Local artists tackle dark, topical subject
A GROUP of local artists have launched an exhibition honouring all murdered, raped and abused girls, women and boys in South Africa.
The exhibition titled, We Cannot Be Silent, looked at personal spaces, is aimed at sensitising audiences to the impact of rape and murder, through photography, film, documentary and poetry.
It was launched at the Castle of Good Hope, Cape Town, last week and was attended by hundreds of people on Women’s Day.
Event organiser and former Weekend Argus reporter, Yazeed Kamaldien, shared photographs and a short film that told the story of Courtney Pieters, a three-year-old girl from Elsies River who was raped and murdered earlier this year.
His seven-minute documentary looks at the trauma faced by the little girl’s family after the murder of their daughter.
“It is sickening that every day a young girl or woman is violently killed in this country.
“Something is wrong with our society.
“This is a crime we should all be concerned about. We cannot be silent,” he said.
“Our goal is to create a space where women and girls, along with men, can talk about what is happening in our society – and heal while finding hope.
“We are taking a moment to pause and reflect but also mobilise, bringing people together for a way forward.”
South African-born pianist and composer Malika Omar, who has spent a number of years working in Dubai, performed a piano piece composed for the exhibition opening.
“I believe that there is a definite sense of solidarity in terms of needing change in the country in terms of violence against women and children.
“The exhibition is a perfect example of that, because there are so many people (giving it) a really warm reception.”
Bulelwa Basse, founder of Lyrical Base Project, an organisation that elevates the profiles of SA writers, performance poets and musicians, said: “I sincerely hope that we may continue to work together in bringing about positive change in our country – and the world – through our character, talents, and skills, our unique gifts which are fundamentally our collective wealth and currency to the rest of the world.
“Let the ‘We Cannot Be Silent’ campaign be the first of many we work together towards,” Basse said.
“Our lives need to begin to reflect things of purpose.
“I strongly believe our work can transcend the world to a place of positivity – of peace.”
The exhibition is a series of panel discussions and social development topics that are set to take place at the Castle until September 24.
All events are open to the public.