Former OSJ Student Bheka Awarded Residency in Paris

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Bheka, a former student of the social and artistic mentorship programme Of Soul and Joy (OSJ), has been awarded a residency in Paris. He will be working on a photography project that explores his childhood memories through the intersection of cinema, photography, and personal narrative.

Bheka is a former student of the social and artistic mentorship programme Of Soul and Joy in Thokoza.“Honestly, I still can’t believe it because there were a lot of people who applied for the very same opportunity. I couldn’t believe it… the day I believe it is the day I actually get to Paris ,” Bheka told“It feels unreal, it hasn’t clicked that much because I’m always discovering new places, going to new spaces I’ve seen on the internet,” he said.

Bheka is a former student of the social and artistic mentorship programme Of Soul and Joy in Thokoza.The programme is dedicated to empowering young South Africans through creativity. It provided Bheka a pathway to studying photography which has led to him producing award-winning work recognised across several global photography platforms.

In partnership with 135 French and international organisations, the Cité’s two complementary sites welcome more than 300 artists from a wide range of disciplines for residencies lasting up to one year. The photographer from Ekurhuleni said he took a stroll on his first day in the city and came across a film crew shooting what he was told was an American movie.

Bheka said his first day of the residency didn’t involve much work. “They introduced me to staff here, and they showed me around. The traffic is very crazy here, I’m in the centre of Paris,” said the photographer.

Source: Education Headlines (

Bheka OSJ Residency Paris Photography Childhood Memories Cinema Personal Narrative


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