2016 has been the year of FAKA. The creative duo of Desire Marea and Fela Gucci have outdone themselves and broken cultural ground with every drop and every performance this year. On the 21st of April 2016 they gave an exhilarating live performance that set the Stevenson SEX exhibit alight. While a new video for ISIFUNDO SOKUQALA – sensual with a touch of the supernatural – has them sketching an imprint on the local cultural scene. For queer culture, for trans culture, for bottoms, for women – for everyone who believes we should be able to be ourselves without fearing for our safety in our so called civilised society. Their performances enlighten and expose ignorance and their space within the current conversation around sex and gender is pioneering and so sexy. In consistently immaculate styling and composed, powerful performances they walk the line between provocation and seduction – posing challenges to the heteronormative hegemony and offering healing and inspiration to those brutalised by it. Currently at the Berlin Bienalle performing their highly anticipated piece titled ‘Bottom’s Revenge’. Their humour, vision and power transcend social censorship and reveal that seduction is a feeling, and sex is something society perverts and polices to serve patriarchy and its princes and princesses.
They took time out of their Bienalle schedules to answer a few questions for us. Read and weep.
When did you realize your creativity and identity could impact your environment?
We realised this when we realised that our own lives were actually conceptual, they were a well executed creative idea that came quite effortlessly from our need to cope with and transcend the social displacement that comes with being black and queer. Our growth as people made us realise that there are more effective ways to navigate the aesthetics, the artefacts, and all the movements that form our identities in ways that might threaten or influence the structural environment we are juxtaposed with on the daily. Seeing how this affects our everyday experience of the world opened us up to very intimate truths about our world and a lot of that informs our practice. We see art as an equally intimate way to communicate (not so) new truths, and it’s the best way to plant new ideas in the minds of people who consume it. Art has the power to influence culture and for us culture is the highest governing power
What does the future hold for FAKA in SA and beyond?
We are releasing our EP Bottoms Revenge very soon. Beyond that our focus will be to create tangible structures that can reflect our ideology as artists, structures that will hopefully be able to support the upcoming legendary children. We have been fortunate to receive multiple platforms and our voice is strengthened by that. Every young black queer artist deserves that but it is not the case and we don’t want them to go as far as we have gone to be heard.
What message do you have for other men trying to find ways to be loving and sexual outside the pervasive S.African toxic and violent masculinities?
Insert Fumbatha May’s “A love letter to the Black Man”.
This performance comes at a critical time for marginalized people’s internationally, do these events inform your work at all?
Yes, and they always will because we exist there too.
In a country terrorised by violence against the female, the queer, the trans and whoever else doesn’t fit into the missionary mould of god fearing christian or suited up capitalist, FAKA have come to remind us that the human body is for fun, for sex and we should all have the freedom to enjoy it without shame or fear. FAKA!