I was born third a Nubian.
A Maassai, I am the one they call MAKEBA.
Walking these township streets as though diamonds lay at my feet.
Gliding on gravel from the ghetto to Greece,
Leaving behind a fragrance so sweet.

by Audrey Nyamucherera

MAKEBA – a title that holds incomparable weight and privilege, interpreted across many cultures and forms to arrive at one single destination, the championing of the Black woman. It means, Queen, Goddess, The benevolent creator, selflessness, a bringer of light and in Hebrew defined, the Queen of Sheba.

 Multi-disciplined creatives gathered as a collective to awakenthis pride piece in the glory of the matriarch. In a time where women of the world still scream to be heard, and whisper stories of power and presence to the young. We are open and ready to receive, some are moved, moved with intention, transformed into purposeful action.

 Pioneered by South African artist Rabatho Laka, who has not only been inspired, but guided by Nubian women throughout his artistic history till present, MAKEBA, is a collaborative masterpiece. This artwork speaks to the unconditional power and love that stems from the living deity that is woman. Their ability to create and nurture from nothing, the subtle and incomparable power, rooted in unconditional love.

 To fully awaken this piece, allied creation was required. Rabatho Laka assembled poets, musicians, professionals from various disciplines. This piece not only came to life through illustrative art but in poetry and live performance (the story & body) performed and written by Mamolefe Molefe and Reorata Mashaba, music(the sounds) by Thato Simelane all spearheaded by the creative direction of Rabatho Laka and assistant creative direction from Audrey Nyamucherera. A project brought forth as one by many, highlighting the need for us all to take arms in this fight, whether woman, man or they.

 A piece that says I see myself, we see you, and imploring us all to continue opening our eyes. She is as essential as water for life on earth, the air that we breathe, the ground for growth.

 She should not be shunned or displaced from pivotal checkpoints of our Sapien existence, as has been done across the history of human civilisation, for without her there would not be none. This collective decided to embellish on her sovereign existence, hoping to bring others into the fold, to challenge the multiple structures of oppression holding the best of us back.

MAKEBA Speed Art: https://youtu.be/jtzkOOFoNm8


Stay Bless,

Stay Broke.

“I’m inspired by historical South African female liberation leaders such as Charlotte Maxeke (The Mother of Black Freedom) and Mariam Makeba (Mama Africa), who have a strong historical significance but are exiled from our education system,  preventing them from becoming a compass for our youth.“Rabatho Laka


Artist: @rabathlaka

Writers: @mo.lefe & @rl_ratalove

Skit writers: @audrey_is_shona & @rabatholaka

Music: @aulewhan

Creative Direction: @rabatholaka & @audrey_is_shona