"We wanted to adopt a multidisciplinary approach to exploring various taboo topics in our communities. Creatively, we challenged ourselves to tap into diverse art-forms. Between the three of us, we produced a musical track, visual art piece and a filmed conversation.
Tapping into these diverse art-forms allowed us to explore different themes and ultimately express different experiences and viewpoints within those art-forms. For example, Official Stino and Lydia Tesema's song "Get It Right" (part 1) is a vulnerable expression of the learning, overcoming and succeeding during the pursuit of a passion.
Part 1 & 2: Get It Right (song and visual design)
The song expresses various emotions surrounding family expectations, generational disconnect, financial hardship and systemic limitations.
For part 2, a visual design was created to support the musical track. We engaged a POC film photographer to capture photos of Stino and Lydia in Stino's self-built recording studio. We experimented with red and yellow lights for the purpose of expressing strong opposing emotions.
The aim was to create a visual piece that closely captures the emotions that Stino and Lydia express in their track.
Part 3: Ownership: A filmed conversation exploring the lack of ownership within the African Australian community.
Content Warning: "For the purpose of this video, the term 'black' or 'black community' is being used to refer to African Australians or members of the community with African descent. I acknowledge that Australia's Indigenous (Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander) Peoples have long identified with the term Black; more specifically, as Blak (or Blackfullas)."
Finally, part 3 experimented with a more directed approach to tackling some of the topics explored in the project. Lydia Tesema and Romain Ilunga curated and co-hosted a panel discussion which engaged African Australian entrepreneurs to unpack the various and complex reasons for the lack of ownership within the African Australian community.
The conversation took a deep dive into the fears, desires, support and lack of support surrounding ownership. Our intention was to encourage risk-taking (in this context) and demonstrate that we are not alone."
"We produced a three-part multidisciplinary project that explored inequity and disadvantage within our individual lived experiences and the broader African Australian community. Part 1) A musical track was written, recorded and produced, Part 2) A visual art piece was created using film photography and graphic design techniques and Part 3) A filmed conversation was presented and captured live at black-owned, Vola Foods.
We feel incredibly encouraged for being selected to produce this work. We are extremely grateful for the opportunity to platform content that is deeply meaningful to us with the sincere support of MAV, each step of the way."
Presented as part of MAV’s Ahead of the Curve program.
Supported by The Victorian Department of Families, Fairness and Housing.