[Blackstudies-l] Netflix Launches New 'Made in Africa' Collection to Mark 'Africa Month'

Maria Lima lima at geneseo.edu
Sun May 10 07:50:46 EDT 2020

*Stay Smart About Africa*

*Lifestyle & Travel*
 09 MAY 2020
Nigeria's Ikorodu Bois Are Remaking Famous Videos Using Household Objects
In southwestern Nigeria, three brothers' innocent play may have put them on
the path to stardom.  Enamored with film and video, they began the process
of creatively restaging famous works, using only whatever they could find
around the house.  Fast forward three years, the boys are Instagram stars
and aiming for careers on the big screen. The Ikorodu Bois -- brothers Muiz
Sanni, 15, Malik Sanni, 10, and their 13-year-old cousin Fawas Aina -- have
become Instagram sensations by using everyday household items to recreate
multimillion-dollar music videos and Hollywood movie trailers, shot by
shot. Muiz and Malik's big brother, 23-year-old Babatunde Sanni, edits the
videos and manages the trio. He is responsible for turning something that
started as a bit of fun into what the boys hope will be careers in the
entertainment industry.

The Remarkable Resurgence of Ben Enwonwu Who Was Already Africa's Greatest
Contemporary Artist

Heralded in the 1940s as Africa's greatest contemporary artist, Nigeria's
Ben Enwonwu, essentially founded the genre through a fusion of European and
African traditions.  Although politics and narrow mindsets caused him to
descend into obscurity, recent discoveries of his lost works and a booming
market for African contemporary art are restoring him to his rightful
stature. At the height of his career in the 1940s to 1960s, he was a
household name not only in Nigeria, but globally. For more than six
decades, one of his bronze sculptures, Anyanwu/Awakening, has occupied a
place of prominence in the lobby of the UN headquarters in New York. The
bronze sculpture, inspired by the Igbo earth-goddess Ani, was a gift from
the newly independent Nigeria in support of world peace and liberation of
colonies. Widely acclaimed as Africa’s pioneer modernist artist and one of
the greatest in the world, he is credited with laying the philosophical
foundations of contemporary African art by fusing Western techniques and
conventions with indigenous traditions and aesthetics.

Netflix Launches New 'Made in Africa' Collection to Mark 'Africa Month'

In honor of May being Africa Month (celebrating the 1963 formation of the
Organization for African Unity), Netflix is showcasing its 'Made in Africa'
collection.  A series of 100 films either made or predominantly shot in
Africa, the list includes Netflix originals, as well as a raft of prior
releases from across the continent. The collection includes
critically-acclaimed films and series like Jerusalema; King of Boys;
Lionheart; Mokalik; Oscar-award winning film Tsotsi; Uncovered; The Wedding
Party; Tjovitjo; Castle and Castle; The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind; Azali;
Potato Potahto; Joy and more. Members will also see major international
films and series that were either predominantly or completely filmed on the
continent, such as Holiday in the Wild (South Africa and Zambia); The Red
Sea Diving Resort (Namibia and South Africa); Troy: Fall of a City (South
Africa), Beasts of No Nation (Ghana), Blood Diamond (Morocco, Sierra Leone
and South Africa), and documentaries, including Leonardo DiCaprio’s The
Ivory Game and the Oscar-nominated Virunga.

Rabha Ashry Takes 2020 African Poetry Prize

This year's prestigious African Poetry Prize was awarded to Rabha Ashry,
marking the second year in a row that an Egyptian has earned the top
honor.  Chosen from over 1,000 entrants, her work focuses on issues of
migration and the diaspora and is known for its powerful and searing
images. A New York University Abu Dhabi graduate, Ashry recently finished
an MFA in Writing at the School of the Arts Institute of Chicago. Her work
has been published in the Oyez Review, Collected 2018, Airport Road,
Electra Street and Strange Horizons. She spends a lot of her time writing
on the train and talking to her friend’s cat in Arabic, her teaching
profile page says. A mix of poets and academics were this year’s judges,
Karen McCarthy Woolf, Kayo Chingonyi, Billy Kahora, Momtaza Mehri and
Koleka Putuma, who praised Ashry’s poetry for its powerful, sometimes
jarring, images. They said,: “These are poems which echo long after they
finish on the page.”

Homegrown Artists Drive Morocco’s Hip-hop Scene

When you turn on Moroccan trap star Issam Harris’ latest video, “Nike,”
it’s best to throw all conventional expectations out the window. There’s no
joyful rapping trumpeting the legendary sports brand, nor high fashion.
Instead, Nike pays tribute to Moroccans’ obsession with branding everything
they own — from tires to djellabas — that has nothing to do with the
product itself or even knowledge of the brand. “Moroccans don’t have much
money, but it’s in the culture to wear brands, not fashion,” says the
Casablanca native. “Nike” is also a peek into Harris’ vivid imagination —
he wrote and composed the song as well as co-directed the video — where
daily life in Morocco meets dystopian surrealism.

Celebrating Mothers in the Wild

Leopard moms are fierce protectors. Mom will keep her babies out of sight
in a den. When she does have to leave to hunt, her babies are very
vulnerable to predators. If you have ever seen a leopard cub, consider
yourself extremely lucky. Lionesses are the glue that keep a pride
together. They are exceptional mothers, teaching their young how to hunt
and fend for themselves, while pops gets to cash in on the kill after all
the hard work is done. Mama cheetahs raise their cubs in isolation, moving
her litter every four or so days. This is to prevent male lions from
discovering her babies. Mom will teach her cubs to hunt and be
self-sufficient and they will move off on their own at about 18 months.

A Visual Tour of the Island Nation of Madagascar

Situated some 250 miles off the coast of southeast Africa, Madagascar — the
fourth largest island on Earth — is a world of its own. Sometimes referred
to as the eighth continent, Madagascar split from the Indian subcontinent
88 million years ago and the African mainland some 47 million years before
that, so it is perhaps not surprising that about 90 percent of its fauna
and flora is found nowhere else on earth. Much of the island’s megafauna
(including nearly 10-foot-tall elephant birds and lemurs the size of
gorillas) has been driven to extinction. But Madagascar still boasts a
panoply of unique plants and animals, from numerous species of baobab trees
and endemic orchids to chameleons, giraffe-necked weevils and the
bizarre-looking aye-aye.

This Insane New Boutique Hotel Was Built in a Restored Train Station Atop a
South African Bridge

With travel currently restricted for most of us, our next trip should be
something extraordinary.  Look no further than an innovative new hotel in
South Africa, the Kruger Shalati, formed from a series of restored train
cars perched atop a bridge. Located within the border of Kruger National
Park; one of Africa’s largest game reserves at 7,523 square miles; the site
of the hotel commemorates the park’s first visitors in the 1920s. It sits
on the exact spot where the original train parked at night for guests to
retire in the evening before heading to the next destination the following

The Best Blooms in Africa

Namaqualand, a region spanning South Africa's Northern Cape Province and
the Namibian border, is known for its wildflowers, which usually bloom in
the desert around August and September. The coastlines of Cape Town are
among the best in the world, growing more beautiful the closer you get to
Table Mountain. The slopes of the iconic mountain contain several thousand
species of plants, but it's the King Proteas that seem to reign the floral
kingdom most proudly. Jacaranda trees may not be indigenous to South
Africa, but the plants have become somewhat synonymous with the cities of
Pretoria and Johannesburg. Every year from late September to mid-November,
the blooms on the trees come to life, draping entire streets and sidewalks
in various shades of purple.

Learn to Sign in Kiswahili in this Tanzanian Cafe

Inside Neema Café in Tanzania, you will find that the staff, including the
waiters, waitresses, and chefs are deaf. It’s one of the few cafes in the
world that allows customers to use sign language to place their orders and
to communicate with the staff. Founded by Neema Crafts, the café aims to
create more employment opportunities for people with disabilities in a
country where more than 10 percent of the population is reportedly disabled
and being denied employment. “The main reason for starting the restaurant
was to showcase the skills of young deaf people, to demonstrate how easy
communication with deaf people can be, and to challenge negative attitudes
towards them,” said Neema Crafts in a statement, adding “the restaurant
challenges people to communicate in a different way with their waiter or
waitress to place their order.” If you don’t know how to sign, the menus
have some basic Kiswahili Sign Language and also provide order sheets for
customers to write down their order. For employees, the cafe has given the
deaf community hope.

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