This coming Monday 25 May marks Africa Day 2020, the annual commemoration of the foundation of the Organisation of African Unity (OAU), now known as the African Union (AU), established in 1963 on this day.
The Africa Day Benefit Concert At Home is possibly one of the biggest events coming this Africa Day. It’s organised by ViacomCBS Networks Africa and YouTube in partnership with Idris Elba, who will be hosting the two-hour event featuring some of the biggest names on the African music scene. See the schedule below and catch the concert on Monday here on the MTVBase YouTube channel
And while on the subjects of African music, South African singer and songwriter Bongeziwe Mabandla will feature on the Billboard virtual concert stage at 8pm on Friday 22 May as the ‘Spotlight Artist’. Ahead of Africa Day, Billboard is featuring a series of performances by African artists from 21 until 23 May. Check these two previous performances, one from South Africa’s Msaki, and Ghana’s Kwesi Arthur. And tune in here for Mabandla’s performance.
And while you’re busy soaking up African creativity this weekend, make time to check out these four photographic exhibitions on Google’s Arts and Culture platform. First up, head to virtual Kenya to visit the African Heritage House, a building constructed of varied mud architectures from across the continent. It is home to an expansive collection of African art and artefacts. And, in real life, it overlooks the Nairobi National Park.
Then head west to Cameroon for Elephants with Wings. This series of images and artworks from Cameroon’s contemporary local artists depicts the country’s “diverse human and cultural landscape” from their perspective.
You might have seen images of the pastoralist Dinka people of South Sudan doing the rounds on the internet over the last few years, most likely as a background image for one of the many so-called “African proverbs” often shared on social media. It is something else altogether to view these images shot by Carol Beckwith and Angela Fisher. Do yourself a favour and visit this exhibition and read about the story behind these spectacular images.
The exhibition forms part of African Ceremonies: Passages, an exhibition showcasing African tribal ceremonies, paying homage “to the rituals that mark every important occasion in tribal life — birth, initiation, courtship, marriage, royal coronations, seasonal rituals, healing exorcisms, and death”, through Beckwith and Fisher’s photographic lens.
Lastly, and hoping that you don’t have Quarantine Playlist Fatigue just yet, check out this five-hour Afrobeat Spotify playlist to catch you up with some of the best Afrobeat sounds out there. And have yourself an amazing Africa day weekend! DM/ ML
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"By scepticism...we arrive first at suspension of judgement, and second at freedom from disturbance." ~ Sextus Empiricus