The National Arts Festival 2019.

Today marks exactly one week since the end of the National Arts Festival 2019, hosted in the lovely Grahamstown (Makhanda). The National Arts Festival is an event I eagerly await all year round till the June/July period arrives. It’s a (really, really) good excuse to head out for a road-trip, and more importantly, to come together with other festival-goers young and old, local and foreign, to celebrate the arts.

I love every single thing that the National Arts Festival stands for; no censorship and an openness to all. I also love how there’s literally something for everyone. From visual art exhibitions, to plays, concerts, talks and ever since 2018, a digital arts festival “Creativate” as well, you won’t leave disappointed.

Upon arrival, we set off on a walkabout to take stock of what all the vendors were selling. We came across a vendor selling every CD a music-lover could possibly imagine. Choosing was hard! But we ended up with some pretty cool picks (any John Mayer fans out there?).

This marimba band was on fiiireeee! They played with so much style and enthusiasm.

Although this marks our third year attending the festival, this year was the very first time that we discovered and got to experience The Village Green. It was even lovelier than I’d ever imagined, it really was a market experience like no other. I’ve never seen so many sellers in one place and the festive atmosphere was infectious. The beautiful, colorful bunting strung up throughout the grounds made it even more magical.

All smiles because of all the food, clothes and art to choose from…

Remember how I mentioned food? Yeah that was top on the priority list, hahaha! My Mom, sister and I shared this vegetarian pizza and it was so, so gooood (and gone in seconds).

My Mom’s friend was kind enough to let us spend the night at her lovely, cosy home nestled in the suburbs during our visit and we all went to see a music recital at 5:30pm. (The musicians were called ‘The Three Tenors’, if I’m not mistaken.)

My sister Gloria and I decided to go for a walk around the neighbourhood the next morning and even stumbled upon a little art exhibition.

Another art exhibition, this time featuring work by students. I love seeing work created by young artists because it often acts as social commentary and is reflective of the modern-day world around us.

Pin-hole photographic prints by Kate Sarah Duke…

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Reduction Relief prints by Wynona Mutisi…

“Little Big Brother’, oil on canvas by N’lamwai Chithembo…

I will forever love this little town, and the National Arts Festival for giving artists a platform to showcase their giftings, and for giving us all something to look forward to every year.

Till next time!


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