We have begun the work of unearthing and amplifying ordinary South African women’s voices in the past week with for #WomensMonth.
This week we continue with our theme for August to reflect their experiences through the eyes of visual artist Saaleha Bamjee. In this installation you will get a glimpse into the 4 fascinating women captured by her in their everyday existence, allowing us to #HearHerVoice
The project is not only about achieving a sense of belonging to self for these women, but also belonging to a unified larger family of woman sharing different yet, in many ways the same, reflections of their thoughts, feelings, ideas, words, and potential actions.
Her captured interpretation of their reflections gives justice to truly valiant women. The stories shared are a magnetic depiction of women inspiring their immediate communities and beyond, with small and big acts of choosing themselves and believing in their own voices.
This is Saaleha’s captivating glimpse into the lives of 4 mesmerising women, let’s hear their voices:
Fathima Bemath personifies the urgent consciousness needed in art globally. Her voice on the contribution of women to art based on woman is imperative to effect real change. In her sculptures she reflects you, me and all women because she is female first and artist second.
“Women are portrayed from the male gaze, the male perspective and narrative, and I want to change that. That's why I sculpt the woman that I do. They are not objects to me; they are even more than subjects. I'm giving them agency and autonomy. I'm giving them depth and layers of history”
Razina Theba courageously wrote the book she desperately knew had to be read. Like many women carrying important stories in them, she balanced penning down her beautiful memoir and protecting her loved ones, she dared be who she knew she could be. A writer.
“The pandemic created an urgency in me to ground my thoughts and arrange them in a way that would give hope and expression to my world view at a time when our mortality had been reduced to a question of luck”
Lesego Mabale is the perfect show of the necessity to support young women to harness their creative minds into practical opportunities. Being heard, seen and believed is the beginning of many success stories such as Lesego who is today a sought-after Pastry Chef.
“I used to make pizzas for my mother to take to work for lunch. I would just smear the tomato paste on, uncooked and unseasoned. And my mother would eat it and tell me it was very nice. Just the other day I was talking to my mum, and she told me my pizza is so much better now.”
Fehmida Jordaan’s humble start sparks resonance in many South African women. Entrepreneurs in this country are often primarily born from necessity. With support, focus and creative ambition they grow exponentially. Fehmida inspires us to start, without waiting for the perfect conditions.
You can still access and share their full stories and photos on our Instagram Guides #HearHerVoice #ItCanBe
These stories portray diverse women experiences. Whether it is the roles women play, the struggles and joys, choices and feelings, these very differences unify them. Thank you for sharing the rare and deep reflections of these amazing women.
Join the conversation on our Instagram to share your thoughts and experiences #ItCanBe