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Zanele Muholi's Queer South Africa On View At The Brooklyn Museum

Zanele Muholi's work documenting members of South Africa's LGBTI community is on view at the Brooklyn Museum beginning May 1st.

All images courtesy of the Brooklyn Museum


Zanele Muholi: Isibonelo/Evidence is a forthcoming major exhibition of work by renowned South African artist, community organizer and LGBTQI activist Zanele Muholi. The multimedia show, which opens May 1st at the Brooklyn Museum, highlights Muholi's photography, video and installation projects created over the last eight years that center and affirm the lives of black lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and intersex individuals and communities in South Africa today.

As the largest museum exhibition of Muholi's output to date, Isibonelo/Evidence contains selections from her ongoing Faces and Phases portrait series, which she says began as a way of documenting "the histories and struggles that [black queers (especially lesbians)] face in South African society." The exhibition also features Being Scene, a video project focusing on the love, intimacy, and inner lives of Muholi's close-knit community. Rounding out the showcase is Muholi's joyful Weddings series, where she takes on the role of wedding photographer to document same-sex marriage ceremonies in Cape Town and Johannesburg.

Click through the gallery above for a preview of Zanele Muholi: Isibonelo/Evidence. For more images from Muholi's Faces and Phases series, revisit our previous coverage on her work here.

'Zanele Muholi: Isibonelo/Evidence' is on view at the Brooklyn Museum (200 Eastern Parkway) May 1st through November 1st.

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Interview

A Candid Conversation With Olamide & Fireboy DML

We talk to the Nigerian stars about the hardest lessons they've learned, best advice they've ever been given and what Nigeria means to them.

Olamide and Fireboy DML have been working together for three years, but the first time they sit down to do an interview together is hours after they arrive in New York City on a promo tour.

It's Fireboy's first time in the Big Apple — and in the US — and the rain that's pouring outside his hotel doesn't hinder his gratitude. "It's such a relief to be here, it's long overdue," he tells OkayAfrica. "I was supposed to be here last year, but Covid stopped that. This is a time to reflect and refresh. It's a reset button for me."

Olamide looks on, smiling assuredly. Since signing Fireboy to his YBNL Nation label in 2018, he's watched the soulful young singer rise to become one of Nigeria's most talked-about artists — from his breakout single, "Jealous," to his debut album Laughter, Tears & Goosebumps, hit collabs with D.Smoke and Cuppy, and his sophomore release, Apollo, last year.

Even while he shares his own latest record, UY Scuti, with the world, Olamide nurtures Fireboy's career with as much care and attention as he does his own, oscillating between his two roles of artist and label exec seamlessly. His 2020 album Carpe Diem is the most streamed album ever by an African rap artist, according to Audiomack, hitting over 140 million streams. When Olamide signed a joint venture with US-based record label and distribution company, Empire, in February last year he did so through his label, bringing Fireboy and any other artist he decides to sign along for the ride, and establishing one of the most noteworthy deals on the continent.

Below, Olamide & Fireboy DML speak to OkayAfrica about their mutual admiration for each other, what makes them get up in the morning and how they switch off.

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