2008, came into effect in 2009. This brought about an element of stability with the introduction of a m u lt i p l e c u r re n c y economy, which has seen the US dollar becoming the ‘main’ trade currency.
While one in a hundred people wants to be published, only one in twenty thousand will buy a book. At Weaver Press, we have a ‘rule’ requesting young authors who bring us their manuscripts for consideration, as they do every week, to buy a book as a sign of their support for other authors, for the value of reading, and for the publishing industry in general. (We have books costing as little as US$5, so one is not talking about a huge investment.) The request is quite often met with resistance, and the all too familiar response, Ah no but
Bookshops ceased to be places where one could go to browse and find a book of one’s choice to read for pleasure or for information, and their staff generally did not read either, so if you asked for advice, they didn’t know. The GPA also saw attempts by various donors through UNESCO to resuscitate the education system. About US$50 million was made available for the purchase of primary school textbooks. But after over a year of discussions – dominated by the ‘big 3’ – all of the money went to one publisher, and most of the books were printed outside the country, leaving the local print industry with very little benefit from the funding. Very few people buy books, and the attitude towards reading has become increasingly reductionist: it is only necessary for passing exams. But the number of unsolicited manuscripts has certainly increased over the years.
books are expensive! But then the question is, who will buy your book? And again comes another familiar response, Ah everyone will buy my book. It will be a best-seller! Books are not a popular priority. Because of the low value placed upon them, people have a perception that they are expensive and although sometimes they are, this has more to do with priorities. For instance people are prepared to spend $12 for a pizza or $10 for a six-pack of ciders, but not $10 for a book. Unfortunately, marketing and promotion have very little effect on sales. After Shimmer Chinodya won the NOMA Award – judged by a panel of
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10TH Anniversary Edition
L I T E R AT U R E
« FROM PAGE 66 Publishing on a Shoestring
have therefore stuck to what we are good at.
Afrikan scholars and writers from across the continent – for Strife, we received very nice coverage in the national daily newspaper, The Herald. Shimmer was on television and the radio. We put a sticker on all the books announcing the award. We rang the bookshops and asked them if they wanted to do a special window display. As a result of this activity, and some investment, we sold only one copy of the book. People congratulated Shimmer, they congratulated us, but they did not buy.
However, I think it can be argued that serious books are not what people want. We live in hard times, when escapist literature of all kinds is needed – thrillers, adventure stories, romances, and science fiction. But when people are going through hard times, they tend to write about these hard times, and in this way we have a fictional record of a difficult period in our history. On the other hand, we have never received a good Zimbabwean thriller. Perhaps if we did, we would publish it.
or sink’, is what we have told ourselves. In order to embrace and utilize technology, we have engaged various web platforms to try and sell our books. Although sales are not high, we hope to at least make all our books accessible and affordable on a wide range of platforms.
Very few people buy books, and the attitude towards reading has become increasingly reductionist: it is only necessary for passing exams.
The question that perhaps everyone is asking is, how does a small publisher survive in such an environment? Our experiences have led us to adopt several strategies that focus on our strengths and constantly play to them. Firstly, we have tried to develop a distinctive identity; we cannot be all things to all people. We
As a backdrop to all this, several donors have been sympathetic towards small publishers and acknowledge their efforts, so we occasionally receive funding to put books into schools and libraries, or to subsidise production costs. In terms of bookselling, we have had to look for alternative means of selling our books. We now work closely with various cultural institutions such as the Book Café, Delta Gallery and the National Art Gallery of Zimbabwe, who are happy to sell our books on consignment. We also use informal markets such as conferences and craft fairs. With the advent of the web, the traditional publishing industry has also witnessed some very interesting changes. Almost anyone can now self-publish a book into all sorts of formats. This new development has threatened the traditional publishing industry. ‘Adapt
THE POVO JOURNAL November 2014
DESIGN » BABUSI NYONI
Another challenge that continues to drain whatever little life is left in the publishing industry is widespread copyright infringement. Although legislation does exist in the form of the Zimbabwe Copyright and Neighbouring Rights Act and a copyright management organization (Zimcopy), there is no enforcement. Schools and tertiary institutions are the greatest copyright users and worst infringers. Photocopying is not viewed as criminal, but rather as a necessity, which is perhaps a secondary effect of not having bookshops.
As to why we want to survive, we feel strongly what we have to offer is both unique and important. Fiction is often a good way of telling untold truths and in this way we provide a vibrant but alternative voice in a society.
» PHOTOGRAPHY 10TH Anniversary Edition
Visual Arts Circus
LISTED IN DESCENDING ORDER BASED ON POPULARITY
OUR MOST MEMORABLE ACT WAS BUSI NCUBE & EDITH WE UTONGA
EACH YEAR THE HIFA LOGO IS TRANSFORMED TO REFLECT THE CURRENT THEME FOR THAT YEAR.
Local and international performers
We can hear the indiginisation bell ringing 70
THE POVO JOURNAL November 2014
62000 SOLD A further 4,000 given away
Imagine! It took the same time to create the whole world
Laid end to end, the blood vessels in an average human body will stretch approximately 62,000 miles or 2 times around the earth.
HARARE INTERNATIONAL FESTIVAL OF THE ARTS
HIFA is an annual festival and workshop programme that showcases the very best of local, regional and international arts and culture in a comprehensive festival programme. HIFA has come to be seen as an important symbol of something positive about Zimbabwe. The Festival has received recognition for its support of arts and culture in Zimbabwe and is seen as a major contributor to development in this area. HIFA is now the largest cultural event in Zimbabwe. It has gained local and international media praise on many fronts. This year's festival was the biggest to date.
$5 for half
a chicken! Equivalent to R45, gets you 2kgs of chicken thighs
FUNDS 14 COME FROM CORPORATE SPONSORS, FOREIGN EMBASSIES, SMALL COMPANIES , DONORS
NONE COME FROM GOVERNMENT
But they allow the festival to go ahead which is worth more money than they can donate to the festival
Neither PRESIDENT ROBERT Mugabe nor EX prime minister, Morgan Tsvangirai, has EVER attended the festival!
Cameras by Tribe
though cooler, were outnumbered
Unifying socially and culturally disparate groups of Zimbabweans at a time of ideological conflict and political uncertainty bringing huge audiences together to celebrate something positive â€“ the healing and constructive capacity of the arts. ...for six days only
#HIFA2013 189630 DAYS The official hashtag
The Zimbabwe Race demographics are loosely based on the actual population figures, whilst the HIFA figures are based on what we saw at the venues that we went to. The Statistics for twitter were taken on the 16th of May 2013. The various different sources we used to come up with this data. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/De_Stijl + http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2013/may/09/harare-arts-festival-image-zimbabwe + http://www.hifa.co.zw/about/ + http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Arts_festivals + http://www.thirdworldbunfight.co.za/productions/hifa-opening-shows.html + http://allafrica.com/stories/201305091028.html + http://timeforchange.org/what-is-a-carbon-footprint-definition + http://answers.yahoo.com/question/index?qid=20100825061945AAz8GJH + http://haywire-the-traveling-cat.over-blog.com/article-hifa-starts-with-a-bang-72617875.html
2086 tweets for such a huge festival? The carbon footprint of #HIFA2013 was 53.60g of CO2. A carbon footprint is the total amount of greenhouse gases produced to directly and indirectly support human activities, usually expressed in equivalent tons of carbon dioxide (CO2). Unfortunately we will have to increase our footprint next year.
INSPIRED BY PIET MONDRIAN OF THE DE STIJL MOVEMENT 1917 - 1931 10TH Anniversary Edition
Is Satire the New Protest? Zviri kumbofamba sei?
RUMBIDZAI DUBE LAWYER / BLOGGER @dubbydacious
eople often ask why Zimbabweans speak of a repressive government when freedom ‘of’ expression is guaranteed in the Constitution and articles such as mine can be published. However, they often overlook that freedom ‘of’ expression does not guarantee freedom ‘after’ expression. Citizens only get clarity on
Satire: “The use of humour, irony, exaggeration, or ridicule to expose and criticise people’s stupidity or vices.” Protest: “A statement or action expressing disapproval of or objection to something.” protest. In satire we have found expression, saying things we would dare not say openly; and Richard Matimba popularly known as “Uncle Richie” has opened or rather widened the doors to our exercise of this freedom.
with so much hidden meaning that those who block our protests on the streets become ignorant participants in spreading the word of our protest. In satire we have found expression. whether their thoughts and words fit within the political establishment’s version and understanding of freedom ‘of’ expression when they get a response befitting the impact of their words. Such a ‘response’ often consists of ‘visits’ to police cells in other words unlawful detention and often extends to bruises and broken bones for those who dare go onto the street to protest. So, since we can’t go on the street and hold placards or march and get our voices heard; we (Zimbabweans) have taken to our creative juices; letting our grievances out in the flow of our words; words often spoken so eloquently; with so much hidden meaning that those who block our protests on the streets become ignorant participants in spreading the word of our
Mbiri yavo ndeyei? What is Uncle Richie’s fame? Uncle Richie is the brains behind the “unotoshaya kuti zviri kumbofamba sei” craze that has hit Zimbabwe. In polite terms his message is “what exactly is going on” but in liberated speech what he means is: what the f*** is going on?!!!” Nowadays, every statement and joke among Zimbabweans is punctuated with this statement. The message began as an audio recording circulating on WhatsApp (a cross-platform mobile messaging App which allows people to exchange messages without having to pay for SMS.) When one first listens to it, the audio sounds like the incomprehensible rantings of a drunkard.
THE POVO JOURNAL November 2014
The words are mumbled in a slur; the thoughts sound disjointed and discordant, unrelated even, what one would call mumbo jumbo. But upon listening more carefully, one gets Uncle Richie’s crazy wisdom. In Uncle Richie’s words is a fascinating exercise of agency in which he strings together narratives of the economy, society and politics. He talks of people getting haircuts in butcheries (Unotoona vamwe vachitogerwa zuda mumabutcherYou see people getting haircuts in butcheries) [who does that?!]. He hints at the dearth in leadership and true representation of constituencies in Parliament (Wotoona kuti ah vanhu vese pa..vanotoshaya mumiriri anotovamiririra…And then you see that all the people at… cannot find leaders to represent them). He talks of the lack of transparency and accountability in Parliament as a representative body as citizens are left wondering what exactly Parliament’s business is (Pavanozodiscusser m u Pa r l i a m e n t v a n e n g e vachitodiscusser nenyaya dzei-In Parliament, you really wonder what they will be discussing). He goes further to explore issues of social justice; from the rampant lack of decent housing
(unotoshaya kuti vamwe vari kutoshaya dzimbaand then you can’t get how some people do not have houses); food to eat (vamwe vanenge vadya makusenisome would have had food in the morning); proper health care (vamwe vanoto.. vanotoshandisa Vicks kana vachida kuti flu yavo iite kakudzikira- some use Vicks if they want their flu to get better) to lack of clean and safe water (vanotochera mvura mumigodhi- they fetch water from wells). Added to all the obvious confusion caused by the governance deficit, Uncle Richie expresses his confusion at the unusual events that have baffled mankind; Zimbabweans included making us all wonder what our world has come to. First the inexplicable and mysterious disappearance of an Indian man in Mt Nyanga, in Zimbabwe (vamwe hanzi akwira mugomo ashaikwasome are said to have climbed up a mountain and disappeared) and the strange disappearance of Malaysian Flight MH370 (hanzi yatoshaikwa ndege yachothey say that the plane can’t be found). Through his satirical skit, Uncle Richie paints a clear picture of the acute discord that characterises our economic, social and political landscape, both nationally and globally. As millions of Zimbabweans share the audio, and laugh at Uncle Richie’s words his message continues to build a shared consensus that something
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» ILLUSTRATION 10TH Anniversary Edition
« FROM PAGE 72 Is Satire The New Protest?
is wrong with our society. Through his words, he builds confidence for agency and legitimises the idea that it is only right to talk about all these injustices and unusual events. And so when the police chief, Commissioner Chihuri collapsed and claimed he fainted because he wore the wrong shoe on the wrong foot, Zimbabweans asked “Zviri kumbofamba sei?” How does a whole general mistake left from right? Kupfeka banana here shuwa? When we all heard that members of the Apostolic Faith Johane Masowe Sect had beaten up police officers, we asked-Zviri kumbofamba sei? Many felt that the police had it coming given their history of brutality against unarmed civilians. Others wondered if we were progressing into a state of lawlessness. We all grit our teeth, pedestrians and motorists alike as the vehicles that take us from point A to B, plod through potholes and ask; Zviri kumbofamba sei? How come our roads [with the exception of a few] are not getting fixed when revenue is being collected on the roads day and night? Isn’t that why police have waged a war against combis; to ensure that the combis comply with all road regulations including paying for operating licenses? Or do our police just get a kick out of smashing private vehicles’ windscreens for no apparent reason? And when it emerged that a man had been arrested for setting his dogs on wild animals in the President’s backyard, we asked- Zviri kumbofamba sei? The President has deer in his backyard? Wow! When I grow up I also want to have deer in my backyard.
And when we had halfn aked Brazil ian dan cers paraded during the Carnival; Zimbabweans asked -Zviri kumbofamba sei? How do we as a society still have people who cat-call and wolf-whistle at women wearing short skirts or dresses yet we have naked women paraded on our streets as part of a “cultural event?” We also hear of miracle money, miracle gold, miracle weight loss and miracle babies in this era of prophets or “profiteers” as some would call them and ask; Zviri kumbofamba sei? Are these men of God or men of gold? When we heard that popular Sungura music artist, Alick Macheso was using a traditional unorthodox method of curing his daughter’s fontanelle (nhova) by inserting his penis in his daughter’s mouth we all asked; Zviri kumbofamba sei? Was there no other way of curing her? Should a daughter ever suffer the misfortune of seeing her father’s privates? Again when we heard about the internal fights within both the major political parties; Tsvangirai has fired Biti or Biti has fired Tsvangirai or is Mnangagwa going to take over from Mugabe or is it going to
One thing remains constant; using the Zviri kumbofamba sei? phrase, as Zimbabweans we are naming and shaming the rot and those responsible for it in our politics, economy and society. I am inclined to agree with Erica Chenoweth and Maria Stephan’s who both argue (in their book called Civil Resistance Works: The Strategic Logic of NonViolent Conflict) that, the assumption that the most effective and forceful way of waging political struggle is through violence or the threat of it, is not true. It takes high levels of participation by members of the population for any struggle to succeed because anything that enhances the population’s resilience, invokes public loyalty, inspires the majority and is grounded in local mobilisation is bound to succeed. Zviri kumbofamba sei? does that. We have created a homegrown movement with high levels of participation by ordinary Zimbabweans in which we are saying “this is ridiculous” to things that are ridiculous or “get your act together” to those who need to do so. We might not be toyi-toying on the streets but in our numbers as we pass
We live in a very patriarchal society where women are expected to play the subservient and supporting role and women are viewed as objects to be taken care of and not to be financially empowered lest they get too wayward without a man’s guidance. be Mujuru; then we heard Mujuru never shot down a helicopter during the liberation struggle- we all asked; Zviri kumbofamba sei? We were left wondering- whose narrative should we believe? Which narrative of history is true? What is the future of our country with such messy politics?
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the messages from phone to phone, one WhatsApp message to the next we are certainly getting heard. The icing on the cake; even those who would ordinarily arrest us for saying these things are passing along the messages; either they have caught onto the dominant spirit or they are just too dense
to get its import. But whatever their reasons, I felt- sitting in my house- that satire has indeed become the new protest in Zimbabwean society? Below is a full transcript of Uncle Ritchie’s First Zviri kumbofamba sei skit Unotoona vamwe vachitogerwa zuda mumabutcher (You see people getting haircuts in butcheries) Vamwe vachitoseka (While others are laughing) Wotonzwa vamwe…vamwe… vachitochema (Then you hear others crying) Uchitoona…unotoona kuti pamwe vanhu vacho vanenge vakatosiyana siyana (Then you see that maybe the people are different) Unotonzwa vanhu vachitoita ruzha (You hear some people making noise) Vamwe vachitoita zvinhu zvekuti unotoshaya kuti vanhu vari kutombozvi…zvifambisa sei (And others will be doing things that make you wonder what exactly is going on) Unototadza kutozvinzwisisa kutoti (You fail to understand that…) Uno unotoona vanhu vachitomhanya (You see people running) Vamwe vachitongoramba vakamira (While others remain standing) Wotoshaya kuti..kuti zvese vanenge vachida kuti zvizoitwe sei (Then you wonder that..ah… how do they they want things to work out) Vana makanika unotoona vachitosangana pamwechete (You see the mechanics coming together in one place) Vana hwindi kana wotonzwa vakutoti yeee uyeee (Then you hear the touts shouting yay oh yay)
» TO PAGE 76
» PAINTING 10TH Anniversary Edition
Zimbabwe on Behance
« FROM PAGE 74 Is Satire The New Protest?
Vamwe vanoto vanotoshandisa Vicks kana vachida kuti flu yavo iite kakudzikira (Others use Vicks if they want their flu to get better) Masimba Madondo
Vanotomboshaya kuti ah vamwe vanotoshaya… (They wonder what..ah some wonder) Vanotochera mi..mvura ne.. mumigodhi (They fetch water from wells) Ah utotototi zvinhu zvacho ah zviri kumbofamba sei (Then you wonder what exactly is going on)
Vamwe hanzi akwira mugomo ashaikwa (Some say someone climbed up a mountain and disappeared) Ah zvinhu zvacho utototi anhu ah handitombonzwisisi kutoti ah (Ah,,,these things,,,you say people,,,ah,, I can’t understand what,,,)
Hanzi yatoshaikwa ndege yacho(It is said, that the plane has disappeared) Ah ah woto…kuda kuzvibatanidza zvinhu zvacho soo wotoona kuti ah (Ah then you…trying to piece these things together, then you see that…)
Uchitoshaya kuti Ah zvinhu zvacho zviri kutombofamba sei (And you wonder what exactly is going on) Wotoona kuti ah vanhu vese pa..vanotoshaya mumiriri anotovamiririra kuitira kuti (And then you see that all the people at… cannot find leaders to represent them so that…) Pavanozodiscusser muParliament vanenge vachitodiscusser nenyaya
dzei (In Parliament, you really wonder what they will be discussing) Ndopaunotoshamisika kuti nyaya yacho yakatomira sei (And then you wonder, what exactly is this story) Zvinhu zvacho hazvi hazvi hazvina..hazvitombonzwisisiki (You can’t understand these things) Vanotoshaya kuti vamwe vari
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kutoshaya dzimba (And then you can’t understand how some people do not have houses) Ah vari kuto ah vari kuto to ah vari kutoshaya ah kuti zvakatombomira sei (Ah they are..they are..they are wondering how things are) Va m w e v a n e n g e v a d y a makuseni (Some would have had food in the morning)
Zvotonetsa zvinhu zvacho (These things are difficult to understand) Ah hamheno kuti to.. to.. tinganyatsozvibatanidza sei kuti zvinhu zvacho (I don’t know if we should…should…how do we bring these things together) Tinyatso nyatso nyatsonzwisisa kuti zvinhu zvinenge zvakatonyatsofamba sei (So we fully…fully understand how things happened) Unoti ah mupfungwa macho munenge ndimo makutonzvenga (You then think to yourself, maybe my brains are playing tricks one me)
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Afrikan Comics: What Lies Beyond the Spear and Animal Hide EUGENE MAPONDERA DIGITAL ARTIST @Eugene_Ramirez
will be talking more on the issue of modernising and making our character designs for Afrikan characters more modern and more sophisticated. This article is closely related to my previous (and some what controversial )article which talked about what I called the Afrikan character disaster.
For the benefit of those who did not get an opportunity to read the article, It asserted that the majority of today’s comic book professionals or character designers of Afrikan heritage have ignored the idea that Afrikan characters can be represented as modern or sophisticated. It explored the idea that universal knowledge such as science mathematics (which is largely independent of culture because it is simply factual information) has been disregarded by these creatives to such an extent that electricity, magnetism, machinery , mathematics, and simple writing seem to be excluded from Afrikan characters designed by Afrikan comic book artists. A controversial comparison is made in the article when the example of Japanese Manga such as Neon Genesis Evangelion or Bleach is cited to demonstrate how a country which is rich in its own culture such as Japan with its Kimono attire , Katana swords and Geisha girls can turn around and contribute so greatly to the world of pop culture and art by creating what is now known as the Giant
Wouldn’t it be awesome to see an Afrikan character design by an Afrikan artist in which his armor covers his body and is made of indestructible minerals from Zimbabwe. Robot Genre of film and comic books which inspired international block buster movies such as Pacific Rim and the Transformers franchise. Being an Afrikan comic book artist and educator in the field of animation and character design I’m interested in how we can move on from the portrayal and the depiction of Afrikan characters in a rather historic and backward manner. Most depictions focus on the stereotypical dressing, activities such as raiding, war, hunting and sooth saying, while only exploring cultural and
I challenged the reader with a task to find an Afrikan character design by an Afrikan which exhibited a man or woman with a battery operated tool, or device or a protagonist who had more knowledge of science rather than he had mystic abilities. 78
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traditional roles such as that of the domesticated woman (wearing hides ) , the hunter or warrior alpha- male (who will also happen to be dressed in hides and a mandatory spear). My point is not to shun our heritage but to challenge our thinking and creativity because the entire world has demonstrated many times over that our ideas are always going to be challenged by the movement of time and as we live through these changing times we as creatives need to adapt and embrace them so as to give birth to ideas that are relevant and practical to our changing audiences. It is only through this creative growth and acceptance of modernisation, technology, science and intellect that we can introduce trends in our character designs in the same way that our Asian counterparts making history through Manga have done. In my previous article I challenged the reader with a task to find an Afrikan character design by an Afrikan which exhibited a man or woman with a battery operated tool, or device or a protagonist who had more knowledge of science rather than he had mystic abilities. It would be great for example to see a hero who plays an electrical Mbira while sporting a pair of headphones with animal skin. It would be awesome to see an Afrikan character design
by an Afrikan comic book artist in which his armour covers his body and is comprised of indigenous rocks and indestructible minerals from Zimbabwe. As much as these ideas may be wild they are only limited by our imaginations as comic book artists. Our Afrikan cultures, dressing and activities go beyond the stereotypes. Since our society has its own craftsmen such as iron smiths, builders , healers or medicine men, philosophers, musicians and artists we cannot narrow down our designs or limit our creativity by subscribing to very unflattering stereotypes. The rest of the world (not just Europe and USA ) has explored so many archetypes in their character designs. From students to law enforcers, and from mad scientists to plumbers. However we have depended and relied on only a few Afrikan archetypes, mainly the hunter or warrior (the occasional footballer) and the domesticated woman (with really short hair and usually topless) . Since we can conclude and hopefully agree that the Afrikan culture has a lot to borrow from society, science, and the greater world which our fore fathers were not exposed to in the way that we are, I believe our Afrikan comic book characters, animated characters and mascots shouldn’t fit a mould which reflects western expectations and stereotypes but should express and expose how knowledgeable, intelligent and creative we are as a people.
10TH Anniversary Edition
The Ugly One
My ire is neither directed at Rick (who I admire) nor PRINT magazine per se, rather at the publishers of the book PRETTY UGLY. I find their choice of a Black model extremely offensive and insensitive to all black people everywhere. I am contacting all my black designer friends to join me in protesting this obvious affront to us. Please pass this on to as many of us as possible so when we contact them, we speak with one voice.
Quote “I find their choice of a Black model extremely offensive and insensitive to all Black people everywhere.”
Saartjie Baartman “Hottentot Venus” comes to mind and I know that I’m not being overly sensitive here.
The Context My indignation which is steeped in history: the image of our people has been used and (or) manipulated negatively and some of these stereotypes persist today. The popularity of phenomena like bleaching of the skin, weaves, etc. are reminders of this. We are force-fed a white standard of beauty which implies that all things “black” are ugly. That book is published in Europe and for a European
am a bit out of the design loop working in other areas of the creative world, but it is nice to know there is a community out there paying attention to these things. Thanks for starting this conversation
audience and the contents is about European designers, so why use a BLACK model? We are a tiny minority of the population over there. I am offended by this combination because I am reminded of the pain and humiliation suffered by our mothers and sisters at the hands of the slave master and the coloniser.
The responses in this article were received in a conversation in the email and through a survey on Twitter by black designers. All names were taken out including that of the originator of the post. 80
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The Responses Personally I take issue with the use of scantily clad to nude women of any race, period. I would protest against the exploitation of women. I am not offended on the grounds of race. I did a survey of designers and others from various backgrounds on my Twitter list and all are black. I sent out the questionnaire before I saw the context which was clarified later on. On the long term, instead of protesting lets set up our own publishing houses and push our agenda, else we will always be watchers, waiting for the next offence to make our move instead of blazing a trail and changing perceptions. Dictate how we want to be perceived.
idn’t find it especially offensive as the focus wasn’t as much on colour as it was on conceptions of femininity and strength. Otherwise the colour contrasts are quite aesthetic. I suppose I could possibly have a different take if the image was accompanied by messaging that invokes a racial undertone.
t doesn’t really matter, I cant even see if its a black or white. Lets find other wars to fight, unless if I’m looking at a different picture.
aybe I’m missing something. I think it’s a beautiful cover. I think we could be a tad overly sensitive here and who says that the girl is black, if she was very dark I wouldn’t dispute it but at this rate she could even be Indian that’s besides the point because I think she’s beautiful AFTER THE CONTEXT I would imagine for someone so convicted, your friend would want to first criticise the very magazines we see on our shelves, published by ourselves with covers of women with weaves. True Love, Destiny, all of them. We can’t keep oppressing ourselves when we now know so much about ourselves and then start looking for the smallest incidence that supposedly reminds us of slavery and spending our energies on that. I feel his philosophy is better applied elsewhere.
’d like to get a good look at the entire book not just the cover to see the nature of the material inside for context. Should the critique be more thorough? Actually my first reaction was not to take it too seriously, not to dismiss the issue brought up, but the cover itself was so ugly and so poorly designed I wondered how the authors defined “ugly.” Has anyone seen the entire book? I wonder if the best way to register any negative comments are letters to the editor and the book’s publisher. A large protest might give an otherwise poor book more attention than it deserves and enough letters from those that are offended will make a strong point.
es and no - Yes because why didn’t they use other creed or colour, are they suggesting that black is ugly. No, because what if the designer or editor is black themselves and they were innocent or even if they were white and just thought a black model would compliment the background colour! Tell you what I really find offensive is the car track TV campaign that keeps showing black people as thieves!!! Outright racism!
guess I should be outraged but I have seen so many of these images in fashion where the black body is “violated”. This is actually mild compared to others. I think the best approach to this maybe to write a letter to the editor and publisher of the book after reading the contents.
ah, not even. Well I think the black body is pretty. Don’t think it’d been the same effect with a white female. If it was an ugly black female, then yea, it probably would have been offensive. AFTER THE CONTEXT But even when it comes to issues of beauty, it’s almost mostly black women that side of cosmetics, beauty products, fashion models e.t.c I mean that even in , they got mostly black women representing beauty and all... But hey, I really pay no attention to racial issues... I believe its just basic human nature to segregate.
think intention is important if a white person was used then would that be okay? Would that mean there is a hidden agenda and message to white people what are we so afraid that we do not want to be associated with anything ugly, we are not perfect are we? Are we not capable of ugly? Also couldn’t the model, just like with a lot of marketing advertising have been used because it works. Its pretty catchy and colour and hence works with the cover? Is it not a case of seeing evil perhaps where there is none, or the fact that we are so self guarded that we then react to a different truth. The truth is yes we have to guard our identity and avoid letting people demonise and devalue us, but we also need to not turn all stories into them against us. This is different from the Nivea ad that was pulled in the US the specifically target us as black people in context to our history, slavery and discrimination, so unless the intention was to directly attack a people, and take away from a value I don’t think its something we need to go to arms over I would never do that a black person, or encourage it, but I also do not see that obviousness in witch it violets me as a black, without looking too much into it the girl, (face covered) would never be called ugly I think. So maybe the emphasis was more on her being half exposed and having her face covered, as a way of showing the rebellious side of things. Would a sexy face and breast been much more direct, and or showing an (Ugly black person?)
am also from the fashion industry. Although I might understand the inclusion of a Black person in the design aesthetic this book is addressing. I would personally prefer that the point of including an image of a Black woman was made in the interior of the book with other examples providing context as opposed to placing her on the cover with the somewhat vague title Pretty Ugly. That is my two cents.
Dear Everybody Okay, it seems like the BIG thing that came out of this is that there are quite a lot of us out there (FYI I know folks in the USA, UK, the Caribbean, Europe and Australia and of course right here on the continent) it was interesting to hear the different viewpoints. Maybe we all stay connected and inspire one another from time to time with some thought provoking subject or idea? I’d love that. So maybe we give ourselves a name? Right now I’m going to go through each response and digest. A BIG thanks to all those who responded. There’s strength in numbers.
10TH Anniversary Edition
Masai girl VALERIE SHAMU GRAPHIC DESIGNER / PHOTOGRAPHER
asai was inspired by the beauty of African tribes. I have always looked at the Masai tribe as the â€œsuper modelsâ€? of all the African tribes. Striking in their appearance, tall and majestic. My appreciation of Africa and the beauty it has always possessed has been nurtured over the last decade of my life. As a visual artist capturing unconventional beauty inspire by Africa in a modern world dominated by western themes and subject matter has been of great interest to me. I enjoy the rich colours and texture that flow throughout the series. My idea was to get the viewer to feel like they wandered into the forest and spotted this beautiful Masai girl going about her day, captivating with her intricately woven hair, and accessories.
THE POVO JOURNAL November 2014
» PHOTOGRAPHY 10TH Anniversary Edition
Rastafari DR JAHLANI NIAAH SCHOLAR
astafari interestingly is one of the most well documented cultural phenomena to have emerged in the last century. Interestingly though, this documentation is not by us; it’s not by West Indians. The experts so to speak on Rastafari reside in Washington, Haig, UK; there is even a Rastafari expert on Rastafarian music in Japan, a woman called Yashiko Shibata who did her work the 80’s; quite a while back and in a sense I and I, Afrikans, black people, Jamaicans, Caribbean persons have been slow in really looking deeply at his movement and trying to interpret and explain it.
So my work in particular tried to make sense of Rastafari in my space and my life and
Rastafari has been the key decolonising tool; decolonising voice; decolonising facility. Rastafari & Repatriation with Reparation WATCH HERE http://bitly.com/1w4GBi3
one of my earliest insights was that Rastafari in Jamaica constructed and operated out of a poverty laboratory. So poverty is our common unifier; this is the space that Rastafari is most dominant in and within those spaces, Rastafari is the salvation of those spaces; key leader, key teacher, key father of the fatherless. So my work then sought to make sense of Rastafari to Jamaican society.
Rastafari becomes the surrogate father for the society. It’s the father that most of the Jamaican society did not have. What is the role and place of this movement? Many people tend to focus on Rastafari aesthetics; dread locks, idea of herb and gunja, the image and veneration of his Majesty, as our divine inspiration. But what has the movement done within the context that it exists. In my assessment, Rastafari has been the key decolonising tool; decolonising voice; decolonising facility and in this respect, I think, this is where Rastafari becomes a platform for an international collaboration, international expansion and the appeal that we see that makes Rastafari p ot e n t A f r i k a n d i a s p o r a contributions that we have now. In looking at the movement in the context of Jamaica, we can’t do that without looking historically. Historically based on the colonial experience, the Afrikan male was completely marginalised or erased from the domestic states. Our histories; our families; our day to day existence are driven through the work of the mother and the focus on the mother. So, mothers given our society have a measure of respect, perhaps not as much as they ought to have but they have the respect from having been historically present and historically, the source that keeps the children going. If you are to talk to one in three Jamaicans they don’t have a connection to their father. Many of them don’t know their father. Many of them claim that it is
THE POVO JOURNAL November 2014
only through Rastafari that they have known what fatherhood is or what a father is. So in my mind, Rastafari becomes the surrogate father for the society. It’s the father that most of the Jamaican society did not have. Within the Jamaican conscious, Rastafari is considered to be primarily a male dominated movement and based on the latest statistics that we have seen from government census, the movement is 85% male, in Jamaica that is. This is slightly different outside of Jamaica and in some places like Trinidad and Tobago, it’s almost 50/50 which is unusual and we have not really had any studies to tell us why Trinidad might be so different from Jamaica. But within this male fraternity, bredren are developed into what I would describe as responsible Afrikan males. So, the understanding of self; the understanding of father; the understanding of man with woman is therefore shaped and driven by the intervention of Rastafari in the society. Now in our day to day lives in Jamaica, what we experience is Rastafari holding Afrika in front of the society and asking; what of this our dominant ancestry. Jamaican society like many of the world’s colonised spaces was very keen on demonstrating that it was civilised at independence and what civilised meant was to have a seamless transmission from British colonial rule to independence and some of our leaders like Norman
Manley bragged that we really altered very little in becoming independent and not recognising by that admission that really what you have done is preserve the colonial society with all the injuries that it would impose and inflict on the Afrikan. It is Rastafari through decades of agitation starting with Leonard Howell that brings in to our thinking and our consciousness, the view of Afrika and also, this is developed from the platform which was established by Marcus Garvey. In a sense Rastafari becomes a practical application of Garvey but anchored through the incarnation and crownation of his majesty Emperor Haile Selassie. So the Emperor comes and becomes that father that most Jamaicans never had and the instructions from within the movement therefore, were directing the attention of those who don’t know what a father look like to the example provided by the Emperor of Ethiopia. Over the decades, the movement has developed a number of different kinds of reputation and I’m not going to talk about gunja because everyone is clear about that but I would like to talk about how it has vocalised the world and expanded its range. I mentioned one of my earliest ancestors, as poverty laboratory well, out of this very poor completely marginalised space; Rastafari found a way of communicating with the world and this was through the construction of reggae music. In some peoples’ definition,
reggae music is the king’s music and there are those who say that reggae emerges in Jamaica after the visit of his Imperial Majesty in 1966 and in a sense becomes a kind of medium left by his Majesty to help us in our hardships. Reggae therefore becomes one of the chief sources of earnings for most Rastafarian; and you know the example of Bob Marley and others who
but you won’t get to Nyabingi unless you are in that space locally and able to experience it in a ritual context. So reggae in its range of forms becomes the food that is generally offered but we are really saying that coming to the Nyabingi as well to get the deeper spirituality that Rastafari holds. Over the years there have been many individuals who
very same spaces that reggae was performed in but with persons like U-Roy emerging, he became the first of a series of individuals to take to not take things expansive production of lyrics but more the repetitious toasting style. So U-Roy, he’s a father of a certain genre of Jamaican music; really brings into being what is now the popular expression of dancehall music.
From 1981 when Bob Marley passed on those who are critical musicologist would say that, that was the demise of reggae coming at that point. With Marley’s passing, dancehall became the popular song coming out of Jamaica with people like King Yellow Man representing the genre. With that shift from the focus on reggae, the analysts have also said that we moved from
Reggae and dancehall are linked but they are linked more through space than through substance. So dancehall originally really referred to the
With that shift from the focus on reggae, the analysts have also said that we moved from culture to what is commonly described as ‘slackness’ music.
culture to what is commonly described as ‘slackness’ music, by ‘slackness’, we are talking about body parts and violence; and a range of conversations that were not necessarily driven in the Pan-Afrikan uplifting tradition, solidarity among people who are struggling, etc. Dancehall has a distinct genre; starts after the death of Bob
» TO PAGE 86 10TH Anniversary Edition
have used dreadlocks and the medium of reggae as a way of gaining fame and fortune and I think it is out of that space that a lot of the confusion; a lot of the misrepresentation of Rastafari as a spirituality develops.
became multi-millionaires through that work. But outside its profitability, reggae is really that medium through which the message has been transmitted and even in Rastafari there are tensions about the value and importance of reggae that no-one can deny that it has performed in the global world. For the poor Rastafari, reggae is commercial music while in Nyabingi it’s spiritual music
Professor Dr Fred Zindi, Sister Neka, Dr jahlani Niaah and Saki Mafundikwa at the Book Cafe, Harare, Zimbabwe
FA S H I O N
« FROM PAGE 85 Rastafari
at risk in absorbing this without questioning. Many of the young people today; many of you are quite aware of some of the conditions based on the way the media has handled it. Public spaces become transformed because of the involvement of music. Bus stops, bus terminals, passenger buses; we’ve had to impose very strong legislation about noise pollution and we have strict night noise Acts because of the way dancehall has encroached across the society. Some people feel confronted or offended by it.
What we have seen therefore is that in the communities’ spaces, the youth are under siege and some people say that this is because of dancehall. There are artists who come with a badness, in fact, dancehall has a few
From ’81 up until present there has been a range of attempts to critique dancehall music and even ascribed it as being one of the sources of what they call social and cultural decay. Recently, the Ministry of National Security in Jamaica produced some statistics on crime and violence in Jamaica. Among the Caribbean nations, Jamaica leads in violence. It’s not just gun crimes but there is also road fatalities and a range of hopelessness that young people face. I’m commonly referred to as elder and I have been called elder for the past 10 years but that is partially due to the fact that many young people will not pass 25, especially those who live in urban communities. So there is a high attrition, especially for young males who are the most vulnerable on the front line.
Marley and with that some say through various kinds of conspiracy theory, it was really an attempt to remove the potency of what reggae had produced at that point. Zimbabwe is a classic example of reggae solidarity and potency of that media. Bob Marley’s participation in that struggle popularised Zimbabwe in a way that no other Afrikan country has a reputation in the West Indies. That’s part of the struggle where we come from. We don’t have a connection with Afrika in a normal and day to day way and it was Marley’s bridge that helped us to think about our common struggle as a people across the Atlantic.
THE TOWERING GODDESS
Full - Figure Model Rutendo Mutsamwiri looking regal, blazed a trail in the Zimbabwe modelling industry by becoming the first full – figured model to strut the catwalk at the Zimbabwe Fashion Week 2014 closing for Durban based TZM Fashion House. She was treated to a standing ovation of which we also salute her. After that she featured at the Zambia Fashion Week in Lusaka where she opened for Tanzanian fashion designer Mustafa Hassanali. Rutendo was recently selected to be part of the first group of interns in part of the Microsoft 4 Afrika initiative. Out of thousands of applicants from all over the continent, only 70 were selected and she was one of them, the only one from Zimbabwe.
key signifiers. One is that you have to have a girls tune; you have to have a gun tune; you have to have a herb tune and this is a recipe for your success. Now if you come on stage and you don’t get a forward, you
THE POVO JOURNAL November 2014
draw for one of those tunes and you are assured that the audience will raise up, etc. In sense then there has been an embrace of the ‘slackness’ that dancehall purports and young people in particular are most
But in a sense Jamaica understands dancehall as being specific to a space and specific to a time. This is not necessarily the case in other Caribbean Islands where you will have dancehall music with bad words and explicit content in the public domain. So, within the Caribbean there is a tension therefore that Jamaican cultural influence could produce, the civil societies that Cayman and Barbados in particular have had strong legislations banning it and this is also affiliated to things outside of dancehall; drug trafficking, etc. So what I’m therefore saying is that between the emergence of reggae in 1966 and the death of Bob Marley in 1981 there are those who feel that there has been a conspiracy to remove this vocal Pan-Afrikan media out of the scene and promoters and record publishers have supported the ‘slackness’ and in some instances they have given preference to artists who produce this kind of music than those who are trying to sing uplifting songs, you know, they will say ‘well there is no money for that’ they will just say that ‘the people want this’, without necessarily taking responsibility for what the people are supplying.
100 days 100 buildings VIEW ALL 100 BUILDINGS HERE http://bit.ly/TxghxX
3M, Italia Headquarters in Milan, Italy by Mario Cucinella.
The Bolshoy Ice Dome, Sochi, Russia by Mostovik
Centre Pompidou-Metz Metz, France by the great Shigeru Ban
Bauhaus in Dessau, Germany by Walter Gropius with typography by Herbert Bayer
The Lotus Temple in NewDelhi India Baha’i House of Worship by Fariborz Sahba.
Seattle Space Needle, Washington, USA by Edward E. Carlson and John Graham, Jr.
US Capitol, Washington DC, USA by William Thornton
Asakusa Culture and Tourism Centre in Tokyo, Japan by Kengo Kuma & Associates
Estádio Nacional de Brasília Second largest stadium in Brazil by Ícaro de Castro Mello.
Ponte City Apartments in Hillbrow, Johannesburg, South Africa by Manfred Hermer
The Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, Manhattan, NewYork. USA by Frank Lloyd Wright
The Dancing Fred and Ginger Nationale-Nederlanden in Prague , Czech Republic by Vlado Milunićin & Frank Gehry.
Portside the new Green Starrated and tallest building in CapeTown, South Africa by DHK and LKA.
Hall of Supreme Harmony in the Forbidden City in Beijing, China. Original built in 1406 by the Ming dynasty.
The Ray and Maria, Stata Center/ Building 32 for Massachusetts Institute of Technology by Frank Gehry
10TH Anniversary Edition
Batanai Gardens 1984 in Harare, Zimbabwe by PMTA
10 Warning Signs That You are a ‘90s Kid ZOLA NDLOVU LAWYER / BLOGGER @ooeygooey
or one thing, mother grew up long before Zimbabwe’s independence, for all of her childhood Zimbabwe didn’t even exist. Between my sisters and I is about 10 years. What a difference 10 years makes! The difference is not just in our childhood memories but in the way we view and experience the world. In celebration of POVO’s 10 year anniversary, here’s a list that every ‘90s kid will completely understand and every other human will find baffling. I was born in 1990 (don’t laugh) so I spent the first 10 years of my life in this decade. Here we go, you know you’re a ‘90s kids if… #1 You’ve never seen a telegram.
Before there was email, WhatsApp, Skype, text messaging and instant messaging there were telegrams for urgent messages. Don’t ask me to explain exactly what they are because I don’t know. #2 You have no clue what Sub A and Sub B are. Instead of Grade 1 your parents had Sub A and started school at the age of 7 were they learnt about ‘Benny and Betty’. Benny
If you’ve always wondered if you are from a different planet than the other members of your family, then I’m here to confirm your suspicion. You’re a ‘90s kid and they’re not. You’re the normal one and they are weird. and Betty are walking. Benny and Betty are playing. #3 You had one of those POSB accounts. Remember that green POSB passbook where you kept something like $0.25 as your minimum balance? That’s where you saved for the very first time and practised your signature. #4 You’ve never posted a letter. And you wonder what all the red boxes around town
In my immediate family there are three generations of women: my mother who grew up in the ‘60s, my sisters who grew up in the ‘80s and me. I’m the ‘90s kid. I’m the one they always laugh at because I studied Zimbabwean history, I didn’t live it. 88
THE POVO JOURNAL November 2014
and the neighbourhood are about. Stamps are things that people collect and snail mail is a completely foreign concept for you.
9PM and you had to turn it on in advance to give it time to warm up. Huh?!
#5 You think milk is from the supermarket.
We go to 3D cinemas and they went to bioscopes. When a bioscope film was showing people would gather in the community hall to watch Popeye and Zorro. Ah, the romance!
Once upon a time, milkmen delivered glass bottles at the door. Can you believe that? #6 Your first language and your mother tongue aren’t the same thing. And talking to older relatives is awkward because you don’t actually speak your mother tongue fluently. #7 You grew up in the ‘burbs. Before 1980, western suburbs (or locations) were reserved for black people and there were other areas which were for white people. If you actually had a choice then you’re definitely a born free! #8 You’re horrified at the thought of not having more than one TV channel. There was a time when not every household had a television and those who did only had one channel. Television ran from 530PM-
#9 You think the bioscope is a laboratory instrument.
#10 You would die without Facebook, Twitter or Instagram Your parents have a social media phobia and you just don’t get it. You literally give a running commentary of what you’ve been doing all day and check your Twitter every 5 minutes. One day, we’ll look at our children and wonder at what strange creatures they are; one day we’ll be the old people in the room! One day our photos and status updates will be ancient history, something for them to point and giggle at. For now though, ‘90s kids are the cool kids. And even though a decade can sometimes feel like a century, there are some things that we’ll always have in common: Mazoe, Matopos and a love for our nation Zimbabwe.
10TH Anniversary Edition
A N I M AT I O N
Afrikan Animation, the Future Scrolls NQOBIZITHA MLILO ANIMATOR @theqore
HENRY OLIVER HAKULANDABA
THE MISSION Here’s the problem we have. Culture is lost amongst modern day Afrikans. We are called Afrikans merely by geographic consideration and not really by the essence that is supposed to make us Afrikan. I am no exception to this new situation. When I decided to embark on the long road to start an animated feature film, I was ignorant of what fast became the biggest issue we faced. Researching things Afrikan normally yields unorganised and scattered results. This led us to adopt a more analogue approach and look for older sources to recount events and tradition. This is a slow process though it produced amazing information that really blew my mind! As we integrate this information into our story and concepts, I can’t help but feel that my daughter’s generation will be more informed than I was about Afrikan tradition and culture. They will have animation that teaches them aspects of their identity from a very young age. They will be a new generation without insecurities about their identity. THE PRESENT The animation industry in Zimbabwe as it stands has shown remarkable growth over the years. More and more traditional artists, illustrators and graphic designers are taking a huge interest in the discipline.
THE POVO JOURNAL November 2014
The animation industry in Zimbabwe as it stands has shown remarkable growth over the years. This trend is the same over other parts of Afrika, Rwanda, Namibia, Ghana, Kenya and Zambia showing huge interests in the field. The flag bearers in South Afrika as well deserve special mention because they have taken their productions to market and experienced commercial success. Zimbabwe still needs to make certain adjustments in the industry in order to increase capacity. Capacity building is, in my opinion, the area in which we must give the highest priority. We have tons of talented artists but unfortunately no single strong team that can take on a single coordinated effort. Different freelance animators and studios have different production pipelines and work-flows. This means that it makes it really hard for the industry to produce animation consistently. Quality control is a major topic in the circles I move in. We obviously need to improve in these areas in order to make a difference as well as create productions that are competitive in the region. THE FUTURE The future of animation in Zimbabwe is that the industry of artists must rise up and take on responsibilities that some may think are not theirs. We have to begin documenting the very fabric of Afrikan values and sensibilities in ways that will
inspire and motivate... and look totally awesome at the same time! We have a responsibility to coming generations to record the Afrikan narrative. We have to capture elements of History as well as events of the present. We need to provide a new way of telling the same stories we’ve already heard as well as come up with new ones. In closing, I would like us to think back at all the animation we have experienced throughout our childhood. They leave long lasting impressions and memories. Some may even go as far as influencing the very thinking of a generation.
The future of animation in Zimbabwe is that the industry of artists must rise up and take on responsibilities that some may think are not theirs.
O B I T UA R Y
Prince Klaus Award Awarded a Prince Klaus Award by the Government of the Netherlands in recognition of his role in establishing the Book Café and his own life-long commitment to promoting the arts.
In Memory of
Artwatch Africa Received the Artwatch Africa Lifetime Achievement Award on the opening night of the Shoko Festival in Harare.
1958 - 2014
n Friday 1 August, after 8 days in intensive care diagnosed with strep pneumonia and laryngitis - I underwent emergency surgery to open an airway into my trachea after discovery of a tumour pressing my windpipe
causing huge distress; a biopsy had diagnosed anaplastic thyroid cancer, the leastknown cancer, and the most aggressive. I will soon head to home based 24-hour care, and the relief of sky, trees, flowers, birds, music and family. I have started radiotherapy. It was a close thing that night. I am lucky to be alive, thanks to quick thinking both by
THE POVO JOURNAL November 2014
my brother Jeremy and the specialists who saw me that day. A 33-year era has – for me – ended, abruptly and dramatically, the next journey of my life already begun. This era started as an outcome of the liberation struggle on our return home in 1980, I was then just 22 years, those heady early nationbuilding days and promise of our future. Grassroots Books
(est. 1981), transformed into the Book Café culture centre (1997) that paved the way for Pamberi Trust (2002), and in turn helped found African Synergy in 2005. Related memorable arts included Solidarity Band and Luck Street Blues in music, and African Publishers Network APNET and ZIBF, as well as Anvil Press in books. Needless to say, Book Café
Book Cafe Expanded the original Grassroots Books concept into a multi-dimensional artistic vision involving music, theatre, film, literature, poetry, art and craft and thus was born the world famous Book Café.
At the same time, Paul pursued his own personal journey as a musician, establishing a series of bands. Solidarity Band which featured several young musicians who were destined to find fame as the Bhundu Boys
Founded the country’s first progressive bookshop.
NAMA Award Received a NAMA Award for “services to the arts”
and Pamberi Trust have united leadership, competent and dedicated management, and all will operate as normal. Please allow a period of transition for projects and responsibilities within my remit; I know you will understand. It is also not easy for my colleagues and comrades. Virtually my entire close and extended family was either with me or flew to Harare
1995 - 2005
Zimbabwe Book Publishers Association
Luck Street Blues Played almost 1000 live shows together with legendary jazz guitarist David Ndoro as Luck Street Blues
and mounted a 24 vigil at my bedside. Overwhelming really! It is perhaps strange to say, but true, I feel myself utterly blessed, in many ways; this extraordinary, rich life, an African life, so many wonderful, loved people and happenings, my life brimfull with goodness, love, beauty, music, books, people – all manner of wonders - and majestic Africa; now each day is
Elected Chairperson of the association in and served on the Board of the Zimbabwean International Book Fair for the following ten years.
lived simply as it should be, alive and happy to see what the day will bring, the miracle of life, it is not over! I fight on. Aluta continua! African struggles, emancipation! I find myself so fortunate to have been in situations where I could do something. “Either everything is a miracle or nothing is”, to paraphrase Albert Einstein. The choice is ours. For 10TH Anniversary Edition
S ou r c e: h ttp :/ /w w w. zi m bo j a m .c o m /a r t i c l e s /a r t - c r a f t /a r t s - i s s ue s /i t e m /1928- t he - l i f e - t i me s - of - paul - bri c k hi l l
escaped from the country to join the liberation struggle after he refused to serve in the Rhodesian army.
me, everything that has taken place in my life appears to me as some kind of miracle, none more so than beloved Book Café, its artists and life! Do not think of this as a goodbye; I am sick but also just updating those who may not have known the dramas that unfolded over the last 3 weeks, from 24 July, and changed my life.
Call For Contributions Since its inception POVO has depended on the goodwill of the contributors who have selflessly given of their time and intellect to give us a glimpse of the opinions within the arts and cultural sector of Zimbabwe. Without them POVO would not be where it is today. If you want to be a contributor but don’t know what to contribute? What does it take to be a contributor? Just a passion in the arts and culture of Zimbabwe, Afrika and a belief that your opinion is valid and valuable. You can contribute written articles in the form of short opinion pieces (350-750 words), longer more in depth features (800 - 1200 words), or interviews. You can also showcase your work in the form of photographs, posters and illustrations in poster format. We also have a visual archive of Zimbabwean magazine covers, and CD artwork so you can either send ones you have designed or scanned copies of ones you have bought. If you a blogger we also have a directory of blogs by Zimbabweans. Send in your blog so we can add it to the directory. We are inviting you to contribute to this movement of opinion and showcase with a focus on arts and culture in Zimbabwe and Afrika. POVO strives to ensure there is no disparity in the balance between gender. We are calling more women to join the movement and contribute their thoughts and opinions. We cannot forget our transcribers, editors and proof readers who do such a sterling job and are very dependable. Distributors of our merchandise and all who engage with us CATHRINE on Twitter, Facebook and on the website as well. RUDO MAKAYA @MissZim2014 CHAKANYUKA 60% of all our contributors are on Twitter. Follow them!
THE POVO JOURNAL November 2014
PHOTO CREDITS: MARJORIE WALLACE by Jac de Villiers // SABINA SHELDON by Diana Rodrigues 10TH Anniversary Edition
SPECIAL RECOGNITION TATENDA
Introducing guest contributors from the rest of Africa, Caribbean and Europe. Welcome!
THE POVO JOURNAL November 2014
COVER ARTIST UPMOST
68% of our contributors in this issue are on Twitter. Follow them!
SINDISO NYONI PHOTO CREDITS: MARJORIE WALLACE by Jac de Villiers // SABINA SHELDON by Diana Rodrigues 10TH Anniversary Edition
Nurturing a creative, curious, collaborative, innovative & entrepreneurial spirit in youth
Like the Swahili name implies, WETU is “ours”; a Zimbabwean collective of like-minded artists who create and develop new work at the meeting place of design, technology and storytelling. We work with brands and individuals to do the same, while telling our own stories along the way. Let’s start something. www.wetu.co.zw @wetuzw
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Global Village Developments
All mothers deserve to be comfortable during their pregnancy. Call us so we provide the necessary attires to make this wonderful journey comfortable. Cell: +263 77 215798
Environment, Conservation, Rural development on way to a better and more sustainable Zimbabwe. Email:firstname.lastname@example.org Cell: 0777278345 / 0738352178 www.globalvillagedevelopments.org raykasezim
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THE POVO JOURNAL November 2014
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N YE ARS 2004 - 2 014
The 5th Issue of the POVO Journal. This edition celebrates 10 years since the inception of the POVO brand. A bumper issue with contributors...
Published on Nov 22, 2014
The 5th Issue of the POVO Journal. This edition celebrates 10 years since the inception of the POVO brand. A bumper issue with contributors...