Kenyan Film Extended Reality (XR) creator, Michelle Angawa is among six finalists of the Future Africa: Telling Stories, Building Worlds’ program by Facebook and Non-profit organization, Africa No Filter. Winners of the programme focused on harnessing and investing in the next generation of XR creators in Africa were selected from Kenya, Mozambique, South Africa, Nigeria, Mauritius and Cameroon.
Each creative will receive up to Sh3.4 million in financing as part of the ‘Future Africa: Telling Stories, Building Worlds’ program, as well as opportunities to attend XR-industry events to develop their creativity and drive interest in their projects. Electric South and Imisi3D will also provide mentorship.
In their extended realities projects, the winners will incorporate creative uses of music, multimedia installations, films, and sculpture to explore projects around spirituality, heritage, the cosmos, imagination and memory, and masculinity – all with a focus on telling compelling African stories that are contemporary, narrative-shifting, and immersive.
Angawa’s creation is a tragicomedy depicting a day in the life of a Nairobian boda boda rider, exploring desire and the complexity of Nairobian existence.
Other winners include; Pierre-Christophe Gam from Cameroon, Xabiso Vili from South Africa, Nirma Madhoo from Mauritius, Malik Afegbua from Nigeria and Lara Sousa from Mozambique.
“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.” Jessica Hagan, Arts and Culture Program Lead at ANF, said.
Sherry Dzinoreva, Meta’s Public Policy Programs Director, Africa, Middle East, and Turkey, said: “This specially curated program is an opportunity to support African storytellers who are leveraging the power of the next evolution of social technology, whilst also shining a spotlight on the amazing, creative, and diverse talent pool we have here on the continent . We understand the power of Extended Reality and how it can be used to tell stories that shift narratives about and within the continent – and we’re excited to see these visions come to life.”