Wonke Wonke: Our Collective Refusal to Being Alone
In 1995 Trompies released a seminal album titled Sigiya Ngengoma. The evergreen title track featured lyrics that sounded similar to Brothers of Peace’s Traffic Cop (Ibiz Emoyeni). In the context of B.O.P’s war against biters, this similarity in lyrics caused a bit of a tension (which was also media-fuelled) between the two groups. Luckily for us, this tension was short lived. Its resolution is marked by the moment when Trompies join Oscar Mdlongwa, Don Laka and DJ Christos to form what today is known as Kalawa Jazmee Records. History made! Although the story of kwaito cannot be reduced to Kalawa, this coming together was instrumental in the solidification of a culture of different crews coming together to form a movement. The story of kwaito is in many ways also a story of the prominence of the group over the individual. Besides B.O.P and Trompies, think Boom Shaka, Bongo Maffin, TKZee, Abashante… One of the least known songs on the Trompies album is Wonke Wonke, whose lyrics read like a roll-call of people and music that together outline the family tree of Kwaito. The roots of the music and the routes of the people who make it are tied together by the spirit that constantly refuses that which has already been refused.
Out of this tree, comes Lephephe. The third edition of our Print Gatherings is meant to mark the first year of this initiative; a year that has been defined by this same spirit of refusal to being alone, as evidenced by the number of art and cultural ensembles that have begun to occupy the space of printmaking and publishing space. Join us on 17 November as we mark the beginning of the end of single-sided narratives through collective printing/publishing and being.
Welcome to Lephephe Print Gatherings 3
Lephephe is a regular experiment in the distribution of printed material. It aims to foster and nurture the space for publishing outside the normative structures.
Lephepe is also a space for workshops, conversations, performances, launches…
The reading/archive room will be located on the first floor, in the Keleketla! Library space hosted by Nikita Manyeula and Lephephe team. In this room you are welcome to relax and explore our historical and current material ranging from Staffrider, Medu newsletters to Public[a]ction, Chimurenga, Keleketla! Library publications and many others. We have in our care zines and educational material from South Africa, Mexico, Brazil, India, Zimbabwe and Ecuador as well as publications on cultural work Senegal and Maseru. Unfortunately, for now, the material is for on-site references only, for now. Photocopy facility will be on site.
Entrance is free throughout the day until 7.30pm. This edition of Lephephe is defined by partnerships and collectivities. It occurs alongside Who writes his_tory? performances, readings, Wikipedia writing workshop (Edit-a-thon) on art, feminism, social justice and education. This takes place from 11am until 6pm.
At 7pm we introduce the special partner Boda Boda Lounge presenting a selection of new video art from the African world, presented in Johannesburg by the Visual Arts Network of South Africa (VANSA)
We are also partnering with iPhupho L’ka Biko who are, in the words of Njabulo Zwane, the keepers of a ‘The Dream to See Ourselves Clearly’. iPhupho L’ka Biko will be joined by Urban Village,
Venue: Keleketla! Library @ King Kong
6 Verwey Street, Troyeville, Johannesburg
Doors open at 11 am
17 November 2018
R100 from 7.30pm
Lephephe is children-friendly, anti-racist and anti-sexist.
This edition of Lephephe is produced with love and care by Keleketla! Library, The Beautyful Ones, Boitumelo Motau and Malebona Maphutse in partnership with Who writes his_tory?, iPhupho L’ka Biko and Boda Boda Lounge.
Special thanks to King Kong building, our biggest enabler.
Keleketla! Library is a platform for collaborative, experimental, projects. We strive to transform space into a place where multiple narratives can exist and/to challenge dominant narratives.
Malebona Maphutse (b.1994) is a Johannesburg based artist who has completed her BA (Fine Art) Degree at the University ofWitwatersrand in .2017. She works in and outside of the academic institution. She enjoys reading, listening to jazz, hip hop,tranquil, reggae, soul, neo-soul, folk and kwaito music. She is also a poet and enjoys writing. Her work has existed in/at anumber of exhibitions, spaces and happenings. She is currently interested in a number of forms of making which includeprintmaking and video art. She also enjoys drawing as an extension of her practice she has recently been involved in two projects with Offset Culture (Tijuana 2018) as part of a poster series called Pictorial Nerve, a video screening called Lost Lover in Brazil, and is the recipient of the Young Female Artist Award at Bag Factory.
The Beautyful Ones
The Beautyful Ones is a roving black studies reading group that was started by Zuko Zikalala, Ayabulela Mhlahlo, Mapule Mohulatsi, Njabulo Zwane and Thobile Ndimande in 2017 during the course of their studies at Wits University. Being students of African literature and history, the group has been interested in academic and non-academic work that looks at the world from the position of absolute dereliction embodied by the black body. The group’s individual and collective work has been informed by the understanding that black life cannot be contained by the structures of the oppression that wear down on this subject-position. It is this spirit of openness and being outside that has guided the group’s public engagements, which includes Lephephe Print Gatherings.
Boitumelo Motau,(b.1995) is a multidisciplinary artist born and based in Johannesburg. His practice employs video, photography and sound as tools to investigate time and collective memory. He also often collaborates with artists and thinkers across an array of creative projects.
Who writes his_tory?
Performances, readings, Wikipedia writing workshop (Edit-a-thon) on art, feminism, social justice and education
Bring your laptop, tablet or smartphone
Editing instructions start at 11am, followed by a supported editing workshop and performances. If more information or transportation is required, please contact: +27 74 410 90 57 firstname.lastname@example.org (until Thursday, 15.11.2018)
Who writes his_tory? Unfuk the record. Let’s be honest: when it comes to history, the record is f*****. What would happen if we undid that? Join us for a full day of workshops focused on writing letters to history, learning how to spot and critique biased content on the internet, and how to edit the fifth largest website and largest digital encyclopedia in the world. This event is for folks interested in a different kind of social justice: information activism.
Why Wikipedia, though? Wikipedia is a prominent tool, to generate and conciliate knowledge and the web based research is a basic instrument and is a daily practice of many amongst us. But the relevant contemporary question is how knowledge and information is spread and how it is funded? And who is in charge to determine what’s relevant? Let’s challenge structural discrimination on the internet and especially on Wikipedia. Let’s get active and to influence the ways we preserve information sustainably. Let’s question the way “our” history is written through a lens of intersectionality, scrutinize the historiography and add a feminist perspective to it. Let’s talk about a feminism that doesn’t exclude Black women, trans women, queer women, poor women, etc. It’s time we wrote our own his_tory!
Edit-a-thons with the subject Art and Feminism are held worldwide on all continents and are hosted here in Johannesburg by Daniela Brugger (artist in residence, Who writes his_tory?), Mack McKenzie (Director Art+Feminism), Dumisani Ndubane & Bobby Shabangu (Wikimedia ZA) and Keleketla! Library. Keleketla! Library is an interdisciplinary, independent research and media arts project founded by Malose Malahlela and Rangoato Hlasane.
The edit-a-thon is supported by ART+FEMINISM, Wikimedia ZA, Pro Helvetia Johannesburg
Boda Boda Lounge
Boda Boda Lounge is a cross-continental video art festival that will take place at over 15 spaces across the African continent from 16–18 November 2018. The Boda Boda Lounge festival is based on the conviction that video art can create exchanges between different contexts in Africa that allow both the transcending of physical boundaries and the creation of an intimate atmosphere for introspection and contemplation.
This year’s edition titled Soft Pow(ers) is conceptualised by artist Euridice Zaituna Kala. Artists are invited to respond to Édouard Glissant’s notion of Tout Monde (all the world): to deepen and complicate the links amongst the complex African worlds that go beyond the inherited Anglo, Luso and Franco worlds, to creolise rather than hybridise, and to compose a new language within these parameters – that Tout Monde identity, that soft pow(er), that is at times operating covertly. This is a call to reflect on identity not as a single strand or a single truth but one that has been shaped and reshaped by different encounters, resulting in a dynamic identity that is not bound by place especially in this moment where technology temporarily flattens space.
One is therefore confronted by a possible loss of perfect diction – an inability to articulate in one language, when accepting the Tout Monde as each individual finds new ways for the practice of the everyday that is informed by a multitude of contexts. Artists are invited to respond with works that refer to multiple perspectives of the self, their practice and their complex contexts.
Screening starts at 7pm sharp.
iPhupho L’ka Biko
iPhupho L’ka Biko is a pan-Afrikan band, founded by Johannesburg based bassist & composer, Nhlanhla Ngqaqu. The band fuses traditional Afrikan music, gospel, jazz and classical music, critically seeking a spiritual awakening of the people. Its compositions draw influence and makes compositional references from the likes of Moses Molelekwa, Zim Ngqawana, Bheki Mseleku, Busi Mhlongo and Madala Kunene. iPhupho (a dream) is a reference to a conception of God, the giver of life and the fulfiller of dreams in light of Afrikan aspirations; Biko refers to the revolutionaries in the Afrikan diaspora who have fought for the liberation of Afrikans globally. After performing at a number of venues in and around Johannesburg, iPhupho L’ka Biko embarks on an important mission to take their music to the natives of Azania and Afrika at large.
iPhupho L’ka Biko is currently working towards their EP. The audience can expect a beautiful repertoire, which will include some of their new compositions. The sound compels one to reflect on the Sophiatown era where live music was central to the development of urban culture that shaped jazz music. About iPhupho L’ka Biko’s music, V Njabulo Zwane in iLiso had this to say: “iPhupho’s music is a call, an invitation, to dream…to allow oneself to travel space and time in search for a world where we young black people will not represent the problem that we currently embody”.
iPhupho L’ka Biko
iPhupho L’ka Biko is made up of the following band members: Nhlanhla Ngqaqu (bass), Thabo Matsime (piano), Tshiamo Nkoane (drums), Nkululeko Khumalo (guitar), Miseka Gaqa (voice), Muhammad Dawjee (tenor saxophone), Godfrey Mntambo (alto saxophone) and Athamacwera Ngcaba (trombone).
For more information contact Andisiwe Mpinda at 082 646 8385 or email@example.com
Facebook: iPhupho L’ka Biko
Urban Village music encourages and motivates, entertains, and awakens cultural and traditional consciousness; it encapsulates day-to-day personal and societal experiences echoed with teachings by the elderly, bringing us back, not to be regressive but to take us back to a point where our identity reflects us and our stories.
Inspired by an innate love for the sound of music and with rhythm that flows through their bones with the same consistency as blood, the band came together in 2013 but not all at once. It all started with Lerato Lichaba, the bandleader, and one by one the four found each other, like souls that once met on the other side. Their sound can be described as a blend of folk music, Zulu rock, Xhosa funk, mbaqanga, maskandi layered with electric and funky acoustic melodies clearly rooted in South Africa.
Urban Village consists of young experiential artists from Soweto, Johannesburg: Lerato Lichaba on Guitar/Vocals, who has toured extensively with the legendary Madala Kunene as part of Forest Jam Orchestra, multi-instrumentalist Tubatsi Mpho Moloi on flute, guitar and Mbira who was an actor/dancer in the renowned musical production Umoja, Xolani “Cush” Mtshali on drums and Simangaliso “Smash” Dlamini on bass.
Often referred to as one of the hardest working bands in South Africa – they have played over 100 shows over the past two years including Oppikoppi, Basha Uhuru, Afropunk Johannesburg and Design Indaba – Urban Village released their debut release Bantu Art (EP, 2016) and are in the process of preparing to enter the studio for their debut album, to be released in 2019.
Extended Family Tree – Some of the Lephephe 3 participants
Now, in no particular order, please welcome the members of the third gathering:
Keleketla! Library is a platform for collaborative, experimental, projects. We strive to transform space into a place where multiple narratives can exist and/to challenge dominant narratives.
Poster: K!Words Conversation map made with Francis Burger (2013)
A1+ folded to A4+, Litho printed (pictured above)
Book: 58 Years to the Treason Trial (2014)
200 x 250 mm/112 pages, Litho printed (pictured above)
Keleketla! Library on Facebook, Instagram and Soundcloud
Drawing together myriad voices from across Africa and the diaspora, Chimurenga takes many forms operating as a platform for free ideas and political reflection about Africa by Africans – its motto draws from Felasophy: who no know go know. Outputs include a journal of culture, art and politics of the same name, a quarterly broadsheet called The Chronic; The Chimurenga Library – an online resource of collected independent pan-African periodicals and personal books and the Pan African Space Station (PASS) – an online music radio station and pop-up studio. The aim of these projects is not only to produce new knowledge, but to express the intensities of our world and to capture those forces, to act.
Magazines, newspapers, posters, tote bags, booklets
Youtube: Chimurenga Magazine
Cellphone/WhatsApp:067 017 4771
We are looking forward to a presentation/conversation on MINDING OUR BUSINESS, a podcast project on mental health in the visual arts, a project by Rera Letsema in collaboration with VANSA. This podcast project is part of a larger research initiative by VANSA.
@reraletsema on Facebook & Instagram
I would like to focus on what I would like to think of as a sonic coding/inscription which by way of CD, cassette, vinyl, becomes a sonic letter. How this writing of “phonic materiality” presents an opening that problematics the canonical orientation of how canonical writing is represented and reproduced aesthetically. Therefore wanting to fundamentally problematize the aesthetic and violent recognition that is coupled with it.
Art on our Mind
Art on our Mind is a NRF Thutuka funded research project initated by Dr Sharlene Khan (visual artist and Senior Lecturer in Art History and Visual Culture currently at Rhodes University) that focuses on South African women-of-colour creatives. The research team is made up of under- and postgraduate student volunteers from the art department. The project aims to generate a public archive of primary information and documentation alongside existing resources. The team gathers information by combining traditional forms of research with feedback presentations, creative dialogues and panel discussions. In a series of creative dialogues, invited guests are presented with questions designed to excavate new insights into their creative process and professional practice.
The presentation will give an overview of the project so far, which include the Black Feminist Killjoy Reading Group, Afems 2017/2018 conference, the 2018 Decolonial aesthesis Creative Lab, AvP art club, the work of the Wikipedia editing team and plans to establishing an independent printing press using Riso printer.
Pole Pole Press
Pole Pole Press practices publishing slowly. Re-thinking publishing to find untapped resources, low-tech or digital, focusing on the process. Pole Pole means “slowly slowly” in kiSwahil – working through barter, exchange, making skills, networks and knowledge available, reading and commenting manuscripts, among others. Pole Pole offers support for collaborative or individual publications by visual artists, performers, writers, where frangipani provides layout and design of print and online publications. At times, Pole Pole daydreams of other stuff, like origami letters, printed songs, non-fiction animations, telephone poems, underwater wordless narratives.
Pole Pole Press and frangipani also provides layout and writing workshops and provides visual support for Art on our Mind research project publications.
Website: http://polepolepress.wordpress.com http://frangipanidesign.wordpress.com
Presentation of a zine – a compilation of images and text exploring ideas around space, movement and the texture of reality.
Facebook: nkgopoleng moloi
BLK Thought Symposium
The BLK Though Symposium collective will be at the 3rd Lephephe to sell 3 publications, 1. The UnderWorld a BLK Thought literary magazine featuring various writers within the collective; 2. An anthology of short stories tilted “Nobody Knows my Stories” by Mookameli Moeketsi and lastly a photobook by titled “Scenes of an Outsider” by Levy Pooe and Mzoxolo Vimba. We will also be presenting on the same books as a panel of BLK Thought members about the 3 projects and further discuss what is BLK Thought Symposium and what we do.
Instagram: @blkthoughtmusic, @levypooe, @mbembhele and @mzoxolovimbastudio
Facebook: @levy pooe, @blk though tmusic @mbem bhele @mzoxolo vimba
STATE PROOF VI
State Proof will be presenting STATE PROOF VI and discussing the process of collaboration through sound, collage, sampling, and collective archives at Lephephe 3.
[Nat inserts cassette tape into deck A]
State Proof is an ongoing sonic research project between Simnikiwe Buhlungu, Nathaniel Sheppard III, and Chad Cordeiro, which is aimed at exploring the ways in which individual and collective music collections illustrate complex personal and global historical narratives that often exist “undiscovered” in many collections. This project employs processes of listening, sharing and collecting (crate digging, listening sessions and freestyle DJ sets) that stem from formal and informal systems of learning and exchange.
State Proof is a printmaking term that refers to an image in process; an image that has been printed from an ‘unfinished’ plate. In this way, artists can track the evolution of the image in process until complete. These prints exist as a way for the artist to trace their mark making, and also function as an archive to the process of production. State Proofs always lie outside of the edition.
[Chad kills low end on mixer]
Printmaking and analogue music (particularly vinyl records) draw very strong technical connections to one another in terms of cutting or pressing information into a matrix which is then editioned in a limited run, and can be relatively easily disseminated. These two mediums also draw distinct socio-political, historical and cultural connections to one another, both as sites of resistance and production or dissemination of ideologies.
[Simnikiwe looks for a specific record – can’t find it. So plays with the aux’ cable instead]
Dr Satan’s Echo Chamber, written by Louis-Chude Sokei in 1998, serves as the entry point for State Proof, thus contextualizing a text-based narrative into a sonic one. While the text is embedded in sound, specifically Dub and Reggae as a chamber of echoes and an omnipresent link which attempts to stitch the fabric of the African Diaspora together, through engagements with the sonic. State Proof- in turn- converses with this text, particularly in relation to Chude-Sokei’s discussions on echo and the centre of the universe – sound as an instigator for the beginning of life.
In this way, our personal collections – vinyl, digital, cassette – instigate conversations between us as artists, selectors, printmakers, writers, publishers, thinkers, brothers, sister, receivers and reciprocators of sonic forms. From conversations to mumbles, from mumbles to echoes; echoes which then exist seamlessly, albeit contentiously, between the peripheries and the centre/center.
[Someone bumps turntable. Needle skips.]
State Proof VI (12 inch lathe-cut record) exists as a product of six mix tapes recorded onto cassette, five collective crate digging sessions, three live DJ sets, and numerous listening sessions/conversations at Danger Gevaar Ingozi Studio, Keleketla! Library, and The Centre for The Less Good Idea between June 2017 and April 2018.
State Proof VI was produced as part of writing for the eye/writing for the ear that took place as part of season 3 at The Centre for the Less Good Idea, 11-14 April 2018.
In 2018, the Wits School of Arts 3rd year students in Fine Art, as part of the course Drawing and Contemporary Practice III have been engaging the Medu Art Ensemble history and practices. The second semester outcomes are a series of publications informed by the Medu Newsletters in the context of today. Five ‘ephemeral’ collectives in the course have developed editorial collectives and used the RISOgraph printer to produce editions, launching at Lephephe Print Gatherings III. The collectives are:
We are a collective interested in knowledge dissemination and knowledge as sustenance. Our project involves exploring undervalued forms of knowledge, and interrogating existing value systems of knowledge production. We look to the different modes of publishing and the potential each holds.
Publications, zines, posters, tote bags.
re:thINK is a collective of artists that interrogates and researches the production, distribution and application of knowledge so as to come up with new and revised versions of the former. Our main focus is the education system and how knowledge produced in the system is accessed, redistributed and applied. We intend on finding new and simplified ways to educate the next generations to realize their full potential and contribute to the betterment of their immediate communities. We strive to open up debates and conversations around the education system through screenprint workshops and public interactions.
Invade publication includes: A case publication containing zines (the content), silk-screen posters, stickers and photographs of our ‘invasions’.
This book has been compiled by a group of 6 artists. It explores the heaviness of the art institution by using Humour and Games to comment upon serious discourse encountered in the art institution. We invite people to explore the pages of this book and contribute to it as many of the pieces they will already find inside.
A publication based on the idea of inviting joy into the art space.
House of Rant
This publication is a collaboration between five Fine Arts students at Wits working under the name House of Rant. Four separate publications have been created with themes that address social issues which we have done independent research on. The themes are; Fragility, Racial Consciousness, Women in Sport and Institutional Critique. Ultimately the separate publications are joined and the required additions are done accordingly.
One thought on “Lephephe Print Gatherings 3: Wonke Wonke”
wow – what an informative post! I’m really looking forward to that day!
I just saw that in the section of the co-hosts my name and the event is differently written: Unf*ck the Record (Danielle Brugger)
May you change it to either Unfuk the record (Daniela Brugger) or even better Who writes his_tory? (Daniela Brugger)
as Who writes his_tory? is a collaborative project/collective with whom we often organise writing workshops like these. Thanks again. x