About the EMAEP

The Ernest Mancoba Art Education Project began with work on the curriculum by Sokhaya Charles Nkosi and Ezekiel Budeli, Funda Centre arts co-ordinator and teacher respectively, with input from a panel of 10 artists/academics from around the country. The curriculum is in its second draft. Over the last 30 years the Funda Centre has produced artists and art students who proceed to international careers and/or 2nd year art studies at Wits.

With the expertise of media co-ordinator, photographer and filmmaker, Abdulcadir Ahmed, a digital arts curriculum for later introduction at the school will be developed. Digital arts are a much sought after skill by youth and employers. Numerous youth have approached the Trust for this.

Recruitment for the school will use the networks created by the Trusts’ outreach work in 9 provinces, and will be guided by local artists/ teachers ensuring that those with demonstrated aptitude attend the school. Such is the nature of youth unemployment and thirst for opportunities that the school could easily be filled through a simple newspaper advertisement. The networks built will enable a discerning selection, which is essential for the school’s effectiveness.

The development of the EMAEP has alerted the Trust to significant international and local writing on the vital importance of art education – see our pamphlet Why Study Art, which serves as a conceptual framework for the Trust’s intervention in arts education.

It is interesting to note that amongst others, this research indicates the mathematical (geometric fractals) principles of African design and architecture and calls for integration in teaching the humanities and sciences.

The Trust’s efforts to bring to light indigenous visual knowledge is in line with this international cutting edge research.

The Trust has arranged the first young artist’s travelling exhibition for ceramic artist, Sbonelo Tau Luthuli, and through this facilitated his first sales of works to amongst others, the National Gallery and Iziko Social History Collection. Through the Trust’s association with this talented young artist he has agreed to be the ceramics teacher for the EMAEP. This is the kind of turn-around from talent to teaching and sharing skills it is hoped the school will facilitate. Sbonelo is a Durban University of Technology graduate, working in a modern idiom, inspired by the traditional Zulu idiom of ceramics. This African idiom of ceramic production is common with small variations to most language groups in South Africa. It is expected that the exchange between Sbonelo and students from other provinces will develop mutual appreciation of these traditions. Sbonelo works with hand built, open fired ceramics, a relatively easy method to facilitate in the school.

Table showing Cycle of Impact and Change resulting from EMAEP

A. Development of MaterialsIntroduction to Indigenous Visual Art Curriculum
Now in 2nd draft it will be completed within 6 months of the start of the project

Introduction to Indigenous Visual Art Toolkit developed & delivered by internationally recognized experienced black artists & media producers in the following 18 months

B. SchoolAnnual delivery for two years at least of Introduction to Indigenous Visual Art School to 30 people in a residential school. Teaching processes documented, often audio-visually and inform Introduction to Indigenous Visual Art Toolkit Production which comprises 8 workbooks on drawing, painting, printing, ceramics, sculpture, materials, SA arts, career guidance with 30 accompanying short videos
C. Widening AccessIn the third year of the project Introduction to Indigenous Visual Art Toolkits delivered to artist/teachers at community art centres, museums and galleries nation-wide. Also promoted to arts and culture teachers. Support and networking, teaching/guidance provided through interactive web-site & podcasts

Digital Arts Curriculum is developed

The knowledge gathered, recorded and packaged in Column A informs activities in Columns B & C. Activities in Columns B & C provide evaluation, feedback and personnel to guide ongoing work.

Anticipated outcomes of EMAEP

  • 60 graduates of the residential school over two years
  • 100s of graduates of cyber supported teaching toolkit
  • Arts and culture teachers empowered through access to the kit
  • Potentially anybody with access to the kit or a community art centre offering a cyber linkup can work through the kit and take a key step forward in an art or related career
  • Some alumni become art teachers thereby increasing the reach of art education
  • All these services have national reach
  • There is a breakthrough in the crisis in arts education in South Africa

Link to paypal and appeal for funding support