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Imvelaphi yeti Nkondlo

Imvelaphi yeti Nkondlo (Origins of Poems) is another part of the IMVELAPHI collaboration series. This part involves the artistry of words and explores the marriage of words and images. We team up with Flex of He & I; a poet MC that infuses poetry with live music telling stories that only Africans can tell. Poetry is an old art form that has been celebrated in many ways and on different platforms. In ancient Seswati, poets are referred to as Timbongi and were tasked with the significant role of introducing Kings and Queens in different villages. We resonate or identity with this in our family’s praises (Tinanatelo) and clan names.

We call poets Timbongi (in siSwati), when poet starts reciting what they feel we broke into song(s).


Lefa Biya age 29 Visual Artist from Pretoria. Growing up visuals where the source of information from tv to printed content I didn't read most but it inspired me. With this project it more us creating art which is inclusive of our IMVELAPHI (Origins), which has more to do with our cultures and learning a few words in the process of creating beautiful work like how our ancestors did. Graphic design became a tool where one learnt to communicate diverse messages with it.


Ones culture can't always be learnt through doing but visually a strong message can be used to inform those who have interests in learning and knowing more.

This project is to reach out to the youth of our country and help bring the cultural values to their rightful standards. For one to understand is through learning. Feeding the knowledge of our origins to those who come after us helps one bring unity and love into ones cultural values to another person perspective, that way respect and honor towards culture may be learned and understood better

Misebenti le sikhutsatile (Work that inspired us)

This project was inspired by how we communicate and how art links all together. I grew up a kid speaking Tswana, Tsonga and siSwati but the more I spoke English it became harder to speak Tsonga, siSwati and Tswana. So this project its more in the lines of connecting through art, preserving and educating our languages. We looking forward to creative conversations on culture, the art and our origin (imvelaphi)