Tag Archives: QueerPrideBW

Serepudi-A Queer Photography and Experimental Art Exhibition

3 Feb

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On 11 June 2019, Botswana announced that they will decriminalize the same-sex act, through a unanimous ruling by the High Court of Botswana.
During the month of February, the first queer exhibition will be held in Gaborone.
The exhibition titled, Serepudi is a new pre-Valentine’s Day queer photography exhibition and be hosted by Queer Pride BW on February 13, 2020. The exhibition will showcase Queer Photography by experimental artist Sade Shoalane and photographer Raymond Geofrey. It will also debut the trailer of actor Donald Molosi’s new critically-acclaimed British queer film called 2064.

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The Serepudi exhibition will run from February 13 to February 15, 2020. It will be held at the Culture Art Café in Molapo Crossing, Gaborone. The exhibition co-organizer Letlhogonolo Moremi says of Serepudi, “As Queer Pride BW we wanted to have an exhibition that includes photography, 3D items, and a film trailer, an exhibition is across media. That is to capture the breadth of possibilities in telling stories about ourselves as Queer bodies.”
One of the special features at the February 13 opening will be the artist-talks with both Shoalane and Geofrey about their work. The artist talks will be moderated by PR and Branding Strategist and LGBTQ Activist EminentGrey. Poet Phodiso Modirwa will also recite her spell-binding poetry.

Speaking about the new exhibition, Co-Founder of Queer Pride BW, actor, and writer Donald Molosi says, “Serepudi is Setswana for a stoop that one stands on in front of the house. It is a platform, and this exhibition wants to be that platform for inclusivity in Botswana arts. We are the generation that wants everyone to be represented in daily life and that is why we are standing on the serepudi of our shared dignity as human beings and queering Valentine’s Day this year through this exhibition. Serepudi is necessary decolonization of our ideas about sexuality. You don’t have to be queer to believe inequality. You just have to have an understanding.”

According to co-organizer Letlhogonolo Moremi, “a harrowing onslaught of homophobia has been meted to the Botswana Queer community in response to the June 11, 2019 decriminalization of same-sex relationships by the Botswana High Court. With this fresh wave of continued relegation of queer humanity to political talking points and spectacularization dressed as “social discourse,” it is obvious that the non-queer community does not intend on seeing queer people as fully human beings who are not defined by made-up “deviation.” Our collective house, as Batswana, is on fire! Who shall stand at the serepudi and announce that this is our home, too? What images shall stand on the serepudi and remind us of the full humanity of Queer People?”

Queer Pride BW believes that the most transformative way to stand on the proverbial serepudi and counter-violence is to highlight our shared humanity and to make a bold statement by queer bodies directly confronting queerphobia and its guardians. Therefore, in Serepudi, both Raymond Geofrey and Sade Shoalane explore queerness in ways that are not policed and not apologetic social convention. It is upon these images that Queer Pride BW seeks to stand and speak to a house on fire, confronting prejudice with boldness to embarrass patriarchy and hatred.

Sade Shoalane is an experimental artist who will be exhibiting her art at Serepudi. She says, “My work in Serepudi is very specific to the queer Afrikan narrative. I will even say the narrative of the black, queer womxn –much dismissed narrative even in supposed ‘safe queer black spaces’… it is this dismissal that I seek to turn on its head so that I may return the favor of poking, prodding, and questioning. I will mostly use the medium of fabric to conduct this interrogation.” She, laments the lack of art exhibitions in Gaborone. In her words, “there are very few regular and substantial art exhibitions in Gaborone. I think it is due to the usual culprits – the gatekeepers. Often the people who have been entrusted to run these art and culture institutions are quite clueless about the sector they represent. They tend to suppress art that redefines the culture of the country. I am deeply grateful for private institutions like Culture Art café that continue to support more radical art and artists alike.”
Serepudi comes the day before Valentine’s Day and co-organizer actor Donald Molosi says that this is deliberate. “Valentine’s Day is usually yet another celebration of heteronormativity, of being heterosexual. What about the queer people? Can they also participate visibly in these festivities of love? Serepudi is here to say that, yes they can and yes, they shall. We humanists are tired of such calendar days being triggers for the queer community because it reminds them that they are excluded. With Serepudi, a new generation of Batswana is unapologetically and fearlessly putting queerness at the center of Valentine’s Day 2020. We want to embarrass patriarchy.” Molosi asserts.

The exhibition will run from February 13 to February 15, 2020. It will be held at the Culture Art Café in Molapo Crossing, Gaborone. The opening reception will be on February 13 only and tickets can be pre-booked by calling +267 73410039.

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