Bulelwa Basse nominated for outstanding poetic voice in creative awards

At the centre of arts and culture, activist Bulelwa Basse’s work is her ability to capture the essence of nation-building.

At the centre of arts and culture, activist Bulelwa Basse’s work is her ability to capture the essence of nation-building.

Published Mar 29, 2024


Arts and culture activist, Bulelwa Basse, has been nominated for Outstanding Performance in the Poetry category in the inaugural Cultural and Creative Industry Awards.

The awards are an integrated all-en-compassing platform for the arts, culture and heritage sector. Sport, Arts and Culture Minister Zizi Kodwa said the department intended to confer these awards annually to leading South African creatives in all the recognised creative sector disciplines and sub-do-mains.

The awards honour those who demonstrate dedication to excellence and shine the spotlight within their artistic space.

Basse, whose work is premised on the preservation of South African heritage through the written and spoken word, continues to excel in her ability to capture the essence of nation-building – a narrative which is apt in the year of commemorating South Africa’s thirty years of democracy.

“Poetry as a medium of expression has the ability to neatly encapsulate the history of a people... It can, within a few stanzas, tell of a country’s legacy,” Basse said. I have had the pleasure to document the human condition of many South Africans – from personal observations of my grandmother’s generation, to my own generation and the one which comes after mine. This is what literature is able to do: It can thread different generations together with words. To be nominated for Outstanding Poetry Performance by the Cultural and Creative Industry Awards is an affirmation that living one’s purpose is an achievement worth the recognition.

Moreso at a time when many creatives question their position within society due to the struggles of an unregulated creative industry.”

“Economic development of the entrepreneurial artist is no easy feat: It requires for one to have more than passion for the arts, it requires for one to establish a talent diversification strategy, which will be able to sustain the artist’s livelihood.

“These are the fundamental dialogues we ought to be holding amongst ourselves as arts practitioners together with the public and private sector including civil society, where community art centres and cultural precincts thrive.” Other nominees in the category are Thekiso Maarma and Onalerona Seana.

Kodwa said the department believes that the awards will make an immense contribution towards unlocking opportunities for our creatives.

“I salute the independent panel of judges who have been appointed to do the most important work of sifting through the many applications received and acknowledge the amount of work that went into the final decisions that led to (the) announcement (of nominees).”

The Cultural and Creative Industry Awards will be held in Sandton, Johannesburg on Saturday.

Cape Times