Arts + Culture

NextGen: Guinean Model Sira Kante Is Using Her Platform to Empower Young African Girls

Guinea's Sira Kante is using her platform as a model and her career as an entrepreneur to uplift young African girls.

DIASPORAOver the course of July we'll be publishing short profiles, essays and interviews on the theme of "Afrofutures." Together these stories will be a deep dive into the way African and diaspora thinkers, technologists and artists view a future for Africans in the world and outside of it. 


Take a look at our introduction to Afrofuturism here.

Throughout this month, we'll also highlight and celebrate young, leading talents who already put into practice what a future with black people look like through their work in our daily profile series, 'NextGen.'

In our 14th edition, meet rising model and entrepreneur, Sira Kante.

Sira Kante, also known as InkMyAfrica, is a Guinean model and entrepreneur based in New York City. As one the notable rising models in the industry, Kante, 21, is hoping to use her platform as a way to communicate and collaborate with brands and artists in the African diaspora and around the world. She also hopes to serve as a resource to empower girls, especially in Africa, who are not usually uplifted or represented in the media or beauty industry.

Photo by Amarachi Nwosu.

Since embarking on her modeling journey just over a year ago, Kante has already accumulated several notable mentions and was recently announced as Hotel Palm Camayenne's brand ambassador, which is the first five star hotel in Conakry, Guinea. Beyond working with major brands she has also been featured in publications like GQ, WWD, Highsnobiety, C-Heads Magazine, Buzzfeed, Coveteur and Galore Magazine. Kante was also the lead model in Wizkid’s “Come Closer” alternative video that was directed by Solange’s husband, Alan Ferguson.

When asked about how she views Afrofuturism, she discussed that she believes the movement entails “creativity in all formats originated from Africa.”

Photo by Amarachi Nwosu.

She continues:

“Having a world filled with black innovators and creators means a lot to me, especially for the African diaspora. As a wise woman once told me in Guinea, 'As it is in he beginning, so it will be at the end'—Africa is now. I plan to use my platform as a center of inspiration that'll serve as a resource to empower people around the world, especially in Africa, through the art I create with brands and creatives.”

Although this is just the start of Kante's modeling journey, she has a bright future ahead that will serve as a blueprint for independent African models.

Interview
Kel-P. Image courtesy of the artist.

Interview: Producer Kel-P On His Rise, Making 'African Giant' & More

We speak with the buzzing Nigerian producer about his influences, his extensive work with Burna Boy on African Giant, Wizkid, upcoming project with Future, and more.

For beatmaker Kel-P, the road to royalty seems inevitable. In just three years, the producer has managed to work with both Wizkid and Burna Boy, the latter of whom he helped in crafting his recently Grammy-nominated album African Giant.

Shortly following his work with Burna, Kel-P went on to collaborate with Wizkid on both "Ease Your Mind" and "Mine" from the recent SoundMan Vol. 1 EP, for which he seamlessly tapped into wider pallets such as jazz and reggae.

Now, Kel-P is searching further afield. With a constantly evolving sonic-offering and several collaborations with US artists on the way, the beatmaker has his eye firmly on foreign markets. We caught up with him to discuss his rise to afrobeats prominence, working on African Giant and SoundMan Vol. 1, Grammy nods and the recent interest in African genres beyond the continent.

Keep reading...
popular
"Ancestral Manifestations" by Alexis Tsegba. Photo courtesy of the artist.

Meet Nigerian 'New Media' Artist, Alexis Tsegba, Whose Work Explores the Intersection of Nature & Technology

We speak with the digital artist about the Afrofuturistic themes in her work, exploring culture through technology and her creative influences.

As a 7-year-old growing up in Benue State, Nigeria, Alexis Tsegba, loved watching her teenage cousin draw natural, flowing pencil strokes to create comics. But when she asked him to teach her, he pushed her aside with a scoff and a "No!". Later, he offered her his mentorship in exchange for payment. But headstrong and determined, Tsegba picked up her own writing utensil and a sheet of paper and began meticulously sketching out what she remembers as one of her first works.

At 15, she remembers painting water-colors, and at 18, she moved on to acrylics. Despite studying law at the University of Reading, it wasn't until completing her Masters in Creative and Media Enterprise from the University of Warwick that she realized the infinite artistic possibilities available to her.

Keep reading...
popular
Still from YouTube.

Watch the Hazy Music Video for Burna Boy's 'Secret' Featuring Jeremih and Serani

Burna Boy drops a new music video for a fan favorite from his Grammy-nominated album 'African Giant.'

Grammy-nominated Burna Boy shares the music for the latest single "Secret," a fan favorite from his seminal album African Giant.

The track, which features American singer Jeremih and Jamaican dancehall artist Serani, is arguably one of the album's most fun and memorable tracks. The song gets a hazy music video starring the three artists in various dimly-lit, monochromatic settings. The video was directed by David Camarena.

Keep reading...
popular

Listen to J Hus' New Album 'Big Conspiracy'

The artist's highly-anticipated sophomore album features Burna Boy, Koffee and more.

J Hus is back. The heavyweight British-Gambian artist returns with his highly-anticipated sophomore album Big Conspiracy.

The 13-track album features the likes of Burna Boy, who joins the artist on the upbeat track "Play Play," as well as buzzing Jamaican artist Koffee who appears on the track "Repeat," one of the album's clear standouts.

It also features a new artist by the name of iceè tgm on three tracks. Some fans have speculated that the mysterious artist is J Hus' sister. The album includes the previously released single 'Must Be,' which he dropped in November of last year.

Keep reading...

get okayafrica in your inbox

news.

popular.