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Justice Mukheli on Dismantling Preconceptions of Africa

 Justice Mukheli on Dismantling Preconceptions of Africa

Justice Mukheli talks to CNN’s Africa’s Voices Changmakers about his tool of dismantling the spaces that shut African people and African voices out 

How to Write About Africa (2006) by Binyavanga Wainaina with its dissection of the Western perceptions of Africa is a book we should all read to understand who the world thinks we are. What begins as instructions (that you think will aid you in producing a narrative about Africa that is authentic) transcends into an ironic text that ultimately challenges us (scholars of African philosophy as well as African people) to turn the Western preconceptions and views about us on their heads. In other words, it tells us what not to write about Africa by allowing us to reflect on how detrimental letting others control the narrative is. We cannot understand a people without the documentation of their experiences and world views that is born from them.

Johannesburg based visual artist and filmmaker Justice Mukheli is in the world of transforming the art space. His visual art lives in commercials and fine art films that are his tools of changing how how the world perceives Africa. In addition, Mukheli seeks to provide young people with the opportunities that not only change their lives, but change the lives of their communities too. A few weeks ago, he directed the new Ballentines commercial that focused on giving African youth the voice(s) to tell their own stories in their own ways. His work casts African people and their crafts in a beautiful way that inevitably breaks down the barriers.

This week, Inside Africa, CNN had the privilege of sitting down with Mukheli to discuss how he is a changemaker creating change through his work. During the interview, Mukheli visited Soweto with the team and allowed them to be a part of his creative process. He expressed that his work is born from his own lived experiences.


Watch the full interview here:


Tshedza Mashamba