Find out why we’re putting cultural and creative economies under our spotlight and how we’re changing the climate narrative.
What’s Happening at Africa No Filter
1. We turned the ANF spotlight on culture and creativity in Africa: Arts and culture are among Africa’s biggest exports to the world, but how valuable are they to the continent’s youth? We interviewed 4500 people aged 18 - 35 in 9 African countries to find out. Good news: 85% believe arts and culture are important. Bad news: 71% hadn’t read African authors for pleasure and 78% spent nothing or “very little” on arts and cultural pastimes. Promising news for filmmakers: 67% watched African films weekly. Read Africa’s Soft Power: Can Africa’s creativity transform the continent? here.
2. We were out and about: We spoke about the Creative and Cultural industry and interviewed Angelioq Kidjo at an influential pan African gathering during UNGA (GABI), convened by Amina Mohamed, Deputy Secretary General of the UN.We delivered a keynote address on narrative, and how it’s formed and perpetuated at Imagine Nigeria, a movement that’s calling for a new narrative for the country. We equally joined Debating Africa
to discuss how young Africans can tap into the continent’s booming creative digital economy. We also spoke at the Crtve Development workshop on climate change for creatives.
3. We started changing climate narratives: What does a law student with a “snack” for ridding the ocean of plastic have in common with an accountant turned small scale farmer? Sheryl Mboya’s a 22-year-old environmentalist
and law student whose answer to ending plastic pollution is Snackuit – edible cups, plates, and spoons that substitute single-use plastics tableware, while Teresia Momanyi is turning her love for tech and farming and drought proof solution. These are some of the alternative climate stories produced by bird as part of our work in shifting stereotypical climate narratives about Africa.
Keeping up with ANF Narrative Champions
1. Award-winning filmmaker Dylan Valley - who is part of the Future Africa: Telling Stories, Building Worlds programme - is no stranger to Virtual Reality (VR) and already has a documentary that premiered at the 2020 Sundance Film Festival. We partnered with him on a VR documentary about a precarious occupation in an unused Cape Town hospital.
2. Emerging Artist Yuran Henrique Gonçalves, from Cape Verde, will be exhibiting his multimedia series, called
‘Small Island Landscape’ on 17th December at the Cape Verde Cultural Center in Lisbon, Portugal.
3. Africa’s creative wealth continues to make a mark on the world and OSENGWA, founded in 2016 by Seju Alero Mike, are all about celebrating it. Their work showcases curated pieces of African-influenced visual art, creative writing, music, and fashion.
4. What do festivals have to do with showing the fresh side of Africa? The Festival
Academy sees them as a bridging platform between people, places and cultures, so they brought together 37 festival managers, curators, and founders for Our Atelier Kampala for networking, mentorship and workshops.
- documenting the narrative progress we’re seeing
The world’s leading museum of design, the V&A museum in London, is currently exhibiting African fashion. The Africa Fashion exhibition featured iconic mid-20th century to contemporary creatives through photographs, textiles, music and the visual arts. Designers include Shade Thomas-Fahm, Chris Seydou, Kofi Ansah, Alphadi, Imane Ayissi, IAMISIGO, Moshions, Thebe Magugu and Sindiso Khumalo.
Lagos is getting a futuristic take with Iwájú, an animated sci-fi series that’s already getting off to a great start for showing the city as a vibrant place. It’s created by Ziki Nelson and due on the screens in 2023. Kudos to the Nigerian government for the Imagine Nigeria initiative that’s reimagining the country’s development and future. And narrative is one of the initiative’s pillars.
What comes to mind when you think about Africa and endangered species like cheetahs? Many stories of wildlife conversation usually show a continent that’s depleting its wildlife heritage, but Namibia flipped the script by sending eight cheetahs to India. It’s part of an ambitious project to reintroduce the big cats after they were driven to extinction in India decades ago.
That’s it. Remember to follow us on social media at @Africanofilter.
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