The Best of 2012: Art, Design, Interviews, Commentary & Music

It will be 2013 in under a week and that means it’s time for one of those lists summing up the highlights of the year! The following is a selection of posts that you found most interesting (as per the analytics); posts that I most enjoyed creating; exciting discoveries and; some off-blog but on-topic articles.

Art and Design

 

Interview with Artist Toyin Odutola

Interviews

Continue reading “The Best of 2012: Art, Design, Interviews, Commentary & Music”

The best of 2011: Afri-love commentary

Commentary highlights from the year spanning identity, culture, design, technology, entrepreneurship, natural hair and more …

Rise of the Afropolitan

Afropolitans-panel-discussion-at-V-and-A

The V&A Afropolitans Friday Late event earlier this year was a major event. The "world's greatest museum of art and design" dedicated an evening to contemporary African and African Diaspora design and culture. Over 5,000 people attended proving that there are a lot of people who either identify with the term or are at least intrigued by it. Record label exec – Yemi Alade-Lawal, journalist, poet and writer – Tolu Ogunlesi, author – Hannah Pool, blogger – Minna Salami and I participated in a great panel discussion that went by way too quickly. Some great questions arose and I took the opportunity to expand on some of my thoughts on the blog: "Is there any use for the term 'Afropolitan'".


Continue reading “The best of 2011: Afri-love commentary”

Interview with Minna Salami aka MsAfropolitan

Minna Salami MsAfropolitan 2

It's time to showcase the bloggers! Today I'm happy to share with you an interview with the beautiful Minna Salami, also known as MsAfropolitan. Vocal and passionate, she shares commentary on lifestyle and culture, from the perspective of being a cosmopolitan African woman. What I love about Minna's blog is that she often tackles challenging and controversial issues, and with such honesty (e.g. Mixed Race Girls have Issues, Smart Women should Watch Porn and Too Afrocentric for you?)! Read on to find out more about what this Finnish, feminist, Nigerian, pan-Africanist has to say.

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What's your passion?
I'm passionate about many causes and particularly, gender imbalance and African development. I'm doing an MA in Gender studies at SOAS at the moment, focusing on African women's studies. I'm also crazy about the written word. Blogging. Samba. Yoga. But my number one, ongoing, everlasting passion is with spirituality and humanity. 

MsAfropolitan

What inspired you to create MsAfropolitan?
All the above passions actually. 

What has been your greatest obstacle/challenge?
The greatest challenge to creativity has been the fallacy of perfectionism. As humans, it is inevitable that what we feel is important today might change tomorrow. It's been a challenge to learn to express myself freely without worrying that it might not represent who I am in future, but I have come to understand that nothing stifles creativity more than the need to create perfectly.

How have you dealt with/overcome it?
I've dealt with it by striving to create honestly. So for example, if I look back at something I wrote years ago and it makes me cringe, I remind myself that it might not have been perfect, but it was honest. And that's what creativity should be about – staying true to your present self. 

Minna-Salami-MsAfropolitan

 What has your greatest achievement been?
I'm grateful to be where I am in life, in a position where I can reach out to people and they can reach out to me and we can learn from each other. That makes me smile every day and means more to me than anything else. 

Where will you be in 10 years?
In the same place multiplied. Learning and teaching more.  

How does Africa inspire you?
Africa doesn't inspire me in or by itself. It is part of my evolution and I am part of its evolution and it's that evolving process that I draw inspiration from. From trying to understand its strengths and its weaknesses in order to try and grasp the wholeness. 

Anything else you'd like to share?
The MsAfropolitan boutique! I've created a platform to sell and showcase some of the creative labour of African Diaspora women and would like to share that, especially as I'm always on the lookout for new female entrepreneurs. 

MsAfropolitan-boutique

Anything we should look out for in the coming weeks/months/year?
New brands in the shop and more write ups on my blog and elsewhere!

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Photographs of Minna by Muyiwa Oguntoye

Week in review

Week-in-review-gr-purp

Proud Mary cushions

Hey all, hope you've had a good week. Is it just me or is November the most expensive month of the year?! Certainly feels like it. It's a month that has started off busy and will surely continue in that vein so, it's great knowing that the joy and rest that comes with December is just around the corner.

Here's a round-up of last week's posts, in case you missed anything:

A huge thanks to you for taking the time to read and share comments, facebook appreciation and tweet love. Remember, you can also get updates via facebooktwitter and by subscribing to the Afri-love feed.

Feedback is incredibly useful to me so, please drop me a line with any comments, suggestions, ideas etc.

Next week, look out for:

  • Quote of the week
  • Inspiration from a South African artist who uncovers the beauty and vibrance in the everyday
  • An interview with a Kenyan fashion designer who lives and breathes Afri-love
  • Reflections on managing one of our most precious resources
  • Celebrating Angola's Independence Day
  • Celebrating Afri-love's 5-month anniversary (did you say arbitrary? All reasons to celebrate are embraced!)
  • Continuing the spirit of celebration with a special post to bring in the weekend with TGIF!

For Colored Girls tear

To all readers in the US – go out and watch For Colored Girls (I promise I'm not being paid by the producers, I'm merely exercising vicarious living!).

Have a fantastic week! Be proud and be inspired.

 :)

2nd image from top: Proud Mary designs. For Colored Girls film poster, available to download here.