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Grand-Pa’s S’phila Sonke campaign gives strength to SA communities through the power of art • it's a Sher thing

Grand-Pa’s S’phila Sonke campaign gives strength to SA communities through the power of art

Together with a family of talented local artists, painkiller brand Grand-Pa has taken to the streets to empower South African communities with ten beautifully crafted wall murals. With the aim of inspiring communities to consider what “S’phila Sonke” means to them.

S’Phila Sonke

As a quintessentially African philosophy, and the official title of Grand-Pa’s latest campaign. S’phila Sonke means “I am because we are” in Zulu, and encompasses the very heart of Ubuntu. Kanyisa Qhutywa Grand-Pa brand manager says, “As we live in times where our health has become a priority, it has never been a better time to remind ourselves that we can only truly help our communities if we are well ourselves.”

The brothers

The murals have been crafted by brothers in art Kabelo Gift Nyamate, Sifiso Nyamate, and Sibusiso Nyamate. And all depict various ways in which people can inspire, empower and invigorate their communities. Like studying, going to school, seeing the doctor, playing an instrument, starting a business, and coming together for a meal.

Each scene also ensures that every person depicted in the mural is wearing a mask. As Kanyisa says fighting the spread of COVID-19 is the foundation of community strength for the indefinite future. “These 10 murals are the perfect vehicle to not only brighten up our communities but to remind us who we are as Africans and how we can find strength from each other. But the best part is that it doesn’t stop at the murals,” says Thoko Zungu, Marketing Manager.

Their story

In an effort to inspire communities further. the Grand-Pa ‘S’phila Sonke’ campaign will provide cash prizes to consumers through competitions whereby South Africans can describe what ‘S’phila Sonke’ means to them. “The spirit of our communities is something that drives us forward. Through these kinds of initiatives and competition, we are proud to be able to give back in any way we can,” says Kanyisa. “Why Grand-Pa? Because when you are well, you can continue to make your community well. S’phila Sonke is the message we want to build into our communities.” With that in mind, the inspiration begins with the art. Meet the family of artists that have brought S’phila Sonke to life.

Kabelo Gift Nyamate considers himself among the first wall mural airbrush artists from Soweto. He has perfected the skill over time. Later he went to the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) where he spent more than 3 years doing the wall murals. After DRC he worked in Mozambique doing murals. “I am mostly shaped by my community since most of my artwork is about helping the township express itself.”

With over a decade of experience with wall murals. Kabelo turned this passion into a family business having trained his family members as well. This includes the two other S’phila Sonke mural artists, Sifiso and Sibusiso. Sifiso says, “I learned under Kabelo and then started doing art while I was a young boy. I have extensively worked under Silver sieves and High Rise Up wall murals.”

Sibusiso says, “I was recruited by my uncle Kabelo to start working on the wall murals. I moved to work for Sepajo where I perfected my skill as an artist.” All three are proud to bring the S’phila Sonke murals to life. And believe that any campaign that brings a message of unity to South African communities is worth being passionate about.

Tamryn Sher
tamrynsher@gmail.com
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