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Greenland, 19, scoops BTCL best Directory cover design

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An ecstatic 19 year-old Mitchell Greenland is the winner of the 2016 BTCL Telephone Directory Cover design competition. The cover, which particularly illustrates the strides that Botswana has achieved in technology since gaining independence, was unveiled Thursday evening at Thapong Visual Arts Centre in Gaborone.

His concept, theme and how he brought them to life is what set him apart from the many other entrants gunning for the ultimate P80 000 prize money and the opportunity to have his design cover adorn many homes and businesses across the country. Interestingly enough about Greenland’s work is that long before he was crowned the winner, many who had an eye for design had already crowned him the winner.

The young artist who is destined for great things was all smiles and had very little to say that evening. He noted that he was grateful for the opportunity to see his winning design being distributed throughout the country. He is seconded by Aobakwe Letamo (of Lotsane Senior Secondary School) and Soft Motswara (of ABM University) came third. Letamo pocketed P60 000, and Motswara walked home with P50 000.

One of the judges Ofimile Montsiemang explained that they shortlisted 21 artworks, which were cut to the final 10. He said they were looking for original, adaptable (designs that can be redesigned to fit cover) as well as a piece that illustrated that the designer had a good understanding of the theme.
He said that the final 10 designers all had stories to tell but that the winning cover summed up the story, in a winning and uncluttered manner. He encouraged Art teachers to assist the learners when it comes to working on their concepts. “You must help them to learn how to engage through their artworks and tell a winning story,” he said.

Chairperson of the BOT 50 committee, Boyce Sebetela said that a number of the young artists would be exposed to an international workshop and that as the road to the 50th celebrations of Botswana intensified, they were planning to come up with initiatives that would benefit the youth of the country. “We expect to do more next year. We are looking for partners in poetry and essay writing which will be part of the celebrations,” said Sebetela.

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Making outstanding art through waste material

Keletso Thobega

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Following one’s vocational calling can be a tall order in a world that still believes that white-collar work is the only way to make a living. No one knows this better than 28-year-old Khumoyame

Addam Ndove, who is a police officer by profession and an artist by vocation. While he is committed to his work as a law enforcer he dedicates most of his free time to making art. Ndove runs a company called Craft-eyed Designs which specialises in upholstery designing, artistic furniture and décor ornaments, mostly made out of waste materials such as empty oil drums, tyres and pallets, among others. The Francistown born and raised lad tells Vibe that his artistic journey started with a passion he had for art and using recycled material to create distinct new pieces.

One day he got an idea to try out a few art works and he went out to collect raw material and got down to work. “I knew I was talented in hand craft but had never explored my potential. I was impressed with what I managed to do. My work was interesting and outstanding. I also received positive feedback from the public and realised that this was something I could do out of passion and to complement my earnings,” he says.

Ndove explains that Art is a way of expressing himself. “I enjoy art because that is how I communicate and share what is in my mind.” He points out that he is also a businessman so selling his craft was not too difficult as he has the acumen. He however notes that the biggest challenge he faces is that a large number of Batswana do not appreciate art and therefore do not recognise the value of his work. Other challenges he faces include lack of operational space and shortage of capital.

He says that shortage of raw materials limits him from unleashing his full creative potential. Ndove currently runs his company alone and juggles it with his day job. He hopes to one day get an investor to bolster his business so that he can employ other people and grow the enterprise. “I would like to get a spacious workshop and showroom, and also hire relevant employees.” But doing what he loves makes him content. “Bringing an idea to life makes me fulfilled. I always feel great when I see my finished products.”

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BOMU awards go on…

Keletso Thobega

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The 10th annual Botswana Musicians Union (BOMU) awards will be held on 26 January 2019 at GICC. Revellers should expect performances from Lister Boleseng, Nono Siile, Perion, Slizer, Matheke Letane and Kwaito Nation among others. Tickets are said to be already on sale through Webtickets.

The awards will also be broadcasts.
Over the past few weeks there has been confusion over whether the awards will go and this week Phemelo ‘Fresh Les’ Lesokwane officially confirmed that it is all systems go. Artists caused a stir this week on social media when they indicated that was confusion and miscommunication around the awards. But Lesokwane insists that there is nothing confusing going on as the interim committee had been planning the awards for a while now, and had even roped in sponsors.

He said that the awards had been organised since last week but they had to change the date due to a few glitches. Lesokwane says that they had opted for the people’s choice approach to awards. “We have given the public the power to decide who they want to vote for under the different categories. What happens is that when you vote you sms the category and name of the artist to 16565. We are then going to tally the votes when voting lines close on 23 January 2019.

We will then cut down the number of entries based on the number of votes. This will make the process easier for our judges, who will listen to the artists’ CDs and give them points.” He further said that having a high number of votes would not automatically mean that an artist makes it. “One might have many votes but with low quality music and we consider that. We are looking at quality
Lesokwane said that when former chairperson Pagson Ntsie was outsed, the awards were still open. “Registration is still on at BOMU office in Kgolagano at Main mall. Those who had registered can check their documentation.”

Last year BOMU was wrecked by infightings following a ruling that Pagson Ntsie is not the legitimate chairperson of the music body. The ruling was passed in August by the Registrar of Societies. The ruling came following investigations regarding adherence to the BOMU Constitution and corruption claims. Accusations of financial mismanagement and poor leadership also cropped up.

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