• … there is a need/urgency behind finding ways of locating, documenting and archiving isinxibo kwaXhosa. We need to encourage critical reflection on dress sensibilities as it is not one of the things that is formally taken into account by our own (amaXhosa as well as academics). These are conversations that should be held and had more publicly, in common settings, and that through this process we are able to open up critical reflections on so much more.

    Professor Ncedile Saule

    Rhodes University, African Language Studies

With these words the material is affirmed of its value for not just city/contemporary audiences but also audiences who live ezilalini who might grapple with why they should continue to uphold these histories when everything outside of them continues to move further away from their indigenous knowledges and languages.

Supported by the writings of Mr S.K. Bongela in Isihlonipho amongst amaXhosa (2001) which offers a window into the relationship between  isihlonipho and various African indigenous groups like that of amaXhosa, the podcast begins to draw the parallels between dress (dress sensibilities) nesihlonipho.  How does isihlonipho come to inform relationships/relations to isintu kwaXhosa?

“Isinxibo sethu will/has experienced changes, these changes being izinto that will happen in front of our very eyes and some of these changes are very illegitimate in the sense of the culture,” but with digital works like that of the podcast we find new ways of creating placeholders/vestiges for this (re)newed documentation.

Imiphindo is about bringing different facets zobuXhosa to the foreground adding to the many eruptions of (k)new knowledges that keep coming forth from African and diaspora creatives who are making their upbringing more visible in the contemporary sphere. Siyazilanda and in turn others are also returning. These works have made older generations like that of my mothers find renewed pride in their identities when our political history had previously told them to forget and perform a falsehood of identity that made them deny themselves so they could pass into the norms of those times.

Visit Spotify or Apple Podcasts to listen in on the podcasts collections. 

Join us as we listen to Imiphindo kwaXhosa.

Production team:

Executive Producer - Bongani Tau, Content Advisor - Sihle Sogaula, Graphic Designers - 2DOTS Space Agency, Video and sound editing - Siviwe James, Curator - Siviwe James, Text by Siviwe James, Xhosa advisor - Ms Nobuhle James

All Digital Collage artworks courtesy of Siviwe James.

UN/FOLDING_RE/FOLDING_FOLDED is nestled under THE FOLD – a creative and collaborative research project led by the African Fashion Research Institute in partnership with Creative Nestlings Foundation for the New Narratives Programme 2023