Meet the New Female Voices of Digital Art at Fak’ugesi 2016

Story Posted: 10 August 2016
Categories: Festival,Press


The much anticipated Fak’ugesi African Digital Innovation Festival, taking place from 19 August to 3 September 2016, will not only celebrate digital art and its impact on culture, creativity, arts and technology, but will also shine a light on the role women play in digital arts.

With its Afro Tech Riot theme, festival organiser, Tegan Bristow, says that this year’s line-up will illustrate how creativity and technology are becoming more mainstream and the important role women are playing in this space: “We are very proud of the line-up of women this year. The successful engagement of arts, culture, creativity and technology by women is inspiring, and worthy of a spotlight at this year’s Fak’ugesi festival.”

Taking place at The Tshimologong Precinct in Braamfontein, Bristow adds: “I have several incredible women collaborating with us this year to showcase the possibilities within culture and technology: Janine Johnston, national coordinator of the Maker Library Network in South Africa who is working with the British Council to bring a host of free maker workshops to the festival; Kerry Friend, executive creative director, Isobar, is working with teams of musicians and technologists, including female performer Lindiwe Matshikiza, for the Festival’s “Future Sounds” project; and Thato Noinyane, project manager, British Council Connect ZA who bring us the Festival’s Market Hack and Soweto Pop Up projects among many other activities. They have all assisted in developing an exciting, and much, needed focus on women in digital arts.”

An exciting element of the festival is the Artist Residency and this year will also feature the talents of two up-and-coming African women: Vuyi Chaza and Regina Kgatle. 

Chaza wants to create spaces and opportunities where women in Zimbabwe can pursue a career in digital arts: “This is not only about growing the art form, but more importantly for Chaza, it is about shaping the narrative surrounding women in Zimbabwe.”

 For Regina Kgatle digital arts is a way in which she can use games to educate people no matter where they live or what school they go to. She is the founder of Educade and a non-profit start-up called 67games, which is how Kgatle reaches schools around South Africa. She is one of the Mail & Guardians top 200 Young people and has been nominated for the African Alliance award by the United Nations.

 The Festival will host with Women in Tech ZA a special Festival focused networking session on the evening of the 29th of August as part of its Fak’ugesi Talks program, book online to join.

Adding some international flavour to the lineup is London-based digital artist Valentina Floris and immersive filmmaker Karen Palmer from SDNA, who will not only share how they are breaking boundaries in their mediums, but explore the intersections between technology, creativity and innovation.

 “We are both excited and honoured to feature these collaborations. The festival aims to be a location for both development and celebration of technology and culture in Africa,” says Bristow.

Lindiwe Matshikiza

Lindiwe Matshikiza

image10

Vuyi Chaza


image11

Regina Kgatle

Feature Biographies:

Janine Johnston:

Janine Johnston is a creative consultant, with more than 10years experience in skills development, sustainable design and in facilitating international exchange programs. A passionate ambassador for the South African maker movement, Johnston is the national coordinator of the Maker Library Network in South Africa. She is the managing partner of JA JA Consulting, a boutique agency, specializing in strategic communication, event production and creative project management.

Kerry Friend:

Kerry currently works at a digital agency, Isobar, as an Exec Creative Director and heads up their innovation programme, NowLab. She’s also part of a collective, Create Africa, who run workshops and events at the intersection of tech, culture and education. As a member of the IAB Agency Council she currently drives the Innovation Programme, which aims to encourage agencies to explore new ways of working and thinking as they seek to reinvent themselves to stay relevant in the age of digital transformation.

Lindiwe Matshikiza:

Is an artist who uses theatre making tools to extend into film, music and various other disciplines. She is interested in work that is collaborative, process-driven and experimental. A performer, director and writer, she has initiated projects such as The Donkey Child – a devised theatre piece involving 40 players of all ages – in collaboration with Hillbrow Theatre Project, and JHB MASSIVE: Jozi <-> Accra, a temporary collective of 15 artists that combined forces to get to Chale Wote Street Art Festival in James Town, Accra.

 Thato Noiyane:

Currently offering her skills as a Project Manager for the British Council Connect ZA team, her career started after completing a BA degree in Audiovisual Production Management where she worked in the film and television industry. She has over 8 years’ experience managing projects from conception right through to delivery and has worn a few hats along the way including director, event manager, scriptwriter, social media/content manager and mentor. She has since ventured into managing projects focused around youth empowerment particularly in the creative and digital space. She is interested in this rapidly growing industry and excited to be part of a team which works along partners who are pioneers in the sector.

 Vuyi Chaza:

Vuyi Chaza is a 24-year-old woman from Zimbabwe. She wants to live in a world where video games and cartoon watching are mandatory subjects at school, and extra cheesy pizza becomes a staple food in her country. As a self-proclaimed, amateur designer, she’s been designing officially for one year and has her designs on billboards, publications, books and album covers.

When she’s not trying to navigate the choppy waters of freelancing/starting a business, she creates weird art pieces that leave people either scratching their heads or jaws dropped in fascination. Vuyi hopes to create spaces and opportunities where women in Zimbabwe can pursue a career in digital arts, while shaping the narrative surrounding women and Zimbabwe.

Regina Kgatle:

Regina Kgatle is the founder and MD of Educade , and its sister non-profit startup, 67games. An Electrical and Computer Engineering student (University of Cape Town, Honors) she believes we can use games to educate people no matter where they come from or where they go to school. At Educade, Regina focuses on designing and building educational games based on The Promise Curriculum, installing them on custom stand-up arcades that can be taken on the road to South African schools.  67games engages continues this mission by engaging with developers from around the world to create new games for these cabinets, which are then promoted throughout South Africa by means of game pop up installations.

For her efforts, Regina has received national and international awards – listed as Mail & Guardian’s top 200 Young people contributing to bettering the quality of life for South Africans, nominated for the African Alliance award by the UN. In 2014 Facebook flew her to the US together with other 24 young students worldwide to receive an award for changing lives through technology. She has recently been honored with “Amplifying new voices” award from Oculus.

Valentina Floris:

Valentina is a London based digital artist. After moving from Italy in 1994, she studied Mixed Media Art at the University of Westminster where she graduated in 1997. During that time, she started to experiment with audio visual techniques and site specific installations. In 1997 she co-founded Luna Nera, an artist-curator organisation that aimed to stimulate interest in the environmental and architectural heritage of localities. By asking the audience to re-look at sites in a new way, Luna Nera addressed a series of issues around ideas of society, community, history, memory and public space. In 2001 she started to work with Ben Foot and co funded SDNA, a creative studio based in London producing distinctive digital artwork.

SDNA’s objective is to explore techniques of interaction within public spaces, using emerging technologies and unusual presentation media. Their interdisciplinary approach, integrating site-responsive installation and live performance, aims to widen the scope of digital art.

 Karen Palmer:

Summer 2016 Karen was a Speaker at Tedx Australia at the Sydney Opera House, at Games for Change Festival New York and an invited guest on a International Women Think Tank working in new media Mutek Festival Cannada. Prior she was also a keynote speaker at DiGRA 2015 The World’s leading Academic Digital Games Conference in Germany. Her recent neurogaming parkour installation SYNCSELF 2 was a key exhibit at the prestigious Sheffield Film Festival 2015. In conjunction with being a Panel Speaker on Neuroscience in Gaming. She discussed the SYNCSELF 2 Neurogame that recreates the process of transcending fear. This is an interactive parkour film experience which is controlled by the user’s mental focus. There was a very favourable article in The Guardian on Karen and the impact of her work. Initially SYNCSELF 2 was exhibited at the V&A as part of the Digital Design Weekend (Sept 2014), and discussed her journey to the V&A at the WOW Talks series at the Apple Store Regent Street. Previously her work received exposure and critical acclaim at Festivals and Galleries Internationally. 2015 she spoke on her unique form of Storytelling and Tech at various renowned institutions such as The Watershed Bristol, Uppsala University Sweden and Conducttr Transmedia Conference to name a few.

More Research…

Join Us – African Digital Creative Community Survey

Fak’ugesi Arcade: Futures and Networking

Blockchain for the Creative Industries

2019 Games Research Round Table

More Stories…

7 July 2020

2020 Digital Art Curator Bootcamp & Commissions – Apply

7 July 2020

Smart City Technology Challenge

1 July 2020

2020 Festival Poster Illustration Competition: Apply Now

1 July 2020

Fak’ugesi Festival 2020 Online #PowerToThePixel

30 June 2020

Virtual Black Out: Experiments in Future of Form

16 March 2020

Africa2020 x NewImages Festival

11 March 2020

Masidlale Play Fest – 14 March

3 February 2020

Open Call – CairoTronica

22 January 2020

Partner Project – Masidlale Fak’ugesi Arcade Box

16 January 2020

Call for Projects – Digital lab Africa #4

23 October 2019

Winners of the Blockchain for Creative Industries Hackathon 2019!

28 August 2019

Digital makers invited to ‘Own Your Force’ as Fak’ugesi African Digital Innovation Festival reaches new heights in 2019

28 August 2019

City of Johannesburg’s Smart City Office Supports Digital Creativity at Fak’ugesi African Digital Innovation Festival

18 August 2019

Cultural Economies Digital Innovation Conference at Fak’ugesi African Digital Innovation Festival

6 August 2019

Blockchain Hack-a-thon for Creative Industries

2 August 2019

JOIN THE INTERNET YAMI-ICHI @ FAK’UGESI 2019

11 July 2019

2019 FAK’UGESI ARCADE: CALL FOR GAMES

11 July 2019

2019 FAK’UGESI & ANIMATION SA CALL FOR SUBMISSIONS

9 July 2019

Save the Date – 2019 Program

27 June 2019

Cultural Economies Forum – 4th July 2019

26 June 2019

2019 Poster Illustration Finalists and Winner – Leigh Le Roux!

11 June 2019

2 X ARTS RESIDENCIES @ FAK’UGESI 2019 – APPLY NOW

14 May 2019

2019 Call for Illustrators Open!

26 February 2019

Source Code Gallery Launching

12 November 2018

Fak’ugesi 2018 and Zimbabwean Residents at ‘Digital Imaginaries: Africas in Production” ZKM, Germany

2 November 2018

We Are Hiring! Business Development Manager / Fundraiser

24 September 2018

Fak’ugesi Beats & Fak’ugesi Arcade – Final Week of Fak’ugesi 2018

20 August 2018

Tap Your Afro Source Code’ – The Fak’ugesi 2018 Illustration

20 August 2018

Unpack the source code of your African Identity at the 2018 Fak’ugesi African Digital Innovation Festival

13 August 2018

Call for Participation: “Digital Spirit” AR Workshop

8 August 2018

Fak’ugesi Residency 2018

25 July 2018

Digital Imaginaries: Premonition @ WAM & Fak’ugesi

21 June 2018

Call for Artists! – Fak’ugesi Digital Africa Residency

21 June 2018

Fak’ugesi Play Rooms Pop Up Project – Creativate, NAF

21 June 2018

Vernacular Algorithms Pop Up Project – ISEA2018, Durban

24 August 2017

Digital Africa Exhibition and Beats Bloc Party among exceptional highlights of 2017 Fak’ugesi Festival

2 August 2017

Welcome to the 2017 Fak’ugesi African Digital Innovation Festival 

28 April 2017

Fak’ugesi Residence Project Presented at Museums and the Web, USA

13 April 2017

Award Winning Performance

4 April 2017

Read our 2016 Report

18 January 2017

Dates Announced for Fak’ugesi 2017

3 October 2016

Fak’ugesi African Innovation Festival Lights up Johannesburg

6 June 2016

What will happen at Fak’ugesi 2016 

24 May 2016

Poem Call To Action

24 May 2016

Festival Residency Call

10 September 2015

Opening of the Fak’ugesi Lab Exhibition

2 September 2015

Fak’ugesi Lab First Thursday at WAM

21 August 2015

Market Hack: making & hacking for everyone!

19 August 2015

Treasure Hunting for a Smart City with Ling Tan

19 August 2015

Residency Events, how do YOU see the future of Joburg?

16 August 2015

“Reverse” Digital Hustle – 27th Aug

15 August 2015

A MAZE/JHB – new 2015 CI

15 August 2015

BodyTech – first announcement

14 August 2015

Media Release: BodyTech 2015

31 July 2015

A MAZE to return to Fak’ugesi with more games and plenty to play with!

The 2015 Fak'ugesi Residency crew

30 July 2015

Meet the Fak’ugesi Residents

25 July 2015

Market Hack will be in The Grove Courtyard

24 July 2015

The countdown begins – in just 30 days . . .

24 July 2015

Facebook’s Kent Beck at Agile Africa 2015

23 July 2015

Launch of the Fak’ugesi African Digital Innovation Festival 2015

About Fak'ugesi Festival

Fak’ugesi African Digital Innovation Festival is at the forefront of Africa’s culture and technology scene. Explore what we stand for and how our journey evolves.

poster-2019
poster-2018
poster-2017
poster-2016

Activities

Fak’ugesi Festival takes place annually in Johannesburg, South Africa. Plus year long pop up programming at regional & international Festivals, and the Tshimologong Innovation Precinct. Digital Cultural Economies, Digital Art, Critical Engagement, VR / AR, Gaming, Animation and Sound.

icon

Make

Workshops, Hackathons, Game Jams

icon

Talk

Conference, Talks, Events

icon

Industry

Research, Residencies, Community

icon

Show

AR/VR Exhibitions, Games Arcade, Animation Screenings, Digital Art Exhibitions

Community

Festival Residencies & Partner Linked Creative Programs.