Njabala: Holding Space

Photos provided by the Njabala Foundation

FG Foundation teamed up with the Njabala Foundation to host the Annual Njabala Exhibition at the Makerere Art Gallery to celebrate International Women’s Day. This year’s edition, titled “Njabala: Holding Space,” was about the efforts to rest and organize time in a world designed to exploit women constantly.

Njabala is a multi-faceted campaign sourcing inspiration from a popular Ugandan myth of Njabala to facilitate conversations on womanhood. Their goal is to curate periodic exhibitions as well as organize a public program of activities aimed at creating safe spaces for female artists to thrive and blossom.

“Njabala: Holding Space” is the second iteration of the annual exhibition program for the Njabala Foundation, launched in 2021 by Ugandan curator Martha Kazungu. It is centered on and inspired by the Njabala folklore and seeks to facilitate visibility for women artists through thematically curated exhibitions exclusively featuring women artists.

The artists featured are; Pamela Enyonu, Birungi Kawooya, Mable Akeu and Pepita Biraaro. They reflected on the themes through 2022 and created new works for the exhibition. The exhibition also featured excerpts from Gloria Kiconco’s commissioned essay on Rest in a Ugandan context.

The exhibition was open to the public from 8th March – 8th April 2023. During this time, the Njabala Foundation also hosted an artists’ talk and exhibition walk about where Birungi Kawooya and Mable Akeu discussed the unique inspirations for their work.

Download full report here.

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John Mark Bwanika

John Mark Bwanika is a medical doctor and Global E-health specialist. He is a founding partner of Rocket Health Africa, a digital health and Telemedicine Company in Africa, where he serves as the Chief Operations & Research Officer. He has previously worked as a research medical doctor and coordinator of clinical research at the Infectious Diseases Institute (IDI) Limited, Kampala.

Linda Mutesi

Linda is a feminist lawyer, curator, and social entrepreneur. She believes in the sharing of wealth and investment into our communities and explores this work with The Future Generations (FG) Foundation.