Love letters to Tofolux and other stories of black love
MADEYOULOOK + Danai Mupotsa + Pamella Dlungwana

In this episode the artist collaborative MADEYOULOOK invites the writers Danai Mupotsa and Pamella Dlungwana to reflect on articulations of black love and their engagement in Corner loving, a past collaborative project on love. Using love letters as a point of departure, the conversations touch on explorations of black interiority, the potentials of tenderness and vulnerability, finding new forms and language to better reflect the complexities of black love, as well as discussing the growing visibility and discourse around love in the years since the initial Corner loving exhibition.

The online exhibition Corner loving: Down Tofolux Avenue by MADEYOULOOK opens simultaneously with the podcast on 2 April and runs until 1 May 2021.

Corner loving is an ongoing project, first exhibited in 2014. The project explores the practice of couples meeting in public (particularly the bustling streets of inner-city spaces) for private intimacy, as well as other shared forms of relation, histories and expressions of working-class black love. The project has always offered an assemblage of research material that collectively makes up a set of musings on historical and contemporary black love, within the spaces of popular, academic and pseudo-scientific realms.
     For this online iteration, Down Tofolux Avenue, the archive expands to encounter Zimbabwean narratives. In addition to a playlist of popular Zimbabwean love songs and archival photographs of couples, it includes drawings of corner loving corners developed as a tongue-in-cheek quasi-scientific study featuring the duo’s scientific notations. The project further comprises texts from historical archives and two specially commissioned texts; all of which look to claim a historic trajectory for the contemporary nature of black love. Finally, MADEYOULOOK discuss the first iteration of the project, as well as personal memories of love, with writers Danai Mupotsa and Pamella Dlungwana in their podcast recording, and speak to the historical context of black love in South Africa during a recently recorded public reading.

MADEYOULOOK is an interdisciplinary artist collaborative between Molemo Moiloa and Nare Mokgotho based in Johannesburg, South Africa. The works of MADEYOULOOK make a claim for everyday black lifehood and relationality as constituting knowledge and having the ability to model ways of practicing and being. These everyday practices have the potential to bring about different perspectives to broader societal issues, enable epistemic shifts and create new possibilities.

Danai Mupotsa is a feminist teacher, researcher and recently published poet. She works at the University of the Witwatersrand as a senior lecturer in African Literature. Her collection of poems feeling and ugly gathers the various statuses and locations she moves across, as daughter, mother, teacher, scholar and writer. She describes the collection as a long love letter to those who are willful.

Pamella Dlungwana is an arts administrator and writer from Durban, South Africa.

01  made-you-look.net
02  impephopress.co.za