By Jeoffrey Mukubi
BOLI Mootseng, a music and television producer, musician, presenter, creative director, and an all-round contributor to the local arts and culture industry for close to two decades, has evidently contributed immensely to Namibian entertainment.
Confidente recently spoke to him to find out what this veteran creator had to say about the overall state of entertainment in Namibia.
Mootseng said it all started for him when he made the much celebrated and loved hit song titled On a Sunday afternoon.
He added that one of his great motivations were the stories that he told people through the arts.
“Ever since it has been fun broer! Not a lot of people have the opportunity to do what we do as artist.
“People already knew who I was before I started doing music, but when I realised that I could tell more stories through the music, then that’s when I went for it,” Boli said.
Asked how different the entertainment industry was pre independence and what it is now, he said, “It is pretty much the same, in fact, there is no industry, and entertainment in Namibia is just an artistic activity.”
Mootseng said artists just get together and produce music, plays and shows, for the sake of doing something hence an industry had more to do with sustainable jobs and a constant exchange of money.
According to the arts trouper, the artistic activities are needed to form an effective industry union, but artists also need to be lobbyists.
The creation of such a union was proposed in 2016 where the Artist Revolution Trust of Namibia (ART Nam) held a discussion on the possibility of an artists’ union.
He said the union would ultimately represent and protect the rights and interests of the artistic community.
Mootseng emphasized on music as he noted that it was the dominant art discipline in Namibia. He said that after 28 years of Independence, radio stations, which were supposed to be the driving forces for local musicians,were not doing that.
“Artists need to come together and form a union so that their voices can be heard. We need to have a serious industry that focuses primarily on job creation.
“If radio stations really appreciated local music, then artists would not be running to fill jukeboxes and claim money from shebeen owners.
“We do not want money from the government; we want updated policies and frameworks in place in order to get sponsors and corporates to invest into these activities, thus transforming it into an industry,” he said. Other local artist such as up-and-coming dancehall musician Don Kamati and contemporary photographer JuliART Hango also reiterated Mootsengs sentiments.
Hango said she felt like there was not enough space for a contemporary artist like herself, to constantly express her art in Namibia.
She said, “Sometimes I am pressured by life to get a so-called real job, because of how our arts and culture industry is set up, knowing that sometimes the arts do not pay in Namibia.
“There is no industry, there are people making artwork and contributing to creating an industry.”
Hango added that if there was an industry, then artists would make more strides in coming together and collaborating across all art disciplines.
Kamati on the other hand believes that there may be a big change this year.
He said, “Although there is still room for improvement in all arts disciplines, we are heading in the right direction to have a full blown industry soon.
Confidente. Lifting the Lid. Copyright © 2015