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SMITHSONIAN FOLK-LIFE CRAFT (article first published : 1999-06-8)

This year, South Africa is the guest country at the Smithsonian Folk-Life Crafts Festival in Washington, USA. Some 11 craftspeople have been chosen from KZN to demonstrate at this prestigious event which runs from June 24 to July 5.

Joseph Manana will paint a mural in the centre of the site and the public will be invited to take part. Award winning Beauty Nxgongo from the remote Hlabisa area in KZN will demonstrate traditional Zulu grassbasket weaving and Zodwa Maphumulo from Siyanda KwaMashu will demonstrate telewire basket weaving.

Bead jewellery and beaded dolls will be made by Dumisile Mathe, Celani Mchunu Nojiyeza, Albertina Majola, Sylvia Langa and Eunice Cele. Nesta Nala, one of South Africa’s finest and multi-award winning crafters, will take her own clay with her to demonstrate the making of traditional beer containers.

Wood carving and sculpture will be represented by Henry Mshololo who will play his own violins and flutes and Philemon Sangweni, whose sculptures tell a story themselves, will be part of a story-telling group.

The crafters leave Durban on June 18 for a briefing in Johannesburg before final departure for the United States. For details contact the African Art Centre on 304-7915.


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