Artist Alliance 2023 Graduates
Supplied by the V&A Waterfront's Artist Alliance programme

V&A Waterfront celebrates Artist Alliance Graduates and Cape Town’s Creative Future

The V&A’s Artist Alliance just threw a bash to celebrate the latest group of young creatives to finish their program. This bunch now knows how to turn their art into a business, and they got recognized with a graduation ceremony at Zeitz MOCAA.

Only six students made the cut this time, each from different creative backgrounds like music, art, animation, and design. They were paired up with mentors like Russel Abrahams, Kay Faith and Nadia Darries who showed them the ropes and gave them some life advice along the way.

Sipho Ngqayimbana, a music maker, and Carmen Jacobs, a self-taught artist, found their groove in the program. They say it changed the game for them, helping them set up their own businesses with the help of their mentors.


Lehlohonolo Ndlovu, a camera whiz, and Anelissa Nkanyuza, an animation and illustration artist, say they learned how important support networks are for success. Nkanyuza especially loved how it helped her deal with the stereotypes in the animation world.

Says Lehlohonolo, “I could not have prepared for the kind of growth I experienced as an artist and an individual. Now, I understand it’s not just about creating work and posting on Instagram, it’s also about understanding the cultural landscape, finding your own voice and managing your own wellbeing.” 

Dumisane Mparutsa and Larissa Mwanyama both found their stride too, overcoming doubts and challenges in their paths. Mwanyama, an entrepreneur with a passion for curatorship, creative arts, and leadership, says the programme helped her transform these obstacles into opportunities by forging her own path as a business owner.

Mbhali Manzini, a graduate from the first Artist Alliance co-hort and currently ambassador for the programme, says the program isn’t just about two months of fun and games—it’s about learning the ropes of different creative gigs like design, music and video and making the best of the unique opportunities the V&A Waterfront provides. 

Tinyiko Mageza, Marketing Executive at V&A Waterfront, says the program is all about backing the next generation of artists. Says Mageza, “Artist Alliance serves to showcase the existing creativity of young talent offering space for them to expand their knowledge, better navigate the business landscape and inspire others who seek to build their creative careers. What gives us even more joy is seeing their legacy visible in our neighbourhood.”