CLIENT: THE FORGE
SCOPE: CONSULTING, DIRECTING, VIDEO PRODUCTION, EDITING & PHOTOGRAPHY
The Forge is a welcoming, multi-use space located in Braamfontein, Johannesburg. It serves as a hub for progressive culture and collective thinking, encompassing Pan-African, socialist, feminist, and other progressive perspectives. The Forge actively collaborates with a diverse range of left-leaning organizations, including community groups, social movements, and trade unions.
Architecturally designed, The Forge features various facilities such as a meeting room, theatre, gallery, performance area, and an auditorium for talks and discussions. These spaces provide platforms for engaging dialogues and transformative experiences.
The Forge wanted to chronicle the stories of farm workers in Nyarha, Bedford, located in the Eastern Cape. Utilizing Yvonne Phyllis' family as a starting point, their aim was to document the lived experiences and struggles of farm workers. The project delved into how these individuals, who toil on the land, articulate their connection to the land both as farm workers and as residents of the farms.
We arrived on a Thursday evening, and our initial interview took place on a Friday afternoon. Each location demanded a distinct setup, taking into account the time of day and the positioning of the light source.
Over the course of the following four days, we conducted interviews with a maximum of three farm workers per day. During the evenings, we dedicated our time to reviewing the recorded interviews and footage. This process allowed us to identify areas where enhancements could be made and determine which aspects required further exploration through subsequent interviews.
Ultimately, we produced a captivating 39-minute feature documentary that was complemented by stunning photographs showcasing the landscapes and cattle on the farms. The picturesque scenery of the Eastern Cape played a crucial role in painting a vivid portrait of the environment in which we were immersed.
To share our work, the client organized a screening of the documentary, inviting various stakeholders and fellow organizations involved in advocating for the human rights of farm workers. Additionally, they extended invitations to some of the farm workers who had been interviewed, creating an inclusive and impactful event that allowed for meaningful dialogue and engagement.
The client expressed immense satisfaction with the outcomes of the video, finding that it successfully fulfilled their initial objectives. Within the public sphere, the documentary received a positive reception, particularly during the launch event where the target audience had the opportunity to view it for the first time. The documentary was applauded for its direct focus on the personal stories of the farm workers, deviating from the typical research-oriented approach often taken in similar subject matters. Its impact extended both internationally and locally, attracting attention and garnering coverage in various publications.
As a co-producer, Yvonne Phyllis had the opportunity to travel internationally to speak about the project and its subject matter.
“We have, most recently, had the pleasure of working with AndyMkosi on one of our greatest successes as the organization. ANDYMKOSI possesses an important gift, that is, an ability to contribute to a conducive working relationship. I, Yvonne Phyllis, have personally worked very closely with ANDYMKOSI and have particularly admired her ability to balance between leading productions and being consultative, with clear and respectful communication. As ANDYMKOSI client and collaborator at The Forge, we respect and admire her professionalism and dedication. It is an absolute pleasure and honour to work with her.”
Yvonne Phyllis Co- Director at The Forge
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