As an artist I have opened up my practice to experimenting with the hope to allow more engagement and dialogue around the underlying themes.
“Manong a ka ditshika”
- 'Birds of a feather flock together’
This proverb is commonly spoken around the Batswana people, and can be paraphrased as ‘Birds of a feather flock together’. Similar to its western counterpart, the proverb contains principles that guide the reader and also influences with elements of community and comradery.
“Khumo le lehuma, di lala mmogo”
This particular piece refers to the volatility of material gains or riches. It is meant to humble a person, whether rich and poor, one's fortune can change drastically at any given time.
“Tsie e fofa ka moswang”
- one is able to function well when fully nourished
This portrait of a supreme deity, a Bantu healer named Mmabatho (The people’s mother), speaks of the values of self-preservation and knowledge of self. Know thyself in order to be thyself. The Tswana proverb in the background reads “Tsie e fofa ka moswang”, which means, one is able to function well when fully nourished. In order for the ancestors to do their work efficiently, certain rituals must be fulfilled through prayer, song, and dance. This nourishment applies to both humans and spirits.
The subject is seen holding a rams head, which is a sacrificial offering to appease the ancestors according to traditional healing rituals. The subject is seen wearing unconventional attire for such a practice. This suggests that in this imagined metaphysical realm, this is how the spirit appears to be. Some aspects of tradition have been augmented as a way to acknowledge the passing of time. The eyes of the subject are completely blacked out, indicative of a trance state between temporal and spiritual realms.