Umzi Watsha – The Politics of (im)patience


Photography: Ayabonga Cawe

Text: Ciko Story Concepts

We live in compelling times. South Africa’s trajectory is shifting and its custodians are growing in consciousness – and in action. The times call for deep, meaningful and honest reflection and conversation. This is needed in order for us to enjoy a fruitful translation of those convictions in the immediate spaces we occupy. ‘UmziWatsha- The politics of (im) patience’ puts this under the spotlight. Drawing on themes of resistance, defiance, memory, legacy, survival, exclusion and migration, the exhibition asks difficult questions.  Which side of history will you find yourself on? Faced with so much, what is our generational mission?  Would you have taken heed or abandoned your generation’s call? These are the questions one is compelled to ask themselves through the chilling images that reflect the black lived experience in contemporary South Africa.

A Makwande Photography exhibition, Umzi Watsha presents a collection of photographs that mirror a myriad of issues informing the South African black experience, compelling debate and meaningful conversation around this context. The images are a representation of the plethora of issues facing black South African’s including access to opportunity, the politics of the stomach, symbolism, division and the jarring contradiction of protecting the same state formations we are constantly challenging. It is a reflection of the current state of affairs in the country and how we navigate and negotiate space, opportunity and dignity.

The gifted eye behind these gripping pictures is Ayabonga Cawe and he presents to us imagery captured, some intentional and some unwittingly, that is an honest and gut wrenching reflection of everyday life in South Africa. In what promises to be an eye opening and thought provoking exhibition, the launch will boast a panel and conscious poetry and music to kick start an ongoing conversation through visual art. Umzi Watsha launches on 11th May 2017 at the Orbit Jazz Club.

For enquiries please contact:

Sibongile Gangxa


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