Created to recognise youth culture, lifestyle and music in Africa, the MTV Africa Music Awards (MAMA) are set to inspire young Africans around the world. All eyes will be on South Africa on the 7th of June, as the MAMAs, supported by Absolut Vodka and SA Tourism, will be hosted not far from Durban's Golden Mile at the International Convention Centre (ICC). Yet one award in particular at this year's awards will be celebrating the power of young individuals who transform the image of Africa through their creativity and vision – the Absolut Transform Today Award.
The award, which forms part of Absolut's global Transform Today campaign, will be bestowed on an artist who dares to invent and innovate, who brings social experiences to life and who is ultimately not afraid to break rules and cross boundaries for creative expression in order to bring about positive attention to the African continent. The nominees are:
Clarence Peters (Nigeria), one of the youngest and most talented filmmakers in Nigeria, known for directing top quality music videos, documentaries, TV commercials, short films, and TV features with his work stretching across many genres and art forms. Clarence is the founder and CEO of CAPital Dream Pictures, as well as CAPital Hill Records, and has been nominated for an array of awards for his work.
Anisa Mpungwe (Tanzania / South Africa), a Tanzanian-born fashion designer who knows no limits if her designer fashion range Loin Cloth is anything to go by. Anisa opened her first flagship store in Johannesburg in 2012, at the age of 28, and is known for her fashion-forward, structured designs, bold prints and colour. She recently worked on a range for Mr Price, giving more women access to the elegance and comfort she's synonymous with, and her exceptional designs have been shown at major events such as SA Fashion Week and Stockholm Fashion Week.
Rasty (South Africa), is an acclaimed Graffiti artist. From his fascination with cartoons and comics, Rasty was naturally drawn to graffiti art, which he sees as a great tool for self-expression. He was first exposed to graffiti in 1999 and now specialises in photo-realistic graffiti style. Rasty has live painted temporary walls at events and is part of a graffiti crew, which has worked on a range of diverse and exciting projects.
Leti Arts (Ghana/Kenya) is introducing the world to African superheroes using interactive digital comics and mobile gaming through their passion for gaming. Through their vision that there is more to gaming than matching corresponding tiles and attacking opponents, Lati Arts believe that gaming is not just about fun but also about bringing Africa's rich mythology to life and they have been nominated for a number of awards to affirm their craft.
"Each generation there are a handful of artists who leave a transformative mark, and the MTV Africa Music Awards most certainly celebrates these artists, making it the perfect platform for the Absolut Transform Today Award. We are excited to celebrate these remarkable artists and nominees through this initiative, which showcases our ongoing involvement in contemporary culture through creative collaboration," commented Conor McQuaid, Managing Director of Pernod Ricard South Africa.
MAMA 2014 will, for the first time ever, premiere live across Africa on MTV Base (DStv Channel 322) and MTV (DStv Channel 130) at 21:00 CAT, during which time the winner of the 'Transform Today' award sponsored by Absolut will be revealed.
Stand-up comic, film and television sensation Marlon Wayans will host the awards, while the glittering line-up of performers includes a heady mix of African and international talent including Trey Songz, Miguel, French Montana, Davido, Flavour, Tiwa Savage, Mafikizolo, Uhuru, Oskido, Professor and many others.
For more information on the Transform Today award, the nominated artists and their work, and to cast your vote please visit: www.absolutmtv.co.za/