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On KANAAL and TANGAZA Magazine’s “In Good Hands” Showcase

On KANAAL and TANGAZA Magazine’s “In Good Hands” Showcase

KANAAL, a Lagos-based creative platform conceptualized and hosted a 3-day multi-disciplinary artist showcase entitled ‘In Good Hands’ with an array of Nairobi’s emerging creative talent. The series of events, which ran from the 25th-27th November included an exhibition, musical performances and a party organized in collaboration with one of East Africa’s leading youth culture-focused publications, TANGAZA Magazine.

Visual artist, KATANU and Princess Ebi, Founder of KANAAL

“We really wanted our first event in Nairobi to be a celebration of the breadth of creative talent coming out of the city. We thought it was important to take an interactive approach to it, fusing both visual and performing arts as a way of communicating the cohesiveness of it all, and really just to prove (to nobody in particular) that Nairobi’s creative scene is in good hands.” – Princess Adaeze Ebi, lead curator of “In Good Hands” and co-founder of KANAAL.

The exhibition opening night featured artworks from two Kenyan female artists, Katanu Kay Sanna and Taabu Munyoki, in collaboration with Nitakach0, an imaginative Kenyan set designer and filmmaker, exploring themes unique to Kenyan youth identities. Katanu’s selected pieces are explorations of abundance, set in a bountiful garden, similar to the ones in Mariakani that initially inspired the series. Similarly, Taabu Munyoki’s work explores the role of hair and salons as markers of culture, information exchange and safety – the series features a number of smaller works that juxtapose the old and the new. Her works were displayed in a recreated salon, featuring several uniquely Kenyan hair products and props.

The opening night also included musical performances from an exciting lineup of Kenyan artists. R&B newcomer, Andyah welcomed guests with soulful acoustic renditions of her songs “Prayer” and “Less/More”. Afro-Indie hidden gem, Kinoti serenaded the crowd with emotive recitals of hits such as “Ni We” and “Enough’. The final act was Kenya’s alternative hip-hop powerhouse, mau from nowhere, who had the crowd on their feet with a stellar performance of crowd favorites such as “Our Favorite Songs” and an unreleased track that had everyone doing the electric slide.

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The joyful momentum nurtured from the exhibition opening was carried forward to the second night with a well- curated dance party that put Nairobi at its center. The party stuck to the theme of community, and featured a lineup of some of Nairobi’s most exciting DJs including BBY, Mo-Nzo and Hiribae.

“We had around 300 people attending the different events, which definitely speaks to the fact that people in Nairobi want more highly-curated events that spotlight underground and emerging artists. We just need more funding and investment.” – Naila Aroni, Managing Editor, TANGAZA Magazine.

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