GALLERY: O, What a jol!

By Pheladi Sethusa and MfunekoToyana

The weather wasn’t warm but thank God neither was the beer.  The atmosphere in the beer garden was positively sizzling.  O-week offered students a great way to start the year, explore the campus and get to know each other.  The fun isn’t over yet, with tonight’s  Fresher’s Bash sure to be a razzmatazz humdinger. Ziyawa Mo.

GALLERY: Highlights from Power Reporting 2013

This year’s Power Reporting Conference hosted by Wits Journalism was the biggest they’ve hosted to date. Three days saw close to 300 delegates from around the world coming together to discuss abd debate issues central to investigative journalism.

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These banners were littered all over the FNB on West Campus to welcome all delegates to the conference. Photo: Prelene Singh

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Delegates eager to read the special Power Reporting edition of the Wits Vuvuzela. Photo: Prelene Singh

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Michael Salzwedel gave a class on Google tools and showed attendees how to use them. Photo: Pheladi Sethusa

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Delegates taking notes and asking speakers questions. Pictured are Anina Mumm (left) and Izak Minnaar. Photo: Caro Malherbe

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Alex Kotlowitz awed and inspired delegates with his opening talk that spoke to non-fiction storytelling. Photo: Pheladi Sethusa

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Nigerian delegates arriving on the first day of the conference. Photo: Nolwazi Mjwara

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Data journalism classes proved popular this year, most sessions were as well attended as the one pictured. Photo: Shandukani Mulaudzi

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Luc Hermann gave a powerful session on pharmacutical drugs. Photo: Shandukani Mulaudzi

No pride at Wits

WHITE NOISE: The exhibition Substation art gallery was poorly attended. Photo: Pheladi Sethusa

WHITE NOISE: The exhibition Substation art gallery was poorly attended. Photo: Pheladi Sethusa

By Nolwazi Mjwara and Pheladi Sethusa 

Empty lecture rooms where talks were planned, no information tent and an exhibition with no pull are some of the things that contributed to the dark cloud that hung over this year’s Wits Pride celebrations.

Wits Vuvuzela headed out earlier in the week hoping to bump into people dressed in rainbow colours, ready to see all the events but all those hopes were dashed by a lack of noticeable fanfare for Wits Pride. [pullquote align=”right”]“I had no idea that it’s Pride this week. I think they haven’t advertised it enough”[/pullquote]

It’s pride?

Witsie after Witsie had no idea that it was Wits Pride this week, largely due to the lack of visible advertising around campus.

“I had no idea that it’s Pride this week. I think they haven’t advertised it enough,” said Jabulani Moyo, 3rd year BSc Eng.

A daily exhibition held at the Substation art gallery was poorly attended. Few came to see the beautiful self-portraits by artist by Germaine de Larch.

Ella Kotze, programme officer of the Transformation Office, defended the promotion of Wits Pride on campus.

“In terms of marketing, we have put close to 1 000 posters up across all of Wits’ campuses. We have been very active on Facebook and Twitter, and we have also had a very good relationship with Voice of Wits, who has gone out of their way to promote our events and the whole concept of Wits Pride,”she said.

Kotze agreed that attendance at some events was disappointing, particularly Tuesday’s panel discussion and films.

PORTRAIT: Photography by Germaine de Larch was on sale, at a pricey R1 500 a portrait. Photo: Pheladi Sethusa

PORTRAIT: Photography by Germaine de Larch was on sale, at a pricey R1 500 a portrait. Photo: Pheladi Sethusa

However, Kotze said that an information stand and tours to Hillbrow and Constitutional Hill were very successful.

“Contributing factors are possibly varied and may include timing, as well as type of activity – perhaps Witsies don’t like movies as much as we thought,” Kotze said.

We need pride

“Pride is very, very, very necessary on campus,” said Wits Pride organising committee member Jeremiah Sepotokele, 3rd Law.

He believes the overriding culture on campus was still “very hetero-normative”, especially in a lot of the men’s residences like Knockando.

“As men’s res there’s a culture that’s very hetero, violent and masculine. That’s problematic,” said Sepotokele.

Many students start at Wits start out as homophobic but their perspective changes.

Sam Allan, 2nd year BSc, said that she was ignorant of gay rights before she had gay friends.

“I couldn’t stand gay people before,” she said.

It was only after spending time with gay people that did she begin to accept them for who they were.

Allan said she would have liked to have gone to Wits Pride events, had she known about them.

WITH GALLERY: The 1913 Land Act realised through photos

A crowd of eager art lovers could not resist the magnetism of the historical photographic archive dating back to the 1800’s and commemorating the 1913 Land Act.

The exhibition Umhlaba 1913-2013: Commemorating the 1913 Land Act opened this week at the Gertrude Posel Core Gallery in the Wits Art Museum.

1913 Land Act

This year  marks 100 years since the 1913 Land Act was passed. The act helped to successfully disenfranchise indigenous South African’s in terms of land ownership and its repercussions are still felt today.

[pullquote align=”right”]”No single photographic exhibition could illustrate the full diversity of our complex realities”[/pullquote]

Curator of the Umhlaba Exhibiton, Bongi Dhlomo-Matloa said that the exhibition’s purpose was to help people remember their history. “Commemoration is a relative term here, we are remembering this act that left blacks with only 7% of the land,” she said. Dhlomo-Matloa coincidently wore a black and white ensemble matching the monochromatic nature of most of the photographs on display. She said it was merely a coincidence but nonetheless she carried the colours of our history around her neck and on her shoulders.

Remembering history

Next to the exhibition’s entrance was a plaque detailing the aims, limitations and history behind the curation. “No single photographic exhibition could illustrate the full diversity of our complex realities,” but this by no means, kept the artist/photographer from making an attempt  to illustrate those complex realities.

This history could not only be seen, but was also heard as  jazz, afro-soul and choral music ushered people up the ramp and along the walls of the gallery. It was quite jarring  to hear the juxtaposition between Miriam Makeba’s voice sing Gauteng and then immediately after, a choir sing Die Stem, while standing at the wall with all the apartheid-era photography on it.

Photographic reality

[pullquote]“Commemoration is a relative term here, we are remembering this act that left blacks with only 7% of the land”[/pullquote] Dlomo-Matloa went on to say that these photos were used as they “are very exact” and can therefore accurately depict the reality they captured. The first colour picture seen in the gallery was on the apartheid wall, a photograph by David Goldblatt. It was taken in 1987 at a resettlement camp in the Wittlesea district of the then Ciskei.

Fourth year photography student Melissa Bennett, said  she loved how the photos told a story of overcoming boundaries. She was also particularly intrigued by the way the photos had been arranged  according to a historical timeline.

Dhlomo-Matloa said that the exhibition  was displayed in chronological sequence laid out in a timeline to reflect how things and people changed as time went on. Although a huge amount of images were available, budget and space constraints restricted how many photographs could be exhibited.

The photography on display showcases some of the most talented photographers in the country, like Peter MagubanePaul Weinburg and Ingrid Hudson.

After a walk about the whole gallery, the reality of our history was more than apparent. The exhibition will be on display until January 2014.

Watch the video below in which curator Dhlomo-Matloa talks about the exhibition:

 

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Weekend hotspots in Braam

#Teamvuvu went out to some of the weekend hotspots in Braam, to see where all the fun is. The team of photographers consisted of: Pheladi Sethusa, Nokuthula Manyathi, Shandukani Mulaudzi, Sibusisiwe Nyanda and Nolwazi Majwara.

Photography exhibition illuminates the inner city

Earlier this year Gauteng City Region Observatory (GCRO) launched a photography competition, which ended with an exhibition of 62 of the most powerful photo’s received.

Entrants were asked to send through photographs of theirs which depicted their perceptions of the Gauteng City Region, said finalist and Witsie Thato Nkoane. Nkoane came in 4th place for her photo called ‘Johannesburg My City’, which was entered under the politics and governance sub topic.

“There were about 600 entries,” said Nkoane. The ecompetition was made open to students and staff af all university;s in the Gauteng region. The prizes offered were to the value of R15 000. Of wich Nkoane won R1000 and would like to use that money to buy herself a Lomography camera.

The final event came in the form of an exhibition at the FADA Gallery at UJ. There were over 250 people in attandance at the launch of the exhibition last week.

The judges were two photographers, Jodi Bieber and Roger Ballen. The third judge was Khwezi Gule who is the chief curator of the HectorPieterson Museum.

Potsiso Phasha, from GCRO said that “The exhibition, entitled ‘Portraits of a City-Region’, is an illustration of the Gauteng City-Region as a place we interact with with a strong ‘personality’ of its own and one with which we are constantly engaged in building relationships with.

GCRO ran the competition andexhibition in partnership with FADA Gallery at UJ. The GCRO is a partnership between the University of the Witwatersrand, the University of Johannesburg and Gauteng Provincial Government.

The top five winning images where taken by the following people (and appear below):

  1. Blaq Smith
  2. Jenna-Lee Ferrer
  3. Irene Lambrianos
  4. Thato Nkoane
  5. Martin Bolton
Winning photo, 'Sunday Morning' by UJ student Blaq Smith.

Winning photo, ‘Sunday Morning’ by UJ student Blaq Smith.

 

In second place, 'F-CK' by UJ student Jenna-Lee Ferrer.

In second place, ‘F-CK’ by UJ student Jenna-Lee Ferrer.

 

Third place went to Irene Lambrianos from the Design School South Africa. Her photography is titled 'City'.

Third place went to Irene Lambrianos from the Design School South Africa. Her photography is titled ‘City’.

 

in fourth place representing Wits, "My City" by Thato Nkoane.

In fourth place representing Wits, “My City” by Thato Nkoane.

 

in fifth place 'The Asphalt' by UJ winner, Martin Bolton.

In fifth place ‘The Asphalt’ by UJ winner, Martin Bolton.

 

Lomo walk in the city

Wits Vuvuzela journalist Pheladi Sethusa participated in a photo walk hosted by the Lomography Embassy store in Braamfontein this past weekend.

The idea behind the walk is for participants to hire out a lomography camera for R180, then go out and take photo’s. When you hire a camera you get to keep your film. You could bring your own camera and only pay R150 for the walk.

These are Pheladi’s images as she followed other enthused photographers as they roamed the quiet inner city that morning.

 

 

A long way to go for Wits Rugby

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By Jay Caboz

FNB Wits have been left a mountain to climb after falling to bottom place with a 63-24 loss to FNB University of Johannesburg after squaring off in their first Varsity Cup match.

“The match obviously didn’t pan out the way we would have wanted but we have to take the positives out of it. We started the game too slow and after UJ got a few early tries we were playing catch up, which is never an easy thing to do,” said Wits Captain Devin Montgomery.

UJ ran in an overwhelming 9 tries to Wits’ three. Wits also fell short of a needed bonus point by a single try in their last two games. The points would have narrowed the broadening gap between Ikeys and Shimlas who are now four and six points ahead of Wits.

Luckily, Wits’ position in the Varsity Cup is secured for the 2013 season. Montgomery explained that there was no relegation zone this year guaranteeing that Wits will have two years in the competition.

“This is to ensure that we are given a fair chance to learn and adapt to this high level of rugby,” he said, “We know that every game in this competition is going to be tough and each week it’s never going to get any easier.”

“We have defended a lot this season and there has been a big gap between the number of tackles we have had to make compared to our opponents in every game.”

Wits are gaining a reputation of a never-say-die attitude on the field. During their match against UJ, Wits showed brief moments of brilliance when going forward. One of the key members to watch is Number 8 Carel Greeff who has proven to be an influential player in the squad having added another two tries to his five for the season in four matches.

“Carel is a great player and is playing great rugby at the moment. We have a couple of go-to ball carriers in the team, one of which is Carel,” said the captain.

The No. 8 has become well known for his crashing runs through opposing lines and he is a tenacious tackler that has made him an important element in the squad.

Montgomery said the “this Varsity Cup campaign is about learning and gaining experience playing at this top level of rugby for us.”

The team’s goals were to work hard in training and aim to perform for the full 80 minutes with making as little mistakes as possible.

“Wits will earn the reputation of being a difficult fixture I have no doubt about that. The team has a special bond and because we spend so much time together there is a family sense amongst the team,” he said.

For more Varsity Cup action follow the link

FNB WIts vs FNB NWU-PUKKE

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