by Sicka Star-ban
My Faces and Phases journey started in the year 2013 when I met author and visual activist, Zanele Muholi.
I, Nonkululeko Sharon Mthunzi known as Sicka Star-ban, remember her reaction when she first saw my cousin Nontuthuzelo Mduba and I. Her exact words were “I don’t work with people under the age of 18 years”, we laughed and told her our ages.
A lot was going on that year. It was our first time entering Mr Lesbian Daveyton and my cousin Ntuthu walked away with the title of First Prince and I with the title Mr Personality. It was also the year I started my music career, and not forgetting that it was the beginning of my Faces and Phases journey. My first photo shoot was the day after the pageant at my home in Daveyton right along with Nontuthuzelo Mduba, Lebogang Magaela who was Mr Lesbian Daveyton 2013 and we were in our formal wear. At first I was nervous because I was not used to huge cameras but I soon relaxed.
Muholi told me to relax and so I did and soon got used to it. From thereon, we took amazing portraits. In the Faces and Phases book, two of my pictures are featured, one which was taken on the day of my first shoot with Muholi and the other which was taken at my home in my bedroom while in my traditional/ancestral clothes. In my hand I carried ishoba lamadlozi. I love how my two portraits contradict each other to the viewer but I am a traditional healer as well as a musician/composer. I straddle two worlds that most people deem highly impossible to mix. They say however that I am the living proof that now can be steeped in their traditions and culture but at the same living and creating in the 21st century, a testament that both elements can exist.
I have many goals, hopes and dreams – some which I have attained – but I never pictured myself in a book. To me this is extraordinarily beyond what I had set out to achieve in 2014.
2014 is my year because I was crowned Mr Lesbian Daveyton 2014, I am featured in the Faces and Phases (2006 – 2014) book and my music career is taking gigantic leaps. I had the honor of composing the Faces and Phases song, which I performed at the successful book launch.