Afri-love Picks: Culture, Activism and Social Debate Events at WOW 2013

Alice Walker Women of the World Festival 2013 London

The last batch of my top picks for this year's Women of the World Festival at London's Southbank Centre covers events to do with culture, activism and social issues and debates. I don't know about you but, between this list; the business, entrepreneurship and career development one I shared last week and; the music, poetry and spoken word events, it's going to be tough deciding what to actually attend! It's the kind of tough decision that's a joy to make. To those planning to attend the Festival, I hope you have a wonderful time and perhaps I'll bump into you. To everybody else, I look forward to reporting back.


Alice Walker
WHAT: A world exclusive premiere of ‘Alice Walker: Beauty In Truth’, a feature documentary film by Pratibha Parmar, about the life and art of the Pulitzer Prize-winning author of ‘The Color Purple’.
The 6:30pm screening will be followed by a conversation with Alice Walker and Pratibha Parmar. The 9.30pm screening is introduced by Alice Walker and Pratibha Parmar.
WHEN: Sunday, 6:30pm and 9:30pm

What's new in African Feminisms
WHAT: Looking at what is fresh in African feminist thought and action. African women are gaining force in music, writing and film, offering powerful and subversive views on gender, power and the future.
WHEN: Sunday, 1:30pm – 3:00pm

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Inspired: Source – Promoting South African Design in the International Marketplace

1 Source South Africa Product Design Furniture and Decor on Afri-love
2 Source South Africa Product Design on Afri-love
3 Source South Africa Product Design Animals on Afri-love

A few weeks ago I happened across an interesting exhibition of South African product design and crafts, at the Southbank Centre. I discovered that it had been curated by an agency called Source.

Valuing past, present and future

Source works with over 400 design and craft companies in South Africa to promote South African design in the international marketplace. They work with companies that are not only concerned with producing beautiful handmade objects but that are also concerned with preserving traditional handicraft skills and are conscious of their impact on the environment. These companies span a wide range of media including decorative and tabletop ceramics, glass, baskets, woven textiles, felt, Papier-mâché, wire work, felt, embroidery, beadwork, lighting, furniture and accessories.

Source work with several renowned outlets in the West including Anthropologie (which I love), Bergdorf Goodman, The Conran Shop, Liberty, Urban Outfitters, West Elm and more.

Find out more about Source on their website and check out their design partners

Images via the Source website


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Bombolulu: Special Abilities = Special Accessories


I first heard of Bombolulu when I went to visit my Uncle Duncan who was at the time working as an artisan there. Since 1969, Bombolulu Workshops and Cultural Centre in Mombasa has been working with men and women artisans with special abilities to overcome their physical limitations and empower them economically and socially.


2-Bombolulu-Pendant-Earrings 3-Bombolulu-Necklace-Circles 4-Bombolulu-Charm-Bracelets-Brass-Leaf-Earrings

As well as supporting staff in becoming fully integrated members of their communities, the initiative has provided benefits such as a clinic, nursery school, social hall, sports and more. Bombolulu includes housing units for artisans, artisan workshops and a Cultural Centre which comprises of different traditional homesteads of the diverse tribes of Kenya. 

The workshops produce a range of jewelry, textile, wood and leather products. Every year, thousands of different designs are produced and many years of successful exporting have established the workshops as a reliable supplier and the project is a member of the WFTO (World Fair Trade Organization) and  it is the trading partner of PEOPLink/OpenEntry (USA).

You can visit the Bombolulu workshops and Cultural Centre and the recently launched Bombolulu Boutique in Diani Beach Shopping Centre to buy beautiful and unique products. Several items are available to buy on People Tree online.

Images, from top: bracelet, necklace, earrings, necklace, earrings, bracelet.

Africa- and Diaspora-related events in the UK this Summer

It's not all about the Olympics this Summer in the UK. There are a multitude of arts, culture and entertainment events going on throughout the country over the next few months, including some exciting Africa- and Diaspora-related ones that you may want to check out.

I'll be updating this post weekly as I discover suitable additions to the list. If you know of any I haven't yet included, please do drop me a line.




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Afri-love on Etsy – portrait edition


An overdue addition to the Etsy series – finds of all things Afri-love on the online community and marketplace. 

Top – Tuareg and Southern Nigerian Matryoshka art prints by AmyPerrotti; second row – magnets from Gypsydancers; third row – cards by Studio Flower Power; second last row –  and cut coin pendant by petsalad; bottom row – knitting bag craft apron by KOALACaddie.