From Khartoum To The World-9 Sudanese Creatives You Need To Follow in 2023
Sudan's creative scene has been steadily gaining recognition on a global scale, with talented individuals across various creative disciplines making their mark. From music and fashion to visual arts and literature, Sudanese creatives are breaking barriers, challenging norms, and telling unique stories that deserve to be heard. In this article, we highlight nine Sudanese creatives who are making waves and capturing hearts in 2023. Get ready to be inspired and immerse yourself in the rich tapestry of Sudan's vibrant artistic landscape.
Born in West London to Sudanese parents, Rozan is a multi-disciplinary creative who reflects on her British, Arabian, and African ties. Through her effective leadership, she led several impactful projects, events, and celebrity campaigns in the realms of fashion and music. She places a genuine emphasis on social responsibility and empowering communities. With her unique blend of Sudanese, British, Bahraini, and Emirati heritage, Rozan is driven by a fervent mission to shed light on and support the arts and cultural landscapes in underrepresented regions of the world.
Marwan Elhussain, a creative individual from Sudan, currently residing in Dubai, is recognized for his diverse range of artistic pursuits. Initially fueled by a love for portrait and fashion photography, his artistic endeavors expanded to include exploration in video production, graphic design, animation, and various other forms of digital art.
Sammany is a Sudanese artist who was born in Saudi Arabia. Inspired by singers, songwriters, and producers like Pharrell Williams, Timbaland, and Ryan Leslie, Sammany has gained significant recognition for his incredible music compositions dedicated to the people of Sudan. His profound affection for his homeland transcends mere words, showcasing his deep-rooted love and connection to Sudan.
Abdel El Tayeb
Sudanese-French Designer Adel El Tayeb was born in Bordeaux, France, to Sudanese parents, and discovered his interest in fashion through television. During his childhood vacations, he participated in arts and crafts classes, which sparked his passion for handicrafts, painting, and architecture. He pursued a degree in textile design at Olivier de Serres in Paris and furthered his studies in styling and fashion creation at the Ecol Nationale supérieure des arts visuels de la cambre in Brussels. El Tayeb gained experience as an assistant designer at esteemed fashion brands such as Isabel Marant, Balmain shoes, Cédric Charlier, and Maison Margiela's artisanal collection. He also honed his skills in embroidery and lacework at the haute couture house Franck Sorbier and delved into product development at Ann Demeulemeester. Remarkably, even before completing his studies, El Tayeb was recruited by the former creative director of Bottega Veneta, Daniel Lee, demonstrating his exceptional talent and potential.
Hoosh, originally from Sudan but with a dynamic that exists between the Middle East and the United States, has embraced a wide range of cultural influences, which have shaped his unique musical style. Seamlessly blending elements of Hip Hop, R&B, Soul, and acoustic elements, Hoosh crafts cohesive projects that effectively convey his message. His sound encompasses smooth underlying beats complemented by impactful 808s and velvety rhythms.
The 26-year-old singer/songwriter embarked on his musical journey in 2018 with the release of his debut single, "Better Days." Since then, he has unveiled numerous singles that have garnered attention and found their way onto several noteworthy editorial playlists on platforms like Spotify (such as Tantalizers, New Music Friday Ghana, Chill Hits, Afropop & African Heat) and Apple Music (Mood. & #Arabhop). Hoosh aspires to further evolve his music, leaning towards a more melodic and lyrical approach. Having accumulated over seven million streams worldwide, Hoosh's presence in the music scene is rapidly expanding. With his versatility and upbringing rooted in a nomadic lifestyle, the possibilities for his future endeavors are boundless.
Abu’Obayda Mohamed, better known as OXDA is a Sudanese artist. He creates politically-charged, patriotic, and emotive artwork that revolves around Sudan and its struggles, often artistically using the map of Sudan. Since the revolution began in 2018, some of his illustrations have been recognized as emblems of the revolution.
Marwa Zein is an award-winning Sudanese film director, scriptwriter, and producer known for her acclaimed debut film "Khartoum Offside" and several short fiction films including "A Game" and "One Week, Two Days." She was born in Saudi Arabia and has lived in Egypt. Initially, she pursued chemical engineering at Cairo University for three years before switching to studying cinema at the Academy of Arts in Cairo, Egypt, in 2005. In 2009, she graduated with an honorable mention.
Currently, Marwa Zein is studying graduate film in Germany. Her documentary film "Khartoum Offside" received critical acclaim and won several awards. It was awarded Best Documentary at the 15th Africa Movie Academy Awards (AMAA) in 2019 and received the Best First Work award by TV5 Monde at the Carthage International Film Festival (JCC). The film also won the Best Documentary award at FCAT Spain in 2019 and received a Special Mention Award at the Malmo Arab Film Festival in Sweden in the same year. Additionally, "Khartoum Offside" was nominated for Best Arabic Film at the Cairo International Film Festival in 2019. The film had its world premiere at Berlinale Forum 2019 and was officially selected for various prestigious international festivals including Visions Du Reel, CPH:DOX, Hot Docs, Sheffield, JCC, IDFA, and CIFF in 2019.
Before establishing her own production company, ORE Productions, in 2017 in Khartoum, Sudan, Marwa Zein worked as an assistant director for renowned Egyptian directors such as Halah Khalil, Khairi Beshara, Dawoud Abdelsayed, and Shady Fakharany between 2009 and 2015. Additionally, she served as a festival programmer for the Sudan Independent Film Festival from 2014 to 2017.
Hleem Taj Alser
Hleem Taj Alser, a Sudanese rapper, singer, and songwriter. Born in 1994, he grew up in Libya and gained significant fame in 2021. His breakthrough came with the release of "Bella Ciao," and he achieved global recognition when his single "Login," went viral on social media, amassing over 2 million views in just two days. Hleem has become a prominent figure in the Sudanese and Middle Eastern music scenes, establishing himself as one of the most influential Sudanese artists of all time.
Hailing from the Netherlands, Gaidaa is making her mark in the R&B scene, transcending borders all the way from the Netherlands to California. As a Sudanese singer-songwriter, she pours her heart and soul into her music, creating impactful R&B ballads with acoustic elements and vulnerable lyrics. With an impressive 1 million independent streams, Gaidaa, known for her song "Falling Higher," proves that dreams can come true through hard work and unwavering passion.
Gaidaa's journey took a significant turn when her 2017 cover of a Kehlani song caught the attention of producer Full Crate. Together, they collaborated on the song "Storm On A Summers Day," which has garnered over 7 million streams to date. Opting to prioritize her own artistic path, Gaidaa made the conscious decision to leave university and dedicated herself to writing and recording whenever possible.
In 2019, Gaidaa had the honor of performing "Morning Blue" at the COLORS studio. The song sheds light on the political and social climate in Sudan, reflecting her commitment to standing up for justice and what is right. Her advocacy for her people extends beyond her music and permeates all aspects of her life.
Recently, Flaunt had the opportunity to connect with Gaidaa via an Instagram Live session. They delved into various topics, including her upbringing, how she is navigating quarantine, her latest single "Falling Higher," her goals, and much more.
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