Iso Lembongi Creations is a non-profit organisation based in Kwa-Thema, committed to provide a platform for artists in South Africa for their inspiration and empowerment. They do that by promoting opportunities to support, connect and grow artists, through networking, mentoring, developing as well as recognising excellence in artists. It was formally registered on 14 August 2017 and has since established projects to benefit individuals of all ages interested on developing and nurturing their skills in the creative space like creative writing, reciting, performance, including visual art and many other different art forms. They have several projects that are developed to cater for different age groups however they mainly focus on children and the youth from disadvantaged backgrounds, they provide them with opportunities that stimulate creativity and allow them to network with others and share information. The organisation has been operating under a zero budget and has been depending on small contributions made by some of its members and community members who supports the initiative.
Play your Art, established by Iso Lembongi is a platform for local artists to showcase their talents, market their work and themselves as artists. It started in August 2018 and since it was women’s month they decided to make the project about women. Celebrating women, raise awareness of women abuse through the arts and just taking care of women. The play your Art project is a series of monthly shows that allows all forms of art also encourages creativity collaborations and they are always open for aspiring artists to join them, they are captured then promoted on social media platforms. “To stimulate creativity and brighten the future” is their slogan.
One of their shows was called “Molo nkazana”- which translates as “Hey lady” in isiXhosa, they also hosted a poetry show called “Take me back” in September which was aimed at celebrating KwaTsaDuza poetry legends that started with poetry way back , legendary poets like Size 10, Bhut’ Lolly and the likes of Taboo Picture This, showing the young poets how it was back in the days and giving insight on poetry. In October they invited different artists to Play their Art, visual artists, musicians and poets. The last show they hosted was in November which had a main act who was Mzikantu, who is one of the greatest poets in history with more than 200 written poems. Members are usually given stationery giveaways for scribbling and just personal use, they however decided to flip things and give guests who could answer questions the giveaways. Iso Lembongi’s Play Your Art project is held regularly throughout the year, follow their Facebook page to know when the next project will be held.