Being She x Liziwe

Liziwe Kwanini also know as Mamthug. IG: @mamthug

Photography credit: Ben Moyo.


Growing up I never thought one of my greatest achievement would be the sole fact that i am Black, Woman and still alive. It’s still shocks me how well we carry this.

Women of color are constantly at the war front of racism, patriarchy and downright lack of consideration by the rest of the human race.

The scene from Shonda Rhimes’s Scandal where Rowan Pope (Morton) delivers the “you have to be twice as good as them to get half of what they have” monologue illustrates the pressure we prevail on a daily. Despite the cards the universe has dealt us I have witnessed the women my bloodline raise their middle fingers to the man-made boundaries. I’ve seen them fall apart for the first forth time and gather themselves at five. History had already gossiped us to extinction but here we are:

still Magic. Unbothered. Unshook.

I am a loud and unapologetic force of light. My mannerism, very simple and deliberate. I enjoy collecting the company of likeminded individuals. My priced possession is my laugh, how it wears itself around eavesdropping lobes like jewels, is always a sight.

As teenager I struggled with the mechanics of confidence

The hurdles of puberty and active bully were my greatest down. It’s through constant conversation with myself, poetry (yes, poetry changed my life) and a thousand small acts self-love that have helped is sustenance of faith in myself and my abilities.

I was raised in a small pocket of Soweto in house mouth filled with clan names and generational spiritual investments. As the youngest member of the family everyone took turns to weave their belief in the power of prayer, song and visual art.

It comes with no surprise, despite my profession in the financial service industry that I’ve ended up being woven into creative sphere. You can almost always find me neatly packed in a jazz bar, cushioned at a poetry showcase or scattered on the floors of Joburg gallery circuit. I am Storyteller that explores various themes and ideologies such as sexuality, intimacy, grief and death through the use of fashion, styling and imagery. My Instagram platform has been curated to visually represent my personal growth as an artist.

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