2014 Oct. 22: Paris meets Aurora Young Female Photographers

by Thobe Gumede

It is Tuesday, 21st Oct. 2014 in the afternoon at Aurora GHS where guest speakers come and share expertise with young photographers.

The interaction started with a traditional icebreaker, a good meal, brought by the visitor for the photography learners at Aurora Girls High School. The learners had been waiting in anticipation to meet the guest speaker of the day, Veronica Noseda, a member of Equipe Les Dégommeuses, Paris, France.


The AGHS PhotoXP learners after guest speaking session. © Lerato Dumse (2014)

The AGHS PhotoXP learners after guest speaking session.
© Lerato Dumse (2014)


Introductions were in order and the learners were happy to hear that Veronica was impressed with their work. She liked the fact that the learners have their personal perspectives and own realities’ which is priceless and is a great start to being good photographers, writers or filmmakers.

They were both excited and shy to introduce themselves until the journalist, soccer player and activist introduced herself to the students, and later emphasized that, that’s how the learners should also introduce themselves wherever they are, clear, loud and proud.

Veronica shared with them that she spent the past 15 years living in France and it is during these years that she met Zanele Muholi, a South African activist and a photographer who initiated the meeting, and worked with her on a number of projects including the documentary which was screened minutes later.

The documentary titled “Foot for Love” by Equipe Les Dégommeuses was screened at Aurora Girls High School for the 2014 PhotoXP learners was produced during the 2012 Paris Pride week in France.
It tells the story of trip that Thokozani Football Club (TFC) took and how they spent their time in Paris.
The team is named after Thokozani Qwabe, a young lesbian victim of hate crime who was murdered in 2007.
The documentary played on the small screen laptop and the learners gathered closely. Veronica translated when people in the documentary spoke in French to ensure that the viewers understood what was going on.

Discussions followed after the screening, and then there were questions and answers.
Q1. How did the French audience react when they saw black South African lesbians parading on their streets?

VN Answer: The French were both welcoming and curious and some of them joined in after they find out what the parade was about.

Q2. Did you get support from the community?

Answer: Yes, the community showed great support and they were extremely happy to march and sing with the Thokozani Football Team.

Q3. What challenges did you face when you edited the documentary?

VN Answer: There weren’t that many challenges other than technical problems of which were overcome easily since it was a collective project, the documentary cost nothing and some of the people volunteered with their skills and some provided their video footage.
Sometimes we would post on facebook to ask for assistance with fixing technical challenges that were beyond us.

Q4. What is your organization doing for the Thokozani Football Club?

VN: Our organization worked with Thokozani Football Club to show solidarity and visibility of black South African lesbians at the height of hate crimes in South Africa. This was to show the realities of what is currently going on in SA which is not seen on mainstream television in France.

Q#5. How different or similar is the lesbian scene in France compared to the South African lesbians?

VN: We don’t know about hate crimes but some of us are also discriminated against and face a lot of homophobia as well.

Veronica went on to explain that the visual part of the documentary was to start conversations about human rights issues such as women’s rights to equality, homosexuality and so forth.

She also stressed to the learners that everything is interesting, explaining to them how important it is to observe things that happen around them, and encouraging them to take more photos and videos.
A follow up documentary titled Team Spirit was produced and directed by Thembela ‘Terra’ Dick which focuses on the lives of some TFC soccer players back in Umlazi township, Durban.
It was premiered at IFAS, Johannesburg during the International Day Against Homophobia (IDAHO).



Related articles



2014 Oct. 16: The lawyer in the classroom





Previous links


2014 Oct.:  Long trip to Cape Town from Johannesburg




2014 Oct. 7:  Robbed while shooting




2014 Sept. 30:  “I truly love Cape Town”




2014 Aug. 30: Insightful analysis from the guest speaker




2014 Aug. 30: Young aspiring photographers experimenting lithography




2014 Aug. 28: Fine Artists on importance of being creative




2014 Aug.1: InterGenerational conversation with current and future stars




2014 July 16: Through the eyes of young women photographers



2014 July 12:   From Soweto to Paris for the love of photography




2014 July 13:  “Give children cameras not candies”








This entry was posted in 2012 Paris Pride, Another Approach Is Possible, Archived memories, Art Is A Human Right, Art is Queer, Art Solidarity, Articles, Articulation, Artist Talk, Arts & Culture, Arts & Sports, As we are, Attention, Audience, “Foot for Love", Beautiful faces, Beautiful people, Before US, Before You, Being conscientized, Blackness, Captioned, Captured, Career, Caring citizens, Caring for our female youth, Celebrating Women, Celebration, Characters, Citizenship, Comment, Comments from the audience, Commitment, Community based media, Community education, Community outreach, Community work, Connected souls, Connections, Consideration, Creating awareness, Description, Details, Different positions, Documentary screening, Documentation; Filming; Photography; Community, Documenting our own lives, Documenting realities of the townships, Education, educator at Aurora Girls High School, Emotional support, Empowerment, Equipe Les Degommeuses, From Paris to Soweto, Introductions, Reviving the culture of reading and writing, revolution, Sharing, soccer player, Social responsibility, Solidarity, South Africa, South African townships, South African visual history through the eyes of young women, Speaking for ourselves, Support, Supporters, Supporting each other, Teaching young women photography, Testimonies from Aurora photographers, Textualizing Our Own Lives, Thobe Gumede, Time, together, Together we can, Veronica Noseda, Videographer, Visibility, Vision, Visual activism, Visual activism is a language, Visual democracy, Visual historical initiative, Visual history, Visual history is a Right not a luxury, Visual Language, Visual Power, Visual Voices, We Are You, We Care, We Love Photography, We Still Can with/out Resources, We were (t)here, Women's power, Women's Work, Women; Voices; Writings; Education; Traditions; Struggles; Cultures, Writing is a Right, Young Black Women and Photography, Young female photographers from Aurora, Youth voices. Bookmark the permalink.

1 Response to 2014 Oct. 22: Paris meets Aurora Young Female Photographers

  1. Mpho says:

    These girls will definitely go far. All these motivations will really shape them. Keep up Zaa

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s