Text: Keitumetse Ngobeni Images © :Lindokuhle Radebe

A graphic designer by trade, Lindokuhle Radebe was born and raised in the East of Johannesburg. After getting his creative developments certificate from Vega School, he started his own business and works as a freelance creative designer. He juggles art, freelancing and entrepreneurship through prioritising and choosing work wisely.

His curiosity and interest to pursue art illustrations was sparked by folk stories that his grandmother shared with him during his tender years – these stories, for him, captured the essence of African culture and tradition.

As much as his grandmother has planted a seed for art and culture, most of his art pieces were inspired by a lecture he attended by Mbuso Khoza in which Mr Khoza asked his audience a question which has since been in his mind  ‘What are we doing to preserve African Culture and inheritance?’,  a question that has propelled Lindo to channel his actions towards preserving African culture through his art.

“My aim was to record the clothing and accessories that Hlubi men wear. I wanted to reimagine how the average Hlubi man looked like walking through African fields in the 1400’s”

Among a few of his art pieces are Hlubi inspired illustrations, these pieces celebrate men and women belonging to the Hlubi culture, and the Hlubi culture itself. He uses pastel colours with pitch black faceless people to highlight the surroundings that make up African tradition and culture. Lina Iris Viktor, a British-Liberian visual artist from New York, who also uses black for some of her art has influenced Lindokuhle’s approach for application style. Viktor believes that black is a cosmic colour since about 85% of the universe together with the galaxy are dark matter. Lindo’s motive is to remind Africans that we are cosmic.

Lindo would love to see his art at the Guggenheim museum in New York. One of his desires is to see his art exhibited in most institutions which offers visual arts at foundation phase level – to give the children an opportunity to immerse themselves in various forms of art, and be able to interpret what he as a child only could imagine, and any other place where young people can learn about African culture and tradition by a local millennial. He wishes to illustrate more pieces that portray black women as avant-garde or in positions of power.

Lindo’s art can be accessed in his Instagram page @thepoetroom .