Exclusive video of Sure (40HK) painting at this years Back To The City Hip-Hop Festival in Johannesburg.
Video & photographs by Cale Waddacor
The annual Freedom Day hip-hop festival, Back To The City, is around the corner - and it promises to be the biggest one yet! We spoke to Ritual Media Group’s Osmic Menoe, founder of the event and all-round hip-hop maestro…
Tell me about Back To The City festival.
Back To The City is a festival that is aimed at celebrating Freedom Day, using Hip Hop as a form of expression. We are on our 8th year and can only hope to further share the importance of the day with those who will be in attendance.
What can be expected at this years fest?
‘Celebrating 20 Years of Freedom’ is our theme this year. Everything from the Hip Hop Summit to the fun activities at the festival will be centered around this. People can look forward to high value entertainment and bigger outlets for their chosen art form, be it dance, rap or graffiti etc.
Quest, 2013 graffiti competition winners
How does graffiti fit into this event?
It is one of the most important elements of hip-hop, and we always make a point to highlight it. Respected graffiti artists from across the country are invited to participate in the graffiti competition, managed by Two by Two Art Studios, who are street art experts.
What feedback have you received about the graffitied pillars in the past?
The feedback has been greatly positive. A lot of value has been added to the Newtown district, as the graffiti pillars are now one of the biggest tourist attractions in town. Wedding pictures, family portraits, music videos and commercial adverts have used them as a backdrop.
What positive role does graffiti play in Joburg’s inner city?
Newtown specifically, has become a home for graffiti artists, all the street art is sanctioned and appreciated by the masses. High quality works are produced and people are starting to understand that graffiti murals and graffiti vandalism are two different things. City councils are showing support, artists are getting commissioned for their work, tourism is increasing, and long term value is created.
DS, 2012 graffiti competition winners
Osmic Menoe, founder of the festival.
Anything else you’d like to mention about BTTC 2014?
It will be bigger and better. For more information visit http://www.backtothecityfestival.com, follow us on Twitter @backtothecitySA, and “like” our Facebook Page ‘Back To The City Festival’.
The sixth annual “Back to the City” Hip Hop Festival takes place on Freedom Day next week (April 27) at Ritual Stores - corner Bree Street and Henry Nxumalo, Newtown, Johannesburg.
The event runs from the morning til late and features live music, street art, break-dancing, art installation, skateboarding, film, street soccer, street fashion, gaming, speakers and panel discussions.
The annual Back To The City Festival took place a few days ago. Here are some pics of the graffiti pieces that were painted:
Only two weeks until Joburg’s biggest Hip Hop event - The Back To The City Freedom Day Festival. In its 5th year running the event will take place on Freedom Day (27 April 2011) and will feature over 30 MC’s, DJ’s, B-boys, Beatbox and skateboard competitions, and of course the graffiti pillars.
Taking place by Ritual Stores in Newtown (cnr. Bree and Henry Nxumalo) from 9.30am til 11pm. R60 gets you in. RSVP here.