18:00 SAST

18:00  SAST

The Grim Adventures of Lennox Sebe

Exorcising the Ukuza kaNxele Phantom

Masego Musi

BArch Hons 2022

Unit Leader: Tuliza Sindi
Unit Assistant: Tshwanelo Kubayi
Unit Assistant: Miliswa Ndziba

Unsettling Ground: Beyond the Terra Nullius
Lennox Sebe was the president of the Ciskei Homeland/Bantustan from 1981 to 1994. He was known, and is still remembered by some, for his dictatorial style of leadership. It is also known that many people who disobeyed the Ciskei government were killed by Sebe and his brutal Ciskei Defence Force. The Grim Adventures of Lennox Sebe explores the various projections that Lennox Sebe attempted to produce of himself as founding infrastructural mechanisms for the construction of the vision of the Ciskei. He did this to appeal to international audiences and to catapult the Ciskei to that of a world-class nation.

The work approaches architecture as a tool of projection as can be seen in how Sebe attempted to spatially materialise his projections. Its failures, while still reflecting their intent as projections, haunt the present as they hold it hostage as phantoms that are unable to hold life outside of its unrealised projective intent. Sebe’s phantom infrastructures curated images that embellished the truth of who he was and what the Ciskei really was. His primary framing of his phantom projections was through the phrase ‘AmaCiskei Amahle’, which he coined as an identity-forming projective device for his people. Within that frame, he articulated four characteristics to it, which included:

  1. Authoritative
  2. Academic
  3. God-like
  4. Industrious

The work makes use of surrealism and film as narrative devices and proposes a programmatic cleansing of the Ciskei township of Dimbaza, which retains its haunted phantom infrastructures, as well as the troubled spirits of those that Sebe killed during his rule as president of the Ciskei.

Projection, Phantom, Surrealism, Cleansing, AmaCiskei Amahle, Dimbaza

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