Category: Opinions

Kiwewa’yimba: Throwing architectural politics into the development debate

The architecture of a place is a mirror to the political power structures of such place. Through its architecture a political regime defines itself vis-à-vis its citizens; it communicates its ideology to them in public space. So, if we assess the architectural philosophy of our political regime, it provides an additional perspective to our knowledge about the state of democracy in Uganda. Faisal Kiwewa writes for Startjournal.org.

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David Kaiza on Ugandan Arts: Substance or airy pursuits?

“My suspicion is that we in Ugandan arts are chasing air. Are we producing art? There are financing mechanisms, gallery systems, dependence on expatriate markets, and educational systems that hold us back. But these are also precisely the challenges that should offend us enough to try and overcome them. We have had social turmoil for decades, through the 1970s, 1980s to the present. Are we using our talents to create entertainment rather than taking society to task?” Read David Kaiza’s essay presented at the first WAZO Talking Arts meeting in Kampala.

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Does luga-flow symbolize Ugandan hip-hop / rap music?

Rap music in Uganda can be traced back to the late 80s when Philly Bongole Lutaaya (RIP) performed his Nakazaana. During the last two decades numerous hip-hop artists have emerged on the scene, introducing new styles and coining genres like Lwaali, Luga-flow, and Uga-flow. Also, mainstream media has fallen in love with the celebrity artists; they sell newspapers, but are they connected to the hip-hop movement? Lutakome Felix analyses the recent history of hip-hop in Uganda.

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Dancing the night away

“The first ever article I wrote for START Journal was about the contemporary dance scene in Uganda as I had experienced it. Quite a number of developments have taken place since that article; changes in educational institutions, genre crossovers, and reduced financial support to name a few matters that will be addressed in this update.” Samuel Lutaaya updates the readers on the state of contemporary dance in Uganda.

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Kiwewa’yimba: Creative minds, dare to fail!

“I am convinced that it is not too late to use our rich cultural heritage and artistic minds to transform Uganda socially and economically. It can still be realized if we persist, mind our business, make use of the available creativity and, most importantly, dare to fail! I am calling upon those that are blessed with creativity and creative minds to dare: To fail, to flop, to move further, in the interest of paving the way for a creative and prospering Uganda.” Faisal Kiwewa of Bayimba Cultural Foundation writes for startjournal.org.

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Why Art? An essay by Doreen Baingana

“As Ugandan artists, we must ask ourselves whether we should strive to make our work more relevant to our communities and if so, how. Some would argue that it is enough that the work is relevant to the artist, and if it is coupled with genuine creativity, will automatically become relevant to the rest of society. My hope is that we can all engage in this discussion of what art can and cannot do for us as individuals and as a society. The public debate on the value of the arts and humanities must become a deeper and more intelligent one.” Ugandan author Doreen Baingana reviews last year’s Dance Transmission.

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East African Art Summit 2011: The coming together of creative minds

“The time has finally arrived that Africa begin to look to Africa for answers. We are starting to think about making East Africa our market place. But we can not go far without drastically improving the quality of our products. For too long we have made inefficient production schedules and products. On the other hand, a myriad of questions are raised to which answers cannot be immediately found. Still, these questions must be asked and answered if our art is to grow into the cultural void in which we find ourselves.” Ugandan visual artist SANE reflects on the East African Art Summit.

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Startjournal.org’s hits and misses: Celebrating the one-year anniversary of being online

Start has succeeded in establishing an arts journal writing in-depth articles about the Ugandan art scene. We have kept our frequency and given around fifty independent writers a site to express themselves thoroughly about the arts. We have kept the variety in types of articles; the reviews, the interviews, the investigation and the more promotional story. But we still have a long way to go.

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Kiwewa’yimba: Ugandan art is booming! But where is the market?

“To stand out and become significantly successful, we need to step out of our comfort zones and question how much effort we are really making to help the creative arts industry boom. We all share the goal of developing the industry into one that truly represents Ugandan talent and makes everyone proud.” Startjournal.org has invited Kiwewa Faisal of Bayimba Cultural Foundation to write his opinions about Ugandan arts and culture.

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Sane: Artists should put their creative minds into Ugandan culture

Ugandan artists must be passionate students of Ugandan tribal cultural norms and values, artifacts, material culture, and oral history if they are to win back their much needed relevance. Artists should go ‘native’, then perhaps it would be more interesting for the local language newspapers to write about visual arts. Sane sums up some discussion points after an Art Forum at Goethe Zentrum.

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