The Art of Healing

Phansi Museum’s first major exhibition of 2018, The Art of Healing, was opened last Friday by Raymond Perrier, the Director of the Denis Hurley Centre. The exhibition consists of beaded artworks, clothes, fertility dolls, and other paraphernalia used (and in many cases, actually made) by izangoma. The pieces on display have been borrowed from collectors, … Read more

Dr Elliot Ndlovu

Not many of us can claim to have met two heads of state and been a guest at the Oscars, let alone someone who at one point, during his journey as a healer, thought he might be losing his mind. But that’s the incredible tale of Dr Elliot Ndlovu! Working as both an inyanga and a … Read more

Using Muti for ‘Protection’

Recently a photo appeared on social media of a car outlined in white chalk with a clay pot placed at one end, and a gourd on the car’s aerial. The story that accompanied the photo said that the driver had broken down, and for fear that his car would be stripped of its tyres by … Read more

Moving With the Times

If I ask you to imagine what an African healer looks like you probably have a very definite image in mind, one of a slightly older rural woman, wearing traditional clothes, and carrying a bag of bones wrapped around her wrist, but the world is changing, and along with it comes a new breed of sangomas – women (and … Read more

Portrait of a Sangoma

We’re always on the look out for interesting topics relating to Zulu culture and heritage, and in our search we recently stumbled upon the most fascinating series of portraits from German photographer, Peter Frank. Simply entitled ‘Sangomas’ the photographs were first exhibited in 2011, but the subject matter is one that Frank is still focusing … Read more

A Sangoma’s Skirt

Living in KwaZulu-Natal it’s not unusual to see sangoma’s walking along the streets dressed in their traditional attire. Wearing skirts, shawls draped over their shoulders, and beads in their hair and criss-crossed across their chests, sangoma’s are fairly easy to recognise. What we don’t always think about though when we spot these women is what their attire means. The amabhayi, … Read more