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The “Art” of Collaboration

I remember attending a Pan-African arts and culture festival where selected artists from 53 African countries came together in the North African country of Algeria for 21 days to share and celebrate the diversity of the various art forms on the African continent. We were all housed in one “village”: the memorable and unforgettable Village des Artistes which overlooks the Mediterranean Sea in the city of Algiers; a place where all the trees stand tall and proud, neatly painted white at the base of their trunks, I always say in Algeria the trees wear socks. The village had been specially constructed for the festival and not one single drop of alcohol was allowed to pass beyond the heavily armed security at the gates since we all had to observe and respect the religion of our host nation. All the participants and delegates lived in close proximity and in our very sober and clear minded states, it didn’t take us very long to realize that although we all shared one common denominator and identity, the fact that we were all Africans, we could not freely communicate with each other… CONTINUE READING


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