Our Stories are still being told by Outsiders

I’m not a good writer, but i have to let this rant out. 

Where are African artists, photographers who make it their mission to tell the story of wholeness, of love and passion within their communities. Of the the struggle. Of the injustices? I know they are plentiful, but where are they in the art market? In publications? In galleries?  

I can name a few artist and photographers.For example, Steven Nkosi, a photographer (who I’ve recently started following on instagram) walks around Zimbabwean streets and take photographs of everyday life (& people) of Zimbabwe. There are other artists like Kahinde Wiley(U.S born), Wangechi Mutu, Yinka Shonibare, El Anatsui. I am glad these artists have sort of paved the way for young African contemporary artists/photographer and I believe  they are the foundation of greater things to come from Africans around the globe but most importantly in Africa.  I wish there were more photographers, artists reaching international scale and being shown in public spaces (Galleries, Museums). I mostly wish there were more young artists/photographers out there with strong voices and telling their own stories. They  exists already but where are they?

I’ve seen photographers who are not from any indigenous groups create a portfolio with photographs of indigenous people. Then they are put in books and written about. But no matter how long you have studied a culture if you haven’t lived the life fully then to me there is not enough connection.And Ill be creating the work in a way that has been influenced by western education or culture.  

Hand the equipment to a child, or an unskilled person and show them the shoot button and already there is a moment rawness that will show in the work. 

I suppose it upsets me a bit. I’m not against these photographers going to places like the amazon and Africa and documenting their lives, I’m just upset that we rarely see photographs taken by the people who reside there, in museums or gallery institution. 

I urge that African leaders bring more arts and creative spaces in small villages so that the next generation can tell their stories in their own way and benefit from it too. That the skills may allow them to have some sort of income selling their works and putting their names out there. 

I believe stories told by people who understand completely the conditions they are in and whom are not being interviewed will be the most honest, most intriguing and the most beautiful. 

Am i overreacting? 

Tell me what you think. 

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We cannot solve our problems with the same thinking we used when we created them.

Albert Einstein

Having one of those days where I do not want to think of Art. I want to read a book… Or something. Watch a film. But then I realise everything I own is a form of art. And so I have one option. Get away! Go to a place where I don’t see much colour.

No place exist. So I’ll sleep.