Naniqua, meaning “mountain in the mist”, is the KhoiSan name for the Cockscomb mountain near Hankey in the Eastern Cape. This is a spiritually significant place to the KhoiSan people and therefore the project is managed by members of the Gamtkwa tribe.
The KhoiSan people were the original inhabitants of the area who have lived on the land for thousands of years. Their history of resistance to invasion by colonial governments who ultimately claimed their land, mirrors the histories of countless communities in South Africa and across Africa who, in the name of colonialism and apartheid were stripped of their land, culture, and identity.
The KhoiSan people today, like many other indigenous nations, struggle to gain recognition and their communities suffer from unemployment and other social problems. The project provides unemployed woman the opportunity to earn an income by manufacturing contemporary and traditional jewellery linked to their culture.
The aim of the project is not only to teach skills in basic jewellery making but also to re-introduce an art form that is no longer practiced in the Kouga region. It’s part of a process to redress past inequities and to enable them to regain their identity and cultural pride.
The project provides unemployed beneficiaries from the local Khoisan community with an opportunity to manufacture contemporary and indigenous jewellry linked to the Khoisan culture, an art form that is being reintroduced to the Kouga region as part of the Department of Arts & Culture investing in Culture (LLC) program.