SISONKE means “togetherness” in Zulu language. SISONKE emerged 2006 through the collaboration of Imfundiso South Africa and KulturAXE Vienna and is a mutual initiative for creative exchange against poverty by designers and artists from both continents. The aim is the cross-continental collaboration of top designers and young talents for the production of unique jewellery and fashion design collections spreading the message of “Togetherness” and participating in poverty alleviation. The idea is to promote fair trade and production conditions, to create stunning catwalk performances and to support the South African design schools Imfundiso founded by Isaac Nkwe.
Isaac Nkwe is a jewellery designer in South Africa, a country whose most important export goods consist of gold, platinum and diamonds, which are then brought to product development abroad. After completing his studies at the University of Pretoria, Isaac Nkwe had the idea to train the children of the mine workers in jewellery design so that they could have a future.
In this way he founded in 2001 the Imfundiso School in the diamond mine in Cullinan and was honoured by Nelson Mandela for his action to alleviate poverty. From this personal initiative, Imfundiso developed to a training project that could open several schools in the country for historically disadvantaged youth. In the meantime more than 200 students have graduated in jewellery design.
With the realization of his idea, Isaac Nkwe has changed the lifes of many young people, opening up access to education and employment for them. This strong vision and the credo to join efforts for great achievement are the pillars of the cross-continental collaboration of SISONKE. Building on the success story of this personal initiative, expanding it internationally, creating awareness and a SISONKE community. Generating hope to overcome boundaries, for togetherness lived on a global level, showing that each person can generate change.
The SISONKE Cross Continental Design Catwalk was first staged 2007 in the renowned Museumsquartier in Vienna as a spectacular fusion of design and arts. As a ‚design-opera‘ for togetherness between the continents, this interdisciplinary stage production will be relaunched 2010 on the occasion of the 2010 FIFA World Cup South AfricaTM and its public viewing at the Strandbar Herrmann in Vienna.
The SISONKE Art & Design Events at the Strandbar Herrmann are created by designers and artists from Austria, Slovakia and South Africa. Within the frame of the Festival Donaukanaltreiben.
‚7 COLOURS‘ -SISONKE CROSS CONTINENTAL DESIGN CATWALK / 05.06.2010, 20:30
A Design Performance for togetherness between the continents and for poverty alleviation – an interdisciplinary stage production between Austria, South Africa and Slovakia, assembling jewellery and fashion design, contemporary dance, live-music, poetry and video. The 7 COLOURS Performance presents jewellery and fashion design of Imfundiso, the Academy of Fine Arts and Design Bratislava and of designers from Austria, Slovakia and South Africa in the seven colours of the South African everyday life story “Seven Colours of Sunday”.
SISONKE BY URBANNOMADMIXES JAMMING POETICS / 06.06.2010, 20:00
an evening of “colourfields in togetherness”
Poets from Vienna and South Africa will collage their own works with dancers, musicians and videofilm artists to manifest the diverse ways varied cultures weld colourfields into a matter of human evolution.
Camilo C. Antonio, Gregor Buchhaus, Georg Graf, Hoda Mohajerani, Katlego Mphago, Kgomotso Mphago, Stefan Mey, Richard Nagy, Tsietsi Nkoe, Franz Karl Prüller, Lesego Rampolokeng, Mayumi Sahara, Alina Serban and Tuareg.
SISONKE CROSS CONTINENTAL DESIGN CATWALK
A ‚Design-Opera‘ for togetherness between the continents and for poverty alleviation – an interdisciplinary stage production between Austria, South Africa and Slovakia in the seven colours of the South African everyday life story ‚Seven Colours of Sunday‘.
“7 colours” is an image derived from everyday life culture in South Africa which is applied as a motive for SISONKE’s recurrent theme of togetherness. Stories of everyday life lead to a better understanding of how people think, feel and express themselves in different cultures. “7 colours” is based on the “Seven Colours of Sunday”, when the family traditionally comes together after the hardships of the week for a common meal assembling seven dishes on the plate. The colours relate to these dishes, which are black (dried Mopane), yellow (potatoe/squash), orange (pumpkin), red (tomato/beetroot), brown (meat), white (rice) and green (spinach).
The prominent South African writer, playwright and provocative performance poet Lesego Rampolokeng, widely known to a South African and also international audience, has been capturing the story of the “Seven Colours of Sunday” in in both a written and filmic representation. The film will be screened at the beginning of the performance introducing the story and will further accompany the action on the scene.
The catwalk consists of 7 scenic images flowing into each other in smooth transitions, each scene being a ‚danced tableau‘ held in one of the seven colours presenting 80 ensembles of jewellery and fashion. The scenario is marked by a vivid fusion of dance and live-music carried by the performers from South Africa, Austria and Slovakia. The finale is a lively scene in all colours, after which the stage will be transformed into a long table assembling actors, designers, artists and guests to a mutual meal of South African dishes in the seven colours.
Lesego Rampolokeng : THE SEVEN/7 COLOURS OF SUNDAY
(from the cities scattered about, as sores on the diseased body of the land…the mining compounds, the reserves of labour that shackle humanity to a daily beast-of-burden existence, with Sunday a deserved attempt at getting back to the feel for home, the commune…a grasping at togetherness, inching towards the shared space of the family the working week splashes all about…
the food that is life…& all its glories, beauties, riches has to be equal to it…a balm against the soul-harm societal ills visit… )
Out of hunger, squalor, deprivation…the light
The brightness of life. the glitter…
from the gloom…of factories, shop-floors (& labour holidays then, the mines),
institutions of servitude, of mind-wash & body-smash…
& the clutter of machinery…to the harmony, peace, quiet
Of the lunch-table…at one with nature & the wonders resident in it…
As the dove feeds its young & the honey rests with what the bee has stung.
& what exists between the graze & the dung.
so too the love is sprung…around the Sunday tastes.
Sumptuous, yummy, crunchy munchies cover the spectrum of our human experience.
The wealth of our world shrunken to what fits between the fingers & can be bitten down upon.
Sundays…when all comes to a rest….the ingathering of the clan…the commune…the collective.
Families of whatever bonding gather…religiously (whether in the name of whatever deity
or as togetherness-spirit, harnessing energies tossed all about weekdays.
Negativities get thrashed, squashed, cut up & diced as meat & vegetables are.
Beyond life & work-blues… the Joy of existence
Here then the spirit sings…unhinged from day-to-day struggles
We pull in together, to dig in… The colours stand for the splendour of the land,
plenty…the emotions gathered together…the energies reined in…calling up of the powers,
sighting of the might in the entwined destinies of all… )
The meal is served…colourful as a rainbow on a plate…
Communion, celebration of what the earth serves up for us…
Plant, tree, bird & beast conspire to provide a feast.
The yield of the fields feeds unity…the bonds that tie us (the family that eats together)
Spanning generations, gender, life-outlook…it’s a melting of differences
& the binding together in cohesion.
In the week the sustenance is scraps, bits of food, pieces of nourishment
Sundays calls up all that is lacking…& wellness abounds…oiled with the attendant saps
& juice that vegetation & animal husbandry provides…
Later, fortified against the harshness looming with the setting sun…
the descent into the realities of things. parting…& the work ethos beckons.
& all move, out of the hum of that peace…into the noise, the discordance, the dread cadences
of another reckoning….of belly-swell & growl…into the clutches of the monster of service
in the street, the school, the work-camp…until the next sunday.
H.E. Ambassador Xolisa Mabhongo, South African Embassy Vienna
Mag.a Renate Brauner, Vice-Mayor of the City of Vienna
Erich Hohenberger, District governor Vienna 1030
Mag.a Renate Brauner, Vice-Mayor of the City of Vienna:
The “rainbow nation” of South Africa is on the move, the 2010 World Cup is probably the best example. The challenges and social problems facing the country are, however, still huge. Even Africa’s most developed economy was last year caught by the global economic crisis. But in spite of it, people are cheerful and cordial. We should be inspired of this joy of life and the boundless optimism.
SISONKE means togetherness in Zulu. In line with this motto, KulturAXE Vienna and IMFUNDISO South Africa have since 2006 raised an unique art and design project off the ground. Within the frame of this initiative for creative exchange, African and European artists and designers may contribute to poverty reduction with all their passion. A commitment as the one of the South African jewellery designer Isaac Nkwe, founder of the IMFUNDISO schools, is not common and therefore all the more remarkable.
As president of the association “Friends of Education Africa in Vienna” I endorse since years the active support of the City of Vienna of projects such as the Masibambane College in Orange Farm, which has been existing for ten years, or the Impilo orphanage in Johannesburg. The Vienna-based Association KulturAXE has established a name for itself with numerous transnational cooperation projects and represents as such an ideal partner for us for creative collaboration.
I’m really looking forward to this year’s SISONKE events and invite you all cordially to visit them. Together, and with the spirit this initiative is based on, we can move much!
H.E. Ambassador Xolisa Mabhongo, South African Embassy Vienna
The year 2010 is an important milestone in South Africa’s history, because for the first time the FIFA World Cup will be hosted on the African continent. Ke Nako – Celebrate Africa’s Humanity™.
The SISONKE Art & Design Week with “7 Colours” conveys not only a vivid impression of South Africa’s young talents but foremost showcases the collective creative work of artists from Austria, Slovakia and South Africa in this unique transcontinental project. What makes SISONKE special is that it truly acts in the spirit of ‚togetherness‘.
Leading the SISONKE project are Isaac Nkwe, founder of the IMFUNDISO design schools in South Africa and Caroline Fekete-Kaiser, Director of KulturAXE Vienna. Their visionary partnership also constitutes a meaningful contribution to poverty eradication and the creation of employment opportunities in South Africa.
I am proud to be a patron of the SISONKE Art & Design Week 2010 and trust that all of you will be able to witness the wealth of South Africa’s creativity and design as well as this inspiring spirit of cultural ‚togetherness‘.
MC: JoeJoe Bailey, Radio FM4
Design – Jewellery
IMFUNDISO South Africa:
Academy of Fine Arts and Design, Bratislava
(Textile space studio M.A. Blanka Cepková):
DESIGN – Fashion
Birgit INDRA, Wien / Bad Vöslau
Aubrey Ramatla Atelier, South Africa
Matsatsi Matlou (Hydrandea), RSA
Academy of Fine Arts and Design Bratislava, (Fashion Design Studio, Doc. Júlia Sabová):
SISONKE Stage Band:
From South Africa:
REBEL ARMY (all vocals)
Katlego “LOX BILLS” Mphago
Tsietsi “HT” Nkoe
Tebogo “TURBULAR B.G” Mogotsi
Godfrey “GAWD FYA” Mathe
Kgomotso “KMS BILLS” Mphago
Prince Zeka, (DRC), Vocals & Guitar
Rafiq Varind, (RSA), Vocals
Didier Uwayo,(RWA), Vocals
Mara Niang, (SEN), Vocals
Karl Ritter (A), Guitar
Sandra Lawson (D/NL), Bass
Alee Thelfa (GRD/A ), Percussion
Street Dance Academy Bratislava:
Faila Gloriane Fundi (DRC)
Bernadette Kasay (DRC)
Patricia Mujumba (DRC)
Prudence Tambwe (DRC)
Eszter Korodi (HUN)
Mascha Fekete (A)
Stefanie Stojkovic (A)
Michaela Wagner (A)
SISONKE POETRY JAMMING
Camilo C. Antonio
Franz Karl Prüller
Alina Serban and Tuareg
SISONKE Partners & Support
IMFUNDISO Skills Development South Africa
DCM DECOmetal (Gold Sponsor)
South African Embassy Vienna
Kulturabteilung der Stadt Wien
Academy of Fine Arts and Design Bratislava
Fashion Design Studio & Textile Space Studio
Strandbar Herrmann (location partner)
EFS Unternehmensberatung GesmbH
National Lotteries Distribution Trust Fund South Africa
Andreas Diem, DJ-Zipflo, Salamatu Maria Kanbong, Lorenz Giorgi
Special thanks to Capespan and KARROO Catering and to
Kulsum & Khalid Bouzerda, Manou Eskandari, LC Fischer GmbH, TURF Handels GmbH (Rasendoktor), Dr. Christine Wüstinger, Elisabeth Kervarrec-Cap, Mag. Helmut Blocher, NEON-line Werbedesign GmbH, Hannes Walha, Dr. Susanne Blazek, Dr. Claudia Wille, Mag. Sigi Schenk.