Hello Mr. Handley and class – Amazing Africa post

Here is a link to their original post from Mr. Handley...


Hello Mr. Handley and class,

I’m sorry it has taken me a week to comment on this post. It has been a little busy for me at the moment.




Which piece of art do you like the best?  Why?

Both pieces of art have interesting features. In a time before cameras, artists would often capture scenes through painting and drawings. The over 200 year old painting looks like others I have seen from the era, including early paintings of Australia.

The second looks a more modern piece of art using a blend of traditional and modern designs.

Depending on why I wanted them, each would be my favourite. If I were to decide on vibrant colour and design, the giraffe painting would be the one. For value and historical interest, I would choose the older painting.


How do you think each piece of art was made?  How can you tell?

The older painting looks as though it might  have been a finely detailed watercolour.

The giraffe painting looks more like modern acrylic paint but it’s hard to tell without seeing the original.


Is there anything that is the same about the two pieces of art?

Both paintings show animals in their natural habitat.


What do you feel when you look at each of the images?

The older makes me feel in touch with a much earlier Africa where animals weren’t restrained by parks and the spread of people was restricted more the village shown in the painting. Its style is closer to photographic so a viewer can have a sense of the land and animals.

The newer make me feel brighter because of its more vivid colour and design.


What can you see in each image? Look closely (you can click on them to make them bigger)- can you see anything that you think others might not have spotted?

The older painting shows a village or settlement where their cattle roam and people go about their daily routine.

The more modern painting not only includes the giraffes and trees, the design of birds makes up part of the trees.


Do you think the pieces of art are based on what the artists have seen, or are just from their imagination?

In bother cases, I feel there is a mix of what was seen and what their imagination has shown them. The degree varies. The older relies much more on what was seen than the newer.


Can you name any of the animals in either piece of art?

The older painting includes people, cattle and dogs whereas the newer includes giraffe and birds.


Can you find any other examples of African art that you like?

Africa is a very large continent with many cultures both past and present. Their art included carvings as well metal casting, painting, jewellery design and even body art.

Here is a link to a site selling African art both modern and traditional. It has many images…





Which piece of music do you like the best?  Why?

“Mbube” It sounds much more traditional than the others and sounds as though it includes the unusual licking in speech of the Kalahari bushmen.


How is each piece of music similar/different?

“Diamonds on the Soles of Her Shoes” – Much includes traditional rhythm yet it blends more modern song.

“Rain, Rain Beautiful Rain” – Sung in English yet it still has the feel of traditional African choral music.

“Mbube” – This seems the most traditional piece and therefore my favourite.

“World in Union 95” – The sounds the most modern yet still carries a traditional feel.


What do you like about this music?  Is there anything you don’t like?

There is no doubt the “A cappella” nature of the music and its rhythm is very appealing. Liking many music styles, I must say I hear nothing I dislike.


How is it the same/different from the music you normally listen too?

It’s not different. My iTunes includes examples from African, Aboriginal, North American Native and other traditions as well as many other music forms.


What do the pieces of music make you think of when you listen to them?

I am more lost in the rhythm and sounds than thinking of other things. With each, I do picture my imagination’s images of Africa.


What do you think each piece of music is about?

The titles give us a hint except “Mbube”. From what I have found, it means “lion” in the Zulu language so may be a song of lions hunting or patrolling their territory.


Can you find any other music by this group which you like?

By chance, one of my African albums is by the group. The album is called Liph' Iqiniso. My favourite on the album is the same as the album title. Below is a scan of the album cover...



Thanks for sharing an interesting post. It gave me an excuse to listen to Ladysmith Black Mambazo again.


Teacher, NSW, Australia

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