It's Youth Month in South Africa, and we're casting the net out looking for young people making a strong impact on society. There is an art gallery in the heart of Khayelitsha called Fugly, where two young ladies, Nwabisa Nkonyana and Yolanda Rachel Sihlali, are making righteous waves. Heavy Chef anchor Ondela Mlandu chatted to them about their aims and aspirations, why art is so important to the community, and how creativity can equate to making a living for young people today.
The Fugly Art Gallery was started by Yolanda Sihlali and Nwabisa Nkonyana as a means to give back to their community. They have chosen to do this by providing a platform for local artists to exhibit their work, and in turn to inform the community of the importance of art in their society.
Established in December 2018, Fugly is already making a name for itself in and out of Khayelitsha. Fugly has teamed up with some progressive initiatives to expose local artists from the Township whilst bridging the gap between Khayelitsha and the outside world. Fugly aims to get more traffic through the door of the gallery to support their artists and these two spirited creatives hope to break the preconception that Khayelitsha is an inherently dangerous place.
Fugly founders see Khayelitsha as the “New York City” of South Africa and work hard to create a safe space where people can experience the township in a welcoming way, through their various Pop-Ups events and occasional Expos.
You can watch their journey unfold, as this fresh idea rapidly evolves, under the lens of their Facebook page. And perhaps the next time you're looking for a vibrant piece of artwork, get in touch with the team and visit The Fugly Gallery. You will not only experience the bustling township but also find a meaningful piece that more than likely tells a story worth listening to.