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Africa

NIGERIAN BARBER SHOP TOUR

June 22 |

34 yearold Nigerian photographer Mr. Esiebo has a fascination with his country’s barbershop scene. So much so that he decided to document their colorful existence via his lens. The result has attained him (and the barbershops) attention half way across the world thanks to a NY Times feature on the subject. Read the entire piece here and find out what makes them so captivating to both the visual and cultural imagination.

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“JONAH” SHORT FILM

June 12 |

Presenting Jonah, a 17minute short film that depicts the story of a young local swallowed by one huge fish. This isn’t an adaptation of the classic Bible tale, obviously. Instead, director Kibwe Tavares sought to tell the story from the retro/future perspective of Africa’s Zanzibar coast. Utilizing special effects and superb cinematography the film gives viewers a dreamlike account of the fish legend as it occurs to the adventurer/camera thief.

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CONGO BEAT-MAKING LAB

October 13 |

What happens when a University of North Carolina beatmaking curriculum makes its way across the world to the Democratic Republic of Congo? The Congo BeatMaking Lab is what! It’s an initiative dedicated to developing opensource music software and setting up sound labs all over Africa in hopes of cultivating a rich and diverse musical landscape. Check out the following short to see just how the Beat Making Lab partners up with Yole! Africa to do what it does. Let hosts Apple Juice Kid and Pierce Freelon introduce.

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BE HEARD IN MOROCCO

May 24 |

Faithful República contributor and professional photographer, Be Heard, recently embarked on a visually stunning visit to Morocco, North Africa. Here are a few snapshots of the tripa quiet look into a culturallyrich universe that few are fortunate and brave enough to visit and capture. Fans can check out more of Be’s work here.

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TOWN OF RUNNERS

April 18 |

It’s no secret that Africa produces some of the finest runners in the world. The following documentary, Town of Runners, focuses on two friends from Bekoji, Ethiopiaa town that’s produced 8 Olympic gold medalists. The film highlights their training and coming of age. Fans can thank Director, Jerry Rothwell when the film releases on April 20th via Dogwoof.

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ABOVE BLOOD DIAMONDS

April 11 |

In what could possibly be one of the biggest Street Art swindles of the year (and it’s still early 2012) Californiaborn artist, ABOVE, recently made his political mark on the infamous African conflict diamond issue. How did he do it? By going straight to the source, a sixblock compound in Johannesburg that houses over 300 diamond traders and South Africa’s Diamond Board and State Traders Association. According to his own account, the artist lied to the compound owners by telling them that he would paint “Diamonds Are A Woman’s Best Friend” and then actually hijacked the rest of the wall space to add “And A Man’s Worst Enemy.” Talk about being had. Suckers!

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SWORD IN THE [AFRICAN] STONE

November 10 |

Way before Disney’s rendition of the Sword In The Stone story, the Ashanti Empire of West Africa buried its own sword courtesy of the tribe’s first king, Komfo Anokye. As legend has it, the leader buried the relic and declared that the day anyone ever pulled it out would mark the end of the empire. It sits in the ground to this day!

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ELEVATE BASKETBALL MOVIE

October 24 |

In the spirit of NBA basketball legends like Dikembe Mutombo and even fictional Hollywood stories like that of The Air Up There, arrives Elevate, an intriguing documentary about the journey of four African athletes that come to the U.S. in pursuit of hoop dreams. They face academic adversary, social stereotypes, and even personal shortcomings, all while trying to become part of the select few that earn the opportunity to play Division I (NCAA) basketball. Inspiring!

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FINE WIRE ART

September 28 |

Check out the wire sculpture work of Zimbabweborn artist, Gavin Worth. In comparison to his other mediums, Mr. Worth’s wiring stands in a league of it’s own, expressing the subtletees of emotion and extremely detailed human figures. We’re very impressed. Peep!

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WALMART IN AFRICA

June 8 |

The controversial world’s largest retail giant, Walmart, is getting ready to set foot onto the continent of Africa for the first time. The chain’s bid for another retail chain, Massmart, was approved by a South African tribunal. But that’s not all. As expected, the retailer is receiving a large amount of resistance from trade unions and organizations that warn against job loss and wage cuts. The tribunal that approved the bid added the stipulation that Walmart must agree to not cut jobs for two years, work with local suppliers and give preference to 500 local employees that were fired last year. Let’s see how that goes. Hopefully the continent and the retailer can uphold the terms necessary for mutual growth.

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