Community Arts Legacy Archive

cala splash

A digital archive documenting community arts organisations from the anti-apartheid era along with individual artists associated with that movement.

This initiative combines two existing heritage projects (ENHANCING VISIBILITY and PEOPLES CULTURE).
Community Arts Legacy Archive also includes the production of a book on Lionel Davis.

Extract from the proposal


January 2017- February 2018.

New content will be added to individual archives and new archives will be created as and when material and capacity dictates.


To enhance the cultural capital of provinces by promoting awareness and appreciation of the contribution of local artists and organisations to social and political change.

To create an accessible digital archive of community arts organisations from the anti-apartheid era, and artists associated with these centres.

To commemorate the art of Lionel Davis, an emblem of the community arts movement and a living archive, on the occasion of his 80th birthday.

Results (measurable)

Creation of accessible online archives of at least five community arts organisations from identified provinces (KwaZulu Natal, Eastern Cape, Limpopo).

Online publication of archival records from at least 10 artists from identified provinces (Limpopo, kwaZulu Natal, Eastern Cape)

Online publication of transcripts of three roundtable discussions (one per province)

Online publication of transcripts of interviews (at least three per province)

Online publication of 3 commissioned essays (one per province)

Print publication of book on Lionel Davis, with 10-15 essays, colour illustrations (approx. 80) (print run 1000-1,500,

Distribution of at least 500 copies of Lionel Davis book to schools and inter/national libraries, balance for distribution/sales by District Six Museum and ASAI.


Informal roundtable discussions are being convened in three provinces for purposes of generating content about community organisations.

KwaZulu-Natal – A roundtable discussion took place in Durban on 25 March 2017, attended by Paul Sibisi, Thami Jali, Sfiso Ka-Mkame and Zamani Makhanya. Audio files, transcripts and video clips to be uploaded shortly.
Eastern Cape – plans are underway for a roundtable discussion in May 2017.
Limpopo – a roundtable discussion is provisionally planned for July 2017.


Culture & Working Life Project
Natal Culture Congress
VhaVhenda Art Foundation


Paul Sibisi
Sfiso ka Mkame
Thami Jali
Zamani Makhanya

Eastern Cape
Michael Barry
Mxolisi “Dolla” Sapeta

Avashoni Mainganye

The NLC relies on funds from the proceeds of the National Lottery. The Lotteries Act guides the way in which NLC funding may be allocated. The intention of NLC funding is to make a difference to the lives of all South Africans, especially those more vulnerable and to improve the sustainability of the beneficiary organisations. Available funds are distributed to registered and qualifying non-profit organisations in the fields of charities; arts, culture and national heritage; and sport and recreation. By placing its emphasis on areas of greatest need and potential, the NLC contributes to South Africa’s development.