ARTISTES have been urged to take advantage of the first annual Arts, Innovation and Culture Week scheduled for 21 – 26 September to showcase their wares.
Speaking to the Weekender this week, Lesotho Arts Innovation and Culture Secretary, Relebohile Lemeke, said they would provide a platform for artists to exhibit their products during the event since it also coincides with the hosting of the Southern African Inter Municipal Sports Association (SAIMSA) games.
“Our aim is for visitors to buy products from artistes and also during art exhibitions around Maseru,” Lemeke said.
“The Arts, Innovation and Culture Week intersects with other festivals, and artists will firstly perform at our event and then later proceed to the Morija Arts and Cultural Festival.”
He said artist development would also be explored during the week, with a symposium equipping the artists with the skills of how to sell their products, make use of the internet and the tenets of copyright law among others.
Lemeke also implored Basotho artistes to showcase Lesotho’s unique culture and identity to effectively market the country through tourism, arts and innovation.
“We have a unique culture different from the Swazis and Batswana, and those that have experienced those cultures shouldn’t feel like they know about ours,” he said.
“The premise of the Culture Week is to diversify the tourism product locally and internationally and reigniting the love for culture, music performance arts and social structure.”
Lemeke added that government had shown its commitment to ensuring the Culture Week’s success by delegating Minister of Local Government and Chieftainship Pontšo ‘Matumelo Sekatle and Minister of Tourism, Likeleli Tampane to coordinate SAIMSA and the Culture Week.
Asked what they are expecting from the Arts, Innovation and Culture Week, he said: “Support from people; to recognise the value of art, spend time in exhibitions and watch performances and notice the vibrancy of Maseru.”