Category Archives: LIFESTYLE

Goddess Osun festival in Nigeria

Fertility goddess Osun festival attracts thousands of Yorubas, an ancient ethnic group in West Africa that numbers around 40 million, the vast majority living in Nigeria.

According to Unesco which named the area a World Heritage site in 2005, the dense forest of the grove and “its meandering river is dotted with sanctuaries and shrines, sculptures and art works in honour of Osun and other deities“.

Priestesses prepare offerings and sacrifices to the great goddess: a heady mixture of sacrificed chickens, ochre powder, potato chips and gin. Beating drums and the sound of shots from colonial-era rifles build to a crescendo.
Soon tens of thousands of people are marching past. Crowds accompany the  Arugba, a virgin whose face is covered with a scarlet cloth embroidered with shells, to the river where the spirit of the water goddess lives.

The wife of Sango, god of fire and thunder, once demanded a sacrifice to bring prosperity to the community, but today the virgin is just tasked with giving the offerings to the sacred river.

On the riverbank, in the shade of century-old trees, a woman reads the future in kola nuts.

One after another, women fall into a trance and have to be held back so that they do not drown in the river.

Nigerian women will turn to the beautiful Osun to give them children.

Moët & Chandon championship for best sommelier in South Africa

The intense search of  for South Africa’s most talented sommelier started to select the top professional who will represent the nation at the 2019 Association de la Sommellerie Internationale (ASI) Best Sommelier championships in Belgium. The winner  will receive the title of  Moët & Chandon Best Sommelier South Africa 2018.

A sommelier is a wine specialist in a range of operations from wine and food pairing, wine serving to being the ultimate wine guide.

The South African Sommelier Association (SASA) is looking for a person to meet the criteria of an exception skill, knowledge and experience. The most required qualities are sophistication and audacity.

The competition intends to search for new talents and support creativity in local communities.

The winner will receive a sponsored place in the ASI Best Sommelier of the World championships in Belgium in 2019 along with a voyage to visit the Moët & Chandon Maison in France.

Champagne cascade

African Art Fair 1-54 presenting contemporary creations

The 1-54 Contemporary African Art Fair has announced the exhibitors participating in its sixth London edition. From October 4-7, 42 galleries from 21 countries will present work at Somerset House, with work by some 130 artists from 33 nations.

 “Following the launch of our inaugural Marrakech fair in February and our fourth New York edition in May, we have gone on to develop new audiences for contemporary art from Africa and its diaspora across three fairs and three different continents. The growth and popularity of the fair is a real testament to the shift away from Euro-centric art-historical narratives” – Touria El Glaoui, founding director of 1-54—which started in London before adding satellite edition in the United States and Kingdom of Morocco —said in a statement.

Of the 42 exhibitors in London this year, 16 are from Africa. Eleven of the galleries will show at the London edition of the fair for the first time, including  James Cohan, Burning in Water, and ADN Galeria.

Cape Town restaurant leads in Africa

Cape Town restaurant The Test Kitchen under direction of Luke Dale-Roberts entered the list of 50 best in the world, and got labeled number One on the African continent in 2018. Time to celebrate!

What makes it unique: The first fine dining restaurant to open in Cape Town gentrifying Woodstock, The Test Kitchen launched an artistic boom with food based on rich palette of South African ingredients, and a pronounced Oriental touch. Chef Luke Dale-Roberts restaurant has two dining areas – “dark” and “light”. One starts dinner with cocktails served in a “dark” room, and then serving dishes is taking place in ‘light’ at tables with white cloths.

About the chef: Luke Dale-Roberts was born in rural England and had an active youth, fishing and stolling in nature. He was aiming to become an electrician, but then discovered his interest in food and excelled at cooking school as a teen. After the start in the UK, he enjoyed working in different Asian countries, in Bali, South Korea and Japan, trotting the world, fascinated by the universe of technique, flavours and ingredients of Oriental cooking. Further Dale-Roberts introduces this exquisite Oriental food know-how to his own restaurant, achieving amazing results in shaping local rich foods with exquisite Oriental refinement into contemporary compositions. Luke Dale-Roberts attaches greatest importance to learning experiences and sophistication of skills.

Typical dishes: The experience starts with distinctive small bites from around the world like ceviche and roti paired with cocktails in the quiet dark room. More classic-mod fare is served in the buzzy light room – like eiland (local oryx) carpaccio, local kingklip smoked with curry leaves and scallops with a Cape Malay sabayon.

The Old Biscuit Mill, 375 Albert Road, Woodstock, Cape Town
+27 21 447 2337

Drought impacts grapes harvest in Western Cape

South African Distell Group 2018 wine grape harvest was 30% down on the previous year due to drought in the Western Cape but grape quality was promising, its head winemaker conveyed.

South Africa has declared Western Cape and other regions as disaster areas as a prolonged dry spell decimated the wheat crop and reduced apple, grape and pear exports to Europe.

“The ongoing drought in the Cape has certainly had an impact on this year’s harvest,” Niël Groenewald said in a statement. “We have seen slower ripening of the grapes than usual due to smaller canopies, limited water in the soils and that which is available for irrigation.”

BOZAR: Black speaks Black

Five short stories present Europe from the perspective of the young African diaspora. A group of young, talented Europeans with roots in various African countries have dedicated months of their lives to this project by way of workshops, boot camps and studio sessions. This film expresses their loves, fears and hopes for the future in the form of poetry, rap, dance and song. Their exhibition will immerse you in the reality of the film EUphoria. You will become part of the film and follow the quest for who we are as Europeans and what we, as human beings, leave behind.

This project came about thanks to ‘Black Speaks Back’: A Belgian-Dutch non-profit organisation set up to empower young people with African roots through online videos. In this project we collaborate with Wanlov the Kubolor (Ghana/Romania) as musical director, co-writer and co-producer; brother and sister Robert-Jonathan (director) and Nohely (script) Koeyers (NL/Curacao); art director Bouba Dola (NL/Congo) and poet Susu Amina (NL/Somalia). We have also brought a fantastic group of young people together to conquer the silver screen with their own songs and choreography.

Artists: Emmanuel Owusu Bonsu, Christopher Daley & Susu Amina
Young participants/Collaboration: Robert-Jonathan Koeyers, Nohely Koeyers, Bouba Dola & a group of about 15 young Afro-Europeans initiated by Black speaks Back
Experts: Mathieu Charles, Emma-Lee Amponsah
Theme: Afro-European identity
Final output: 1 story / 5 films

Wednesday 9 May – Premiere (Hall M)

20:00 Premiere EUphoria by Black speaks Back + Q&A

Contemporary African artists at rise

Contemporary African artists have been gaining appreciation on the international art market, a boom that’s been confirmed through record sales at auction.

However these artists remain part of an emerging market niche, as the Quartz news website pointed out: “For all the excitement around African contemporary art,” it wrote in March, “the continent still accounts for a fraction of the global art market.”

Art Basel‘s latest global art market analysis, “The Art Market 2018,” showed that combined sales of African and South American art constitute less than four percent of last year’s international market share. The US, China and the UK still strongly dominate the market, largely because these richer countries count more art collectors.

 

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