New Venice exhibition promoting emerging African artists

Italian Insider, 28 June 2021
VENICE - With its current exhibition, Rhythmic Elements, ending, the AKKA Project in Venice is preparing to open its next exhibition, I Exist!, dedicated to Lebo Thoka and Margaret Ngigi, continuing their commitment to give “special attention to Emerging African Artists.”
The project, in collaboration with David Krut Projects, features “two emerging artists from the Continent able to capture with their cameras the endless facets of being a woman in Africa.”
Lebo Thoka was born in Johannesburg where she currently lives and works. Graduated from the Open Window Institute in Pretoria, she has been a freelance photographer since her graduation in 2015. 
In her practice Lebo explores female condition on different levels. 
For the exhibition, she presents part of her series “It is well”: an ode to Karabo (2018), "Seeds of the Dirt” (2020), and two separate works,“Initiation of Mary” and “Black of My Flesh”. 
Lebo pays tribute to women who have been victim to femicidal violence in South Africa. She doesn't want to deny the horror and brutality experienced by women but she wants to show their dignity and glory, more than to portray them “just as victims.”
Margaret Ngigi is a passionate emerging photographer, filmmaker, and film production student at the United States International University-Africa. She started her journey with the camera over the last four years and with filmmaking two years ago. 
For Margaret the focal point in her projects are women, their social roles and issues they face. The body of work included in I Exist!, aims to represent the wedding veil as a way to consolidate women’s social role in the traditional culture of her country, Kenya. 
Margaret’s desire and ability to identify with those young women creates, as for Lebo, an artistic result free of the coldness of a photographic reportage. 
I Exist! is on display in Venice’s AKKA Project gallery from July 6 to August 21.