AFRICAN MERMAIDS

Joburg can be really draining for a creative. I found my self in a cycle of overworking and constantly neglecting what I truly stand for as a queen which is bringing our queer community together. 

The concept for the shoot came together when a friend of mine asked me to go on holiday to Qqeberha with her. She booked us in at Singa Lodge 300m away from the beach in Summerstrand and our queer journey began on Saturday the 5th of June at the Qqeberha airport. 

We got to our room a bit early and decided to wait at the beach. We were blessed to have witnessed a sangoma doing a ritual in the ocean and at that point I realised that Qqeberha was not only a beautiful area but also extraordinarily rich in spirituality. Eventually we get to our lodge, and I unpacked and patiently waited for The Queer Cook and his friends to come and fetch the Queer Closet that I was transporting with me. He arrived a few hours later with a gang of cheerful queer folks and allies and we started a small kiki in the bedroom! I was doing my makeup to go out that evening and we started discussing concepts for a collaborative shoot to celebrate Pride month. 

The Monday a few of the team member arrived and everyone met back at our room for makeup and final briefing! We all met at the beach and the rest was history!

The concept of the shoot is African Mermaids. Mermaids are seen as the lurers of sailors that cause destruction and turmoil, yet in some culture they represent life and fertility within the ocean. As the mother of the Huase of Ganoosh I try to help queer souls find themselves and boy did we find ourselves in this shoot. When we got back to the hotel room and viewed the images, we were all super emotional and in awe of what we had created. We never thought a bunch of queers and a camera would end in creating such a strong and conceptual body of art. 

I pray these pictures inspire the next generation of queers to embrace their bodies, minds, and souls to the fullest and to always remember that they are loved and worthy of everything that society takes away from them!

Love 

Baba Ganoosh aka Wassim K Gilbert 

Photographer: @noir.snow (Instagram)

Models: Mbulelo @mbuleloxinana (Instagram and twitter) Yellow face

Model: Baba Ganoosh @babaganoosh__ (Instagram) @baba_ganoosh_ (twitter) Green face

Model: Yolanda Halana @justyolanda (twitter) @yolandahalana (Instagram) Blue face 

Model: Lusi Mahote @3fourthsofpurity (Instagram)

Model: Visisa Jafta @visisa (Instagram and twitter) 

Shoot director: @purplejellybaby_ (Instagram)

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