Meta, Facebook’s parent company, has given a Kenyan content producer Ksh3 million for work centered on the Nairobi Boda Boda scene.
The firm revealed six finalists for the Future Africa: Telling Stories, Building Worlds initiative on Monday, March 14, including Michelle Angawa, a Kenyan film editor and XR developer. Angawa will be entrusted with generating tragicomedy material reflecting a day in the life of a Nairobian boda boda rider, with a budget of Ksh3.4 million (US$30,000).
The content is intended to examine desire as well as the difficulties of living in Nairobi.The program’s goal, according to the statement, is to identify and invest in Africa’s future generation of Extended Reality (XR) artists.
Aside from financial assistance, the makers will receive mentorship and passes to XR events to help them further their creativity.
“As part of the ‘Future Africa: Telling Stories, Building Worlds’ programme, each creator will be supported with funding of up to $30,000 and also participate in XR-industry events to improve their creativity and drive interest in their projects. They will also access mentorship from Electric South and Imisi3D,” read the statement in part.
Mozambique, South Africa, Nigeria, Mauritius, and Cameroon were among the other five winners in the initiative, which is a cooperation between Meta and Africa No Filter (ANF).They are required to employ music, multimedia installations, video, and sculpture to investigate topics related to spirituality, legacy, the cosmos, imagination, memory, and masculinity in their extended reality projects.
Jessica Hagan, ANF’s Arts and Culture Program Lead, stated that the organization was pleased with the plethora of talent on the African continent.
“It’s reassuring to see the amount of incredible XR talent on the African continent. The creativity and innovation we encountered in the selection process has been very exciting.
“It shows that Africa is also on the pulse of global innovation and tech trends that are redefining how stories are told and experienced. XR content creation is costly, but African creators are not falling behind,” she stated.
Pierre-Christophe Gam of Cameroon, who is working on a hybrid art project combining VR, video, photography, and mixed-media sculpture, and Xabiso Vili of South Africa, whose visual album is a speculative fiction piece exploring reconciliation and healing, were the other winners.
In her work, Nirma Madhoo from Mauritius explores African cultures as technologies, Malik Afegbua from Nigeria is curating a virtual heritage experience of the Kofar-Mata dye pit, a cultural and historical site in Kano, Nigeria, and Lara Sousa from Mozambique, a director and producer, rounded out the top six.