Mamela Nyamza - Black Privilege
Black Privilege is a layered piece that reflects complexities of current issues in our art world. Nyamza’s work is not overtly about an achieved privilege by Black people. It is an interrogation of the concept “privilege”, in a society in which people are judged and rejected on the bases that include, and are not limited to race, gender, sexual orientation, and class. Hypocrisy and justice are themes that are explored in this work. The work has been inspired by all the unsung heroines/women who have been and still are isolated and excluded from contributing to the development of their immediate societies. These heroines are still “crawling” on the floor, seeking reprieve from recluse.
The South African choreographer and art activist, Ms. Mamela Nyamza, is formally trained in Ballet, and got further training at the Alvin Ailey New York School of Dance as visiting scholar. This is where Nyamza began to tackle the classical genre of dance, by deconstructing the traditional methods and logic of ballet and contemporary dance. Her ground-breaking works, “The Dying Swan” – innovation in the dance in 1998; “Hatched” – against patriarchy in 2007, and “The Meal” – against elitist ballet in 2012, are autobiographical works that trample on the norms of the classics.
This work is predominantly visual with minimal text that is captioned.
Contains nudity. Recommended for ages 13+
Conceived, created, choreographed and directed by:Mamela Nyamza
Performed by: Mamela Nyamza
Dramaturge: Sello Pesa
Featured artist: Given Ngobeni
Body painting and Costume design: Linda Mandela
Lighting and stage designer: Wilhelm Disbergen
Assistant: Mr. Buntu Tyali
Production credits: Makhanda Standard Bank National Arts Festival; National Arts Council
Photo Chris De Beer