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Felix Tasimba Madziwanyika

On Friday the 3rd of December lecturers and students gathered to witness an African fashion show in the CIU Faculty of Fine Arts. The ice was broken by a series of speeches from the high end officials of the institute. The Acting Dean of the Faculty of Fine Arts, Prof. Dr. Nezih Ayıran, was instrumental in motivating the students as he spoke about his own experience on the road to become a designer. He mentioned a remarkable statement that was made by his first lecturer that triggered his interest in the subject. Assist. Prof. Dr. Cemil Atakara followed suit with a talk quoting the famous words by Le Corbusier: “a building is a machine that we live in.’’

When I took to time to analyse the various speakers that graced us with their words I realise how versatile one can be as a designer. From the inspiring words that motivate an architect right down to the historical lesson of veteran artists, the function lingered though with a touch of education. Humour was not ignored and occasionally roars of laughter were heard in the audience.

Jubril Atanda and his co-host seemed to be the centrepiece as they ushered on and off the professors that wanted to impart knowledge. They also took time to commemorate the achievements of honour and high honour pupils. These were privileged to shake the hands of the professors and get a picture taken for memories sake.

Next came the long-awaited fashion show. Business was first, then pleasure was allowed. Music was played that had a hint of ‘I am African’. Ladies and gentleman from different nationalities and ethnic groups began to approach the stage one by one. They showed off their traditional dresses and some went further to demonstrate cultural greetings. This in some way increased the liveliness of the people as they cheered on their associates with enthusiasm.

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At the end of it all they bowed their heads and concluded the function by a dance better known as the 1-2 Step. Zambia, Zimbabwe, South Africa, Botswana, Nigeria, Morocco were all represented. I remembered the words of George McGovern: The highest patriotism is not a blind acceptance of official policy, but a love of one’s country deep enough to call her to a higher plain.

The students also made an effort to hand up their best works in the info centre. It currently looks like an exhibition area as many innovative building plans have found their way there. The space is also occupied with working models and colourful pictures.