ART – A COMMUNITY PASSION
The Maboneng Township Arts Experience is a national public arts initiative that turns homes in townships into galleries and outdoor spaces into performance districts. The staff work humbly with homeowners and families to create a warm intimate arts environment in our townships. After 10 years, The Maboneng Township Arts Experience has turned over 50 homes in South African townships into galleries, exhibited over 40 artists and encouraged township residents to invest in art.
The name Maboneng is a Sesotho word for a place of lights. This followed Alexandra Township being called Dark City by the community. Alexandra Township had no electricity before and hence the name Dark City. After the government brought in the lights, the community renamed their township to Alexandra Maboneng meaning Alexandra, a place of lights.
The organisation’s programmes contribute substantially towards training, women and youth empowerment, income generation, as well as the advancement of transformation in impoverished townships across South Africa. The ongoing programmes impact the cultural, social, economic and environmental conditions of all participants. They transform the Township economy and improve quality of life for the long run. Our activities culminate in annual public arts festivals
“We’ve created an experience that solves the problem of the artist looking for space, the family looking for work and the township looking for its place.”
– Siphiwe Ngwenya (founder)