art, design

body of work: dear ribane

Graeme Wyllie

Joburg-based conceptual performance artists and production company Dear Ribane blends music, dance and graphic design to create unique experiences. The creative collective – Manthe Ribane, Tebogo Ribane and Kokona Ribane – dissect their work and influences, part for part. 


Our heads are shields that protect us, and the source of our central creative intelligence. They also connect us, transferring self-belief between all of us in the collective. And the way our hair keeps growing endlessly becomes sculpture, a volume of style that contains our viewpoints.


Supplying a connection to the ‘source’ that improves our power means that our noses supply energy. Inhaling creates the deep relaxation we need and gives us time to ‘exhale’ the lessons we have learnt from the evolutionary psychologists who inform our work and keep us on track.


We use our mouths to express our philosophy of non-resistance, which we believe is the key to the greatest power in the universe. Through speaking, we free our creative spirits from their forms, allowing us to create absolute reality of form, and create actual verbal imagery.


We hold the power of imagination in our hands. The magic of making has created everything we wear, eat and take shelter in.


Dear Ribane’s eyes can conceive and believe, forcing us to achieve. Just as a muscle grows stronger and stronger with regular exercise, so will our eyes when used imaginatively. They grow bigger and better, receiving information from the world, which has articulated itself in different forms and dimensions.


Moving forward – not backwards – for our responsibilities within the collaboration in making our collective dreams a reality, our legs give us the ability to take a leap of faith to better our vision.


Our feet give us the ability to balance all forms of execution, so as to counteract a diminished sense of self worth. Being able to withstand all our body weight is a very intelligent thing for our feet to do. And truly feeling our feet is a utilitarian step towards changing our world and how we move within it.