Why am I so obsessed with the nude African male figure? As an artist am at a stage where I want to strip myself off or should I rather say; I am stripping myself off everything, I have been taught as a black African man.
One always hears, this is “African” and that is “non-African” but when we look into our history as black men, in fact as Africans, nothing has limited our naked truth.
I ask myself time and time again, where is this great African book that limits me so much? Who wrote this African book? What are the reasons behind these laws?
One doesn’t have to be an academic to realise that those laws that are spoken of so often, reference the dogma of Western Society, leaving most of our people hungry of their birthright, spiritual key to fulfilment.
Society or black culture has progressed to far that our identity has been lost in images that colonialist have portrayed of what and who we are in our contemporary culture. Progress in this case can be viewed as regress, because in moving with the ‘times’ we have given away who we are to the ages, lost in space and time.
I for one, have been misguided to what or who I should be as a black man in my space. The space I call my own have been infiltrated by politically motivated or propaganda of an African Misguidance.
My journey to unearth the African men is of a simple note, to be truthful to my purpose on Earth without arresting my potential to the doctrine of yesteryears. To wake up and not know ones identity is a sin.
I am sadden that as a black man, I shall forever be compared to my white counterpart. That my abilities alone, do not make me great enough to sit on a table baring the fruits of my people.
So what is it, to be an African men? I am not one to answer that, as I am on a journey to unearth that identity within myself. I cannot and will not conclude the identity of an African as this is a journey to find that voice of Africanism without imposing my judgement.
Therefore all that I can say is this, there is something powerful in stripping off the image that society, consciously or unconsciously, have impose on a black men. Unless we allow a black man to be free of dogma imposed on him by ‘native noble’ judgements, we are as a black society are going to lose our men.
So I shall continue to strip down black men, I will undress the teachings of religions, until our core, our vulnerability is exposed to the world.
One more cliche, We Are Human After All.
By Neo Motloung