WOMEN’S FESTIVAL 2016 – Part Two: The Talks

002 - CopyThe Talks at the 2016 Artscape Women’s Humanity Arts Festival all began with….a great deal of talks, meetings, conversations and ideas

003 - CopyAny especially good one came from Beryl Eichenberger who suggested we have a Story Café @ Woman Zone making maximum use of our Women’s  Library…..

006 - CopyAnd so we did. The first of three started with a panel discussion on Mothers and Memoirs – with panel here (from left) Nancy Richards (facilitator), Ntsiki Sigege, Philippa Kabali-Kagwa, Ruth Carneson, Malika Ndlovu who talked passionately about their books…..reading and reciting from them respectively….

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Followed by some very personal stories from Jolyn Phillips and Lindeka Qampi…..037 - Copy 041 - CopyThe next day the discussion centred around food…..and children…starting with the kids, we heard from three children’s book authors, from the top…..Elana Agnello, Nicole Levin and Lucy Stuart-Clark….047 - Copy 058 - Copy 049 - Copy

Next came the foodies, in force…..(from the top), Cape Malay food royalty, Cass Abrahams with her daughter (there was an intergenerational theme running through the Festival too) ; two very chatty cooks from Bonteheuwel Koelsoem and Flori as well as sustainable foodies Jules Mercer and Zayaan Khan…..062 - Copy 071 - CopyWe also got some input from a couple of men….publishers Robin Stuart-Clark as well as Izaak de Vries

078 - CopyAnd talking intergenerational, mother and daughter writers Maxine and Dianne Case also shared some very personal anecdotes in the storysharing session.

095 - CopyOn the third and final day of Story Café, a panel discussion on Healing Society through writing was particularly poignant with (from left) Jade Gibson (facilitator), Michelle Hattingh, Leticia from Mosaic and Primrose from Rape Crisis…..097 - Copy 093 - CopyResponses from the audience were strong and emotional.

099 - Copy 101 - Copy….as was the final storysharing session when Nombeko Mpongo shared her story as an Aids activist author and sassy Busang Senne read from her debut novel. What more appropriate to close the Café with a poem from Bulelwa Basse who was part of the line-up in Women in Song the concert. Earlier poet Yolanda Benya had opened the session.

109 - CopyBut the last words had to be a big round of Happy Birthdays, candle and cupcakes for poet photographer Lindeka Qampi who celebrated her birthday with us.

Last but so not least, two enormous Thank You’s to the team at Clarke’s the Bookshop who set up and sold from a table groaning with wonderful women’s books  – and to Sophie Woolley, actress and film maker who very ably ‘periscoped’ the sessions and panel discussions for the world to see. Thank you guys.

021 - CopyAnd to all you came and spoke and listened, thank YOU for joining us. Look forward to see you again at the Women’s Library.

The Woman Zone Team


WOMEN’S FESTIVAL 2016 – Part 1: The Walks

004 - CopyArtscape has held a Women’s Humanity Arts Festival every year for the last decade. This year was special – it marked the 60th anniversary of the Women’s March for of 1956.  And so we celebrated – with a statue that honoured ALL women – meet Wire Woman!

010 - CopyBut it all began with Marlene le Roux – CEO of Artscape who had the vision for the Festival in the first place – and who honours other women all the time – like sis Thoko Ntshinga here, awarded for her work, and also director of the Festivals closing musical spectacular ‘Women in Song’.029 - Copy 018 - CopySo Wire Woman drew the crowds – and VIP’s like Cape Town City Partnership CEO Bulelwa Makalima-Ngewana…..

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We signed in our ‘sheroes’…..…..

043 - Copy…..and honoured the women who designed her, Sue Kramer and Lovell Friedman who had her brought to life by Street Wires.

115 - Copy 113 - CopyThen the day of the Walk finally dawned – and Annie Bisset does some early morning dressing of the truck, kindly loaned to us by Malcolm Moothal of the Tekton Auto Body Repairs with metres and metres of rainbow shweshwe fabric so generously donated by Da Gama Textiles.…..

118….and so professionally translated into giant rosettes by Craig Carbutt and Mara Fleischer of the Cape Craft and Design Initiative.

122 - CopyWe arrived in the cold light of day to the powerful image of artist Sithembile Msezane performing her ‘extallation’ piece The Charter outside the revered halls of Iziko’s Slave Lodge…..

129 - Copy 124 - CopyInside the courtyard at the Lodge, the crowd gathered to listen to Iziko’s CEO Rooksana Omar and head of social history collections, Paul Tichman….

141 - Copy 140 - Copy 137 - Copy….and to receive blessings from the leaders of many different faiths, courtesy the South African Faith and Family Institute led by Elizabeth Petersen.

126 - Copy….and in honour of those with hearing disabilities, interpreted by sign language specialist Michelle.

160 - Copy 156 - CopySpeeches over – we finally emerged into Parliament Avenue….to find that half of the Walkers had already left and were on their way!

150 - Copy 163 - Copy 169 - CopyBut nothing was going to stop us now – so the second Walk, the fun and the music with songstress Verah the Voice, began….

171 - Copy 173 - Copy 176 - CopyEveryone was there – friends and family, strangers and soul mates – old or newly established…wearing doeks and cultural headdress – and carrying the names of their own cherished ‘sheroes’. And thanks to the Desmond and Leach Tutu Legacy Foundation team for being marshalls!

179 - CopyWith not one but two Walks underway, necessarily there needed to be a bit of crowd management…..

181 - Copy….and a big thank you to Faldie the uber careful driver from Tekton who had so gently driven the precious abled and disabled load ahead of the Walk….

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And so we arrived – the second lot of Walkers, to be greeted by the first – and by the press!

194 - Copy 193 - Copy 195 - CopyThere was more gentle crowd control by MC Mark Kleinschmidt as well as some moments for quiet introspection in front of Lindeka Qampi’s poetry and photographic images…..

200 - Copy…before Thandi Swaartbooi’s drummers arrived to announce the panel discussion: Freedom and Justice: Have we got what they marched for?

197 - Copy 201 - CopyBut not before first being addressed by The Arch, archbishop emeritus Desmond Tutu and his smiling Leah – as someone put it, ‘The Father with the Mother.’  Our Women’s Humanity Walk 2016 was well and truly blessed!

187 - CopyAnd Sylvie Groschatau’s celebration video, said it all.

Thank you to all who walked with us.

The WOMAN ZONE team.


from grief to grace...

alex du toit PHOTOGRAPHY

Cape Town based headshot and portrait photographer

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South African Lifestyle Fashion Blogger Lauren Campbell


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