With the entertainment industry reeling from Covid-19, ‘The Thapong Artist of the Year’ competition is looking to provide a little relief with a bumper payday.
To be held under the theme ‘Go jewa art – exhibit your best work and win’, a record P50, 000 awaits this year’s winner.
The award ceremonies will take place at its traditional host venue, Thapong Visual Arts Centre and although a date for the event has not yet been set, the deadline for submission is slated for 31 October.
The 16th edition of the awards will coincide with the BTC Phonebook Cover competition, an initiative where the winning design is worth a cool P50, 000.
Speaking to Voice Entertainment this week, BTC Corporate Communications and PR Manager, Golekanye Molapisi explained they were desperate to give back to local artists following one of the most challenging years in recent history.
“We are excited to be collaborating with Thapong Visual Arts Centre in empowering artists yet again especially this year when the creative industry has been hit hard by the Covid-19 pandemic. Most creatives did not manage to create income in the past nine months due to the pandemic. This is an opportunity for BTC and Thapong to give back and help cushion the impact the virus has had on the industry.”
The 2021 Phone Book Cover design competition for young creatives is themed, ‘Turning a Global Challenge into Local Opportunities with BTC@40’.
The competitions form part of a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between the two parties towards the promotion of the arts and creative sector in Botswana to the tune of P1.7 million.
Highlighting why he was so desperate for the awards to take place this year, the Center Coordinator, Reginald Bakwena said, “We really want these awards to happen to waken the industry.
“You can imagine this year we have only had three exhibitions, which is unheard of in our history. So with these awards, we hope to inject a little of income back into the industry.”
Last year, the BTC Phone Book Cover competition was won by Lambert Baikakedi of Kgari Sechele II Senior Secondary School who walked away with P40, 000.
Phenyo Moatlhodi, a talented ceramist, was crowned the 2019 Artist of The Year, taking home P45, 000 for his clay masterpiece, title ‘Marakanelong’.
As is tradition, the awards are open to Thapong Visual Arts Centre members from different art disciplines, including young artist, photography, printmaking, painting, installation, graphic design and sculpture.