Tanzania. Camille Walala’s takeover of an NGO’s headquarters

The audacious patterns of the artist have invaded the venue of Standing Voice, an organization that defends the rights of persons with albinism.

Umoja Training Centre, Camille Walala with Julia Jomaa, Ukerewe Island, Tanzania, 2018

Artist Camille Walala, along with her long-standing collaborator Julia Jomaa, painted the key parts of the Umoja Training Centre (UTC) on Ukerewe Island, on Lake Victoria, Tanzania. The centre brings together the members of the local community, with or without albinism. The main entrance sign, the concrete water tanks serving UTC and the surrounding villages, the new radio room, as well as sections of the new library have been invaded with the artist’s signature bold patterns and audacious colours.

‘Umoja’ means ‘unity’ in Swahili, a principle that guided the international NGO Standing Voice to build its headquarters on the island in 2016. The structure is an inclusive space for members of the community that concretely fights the stigma and the social ostracization. Walala has been invited to foster a sense of unity and positivity for the Ukerewe community through her art. The artist’s takeover coincided with the second edition of the Summer Skills Workshop, a series of workshop given by visiting experts and creatives. These activities are intended to help the community develop skills and pursue income-generating opportunities and pathways to professional development. The effort of Standing Voice is that of claiming a stake in wider African society for persons with albinism.

Umoja Training Centre
Ukerewe Island, Lake Victoria, Tanzania
Camille Walala
Julia Jomaa

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