Today's Big Stories

'My Naam is Februarie' exhibition maps Cape's slave heritage

An iconic exhibition has opened at Iziko Museums' Slave Lodge reflecting on Cape Town's slave history.

My Naam is Februarie: Identities Rooted in Slavery remembers how South Africa's slave trade has left its mark on current generations.

The exhibition is a collaboration between Iziko Museums and advertising agency Geometry Global.

It aims to demystify the story of why many locals carry calendar-based surnames.

Geometry Global's creative director Gavin Wood says he was inspired to raise awareness about slave heritage after realising how uniformed he was.

I don't think the story of slavery in South Africa has been told. There's a lot that hasn't been said or done.

Gavin Wood at Geometry Global

South Africans are laxed when it comes to knowledge of our slave past.

Gavin Wood at Geometry Global

The Slave Calendar highlights the etymology of slave-derived names and identities, from John January to Regina December.

A team of creatives went on a journey to find and profile local residents whose surnames correspond with the months of the year.

Wood says he found many stories of hope while curating the calendar.

He explains that the team had to be very resourceful, but also remain sensitive to the subject of their descendants.

The team chose to profile and interview the oldest living representatives of a given family surname.

He explains that there are nearly 400 Septembers and Februaries, while the surnames June and July are few and far between.

Hear more about the poignant project below:


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