Mofolo Arts Centre springs to life

Omamgobhozi by Kenny Nkosi, on display at the Mofolo Arts Centre. © Unknown.
Omamgobhozi by Kenny Nkosi, on display at the Mofolo Arts Centre. © Unknown.

Patience Bambalele

Patience Bambalele

In a bid to revive Soweto's Mofolo Arts Centre, an exhibition titled Wake-Up Call is now on show.

The exhibition presents the work of Kenny Nkosi, Peter Zulu and Vumelani Buthelezi.

Situated in the heart of Soweto, the centre is one of the few institutions that gave township artists a chance to showcase their works during the apartheid era.

However, a few years ago, its popularity faded. The three artists on show hope to return the centre to its former status in the community.

"The aim of the exhibition is to promote this forgotten place. It used to keep the dreams of black artists alive by featuring exhibitions regularly," says Buthelezi.

Nkosi says many people who live in the area have never been to the centre.

"We hope the show will play a role in educating people about the value of art.

"We host workshops for the youth, but many parents don't allow their children to attend. Maybe an exhibition like this will give them an idea of what we do here."

Nkosi says they also want to attract tourists to the venue.

Many people assume that the best exhibitions are held only in galleries in Johannesburg, says Zulu.

"They don't think that a quality exhibition like this one can be staged in Soweto. We want to prove that Soweto can produce quality works. We hope this exhibition will achieve that."

Zulu says the business community should also support an arts centre in the area.

We need everyone to back this idea - the centre could serve as an artistic platform to all in Soweto, he said.