The office of Africa Open Institute is at the address of 7 Joubert Street, Stellenbosch, situated on the eastern edge of what was known as ‘Die Vlakte’ (translated as ‘The Open Field’). Die Vlakte was an area where residents and business owners held a diversity of positions with respect to ‘race’, identity and religion. Forced removals in 1964 reserved the whole of Die Vlakte as an area for use by ‘white’ persons, including their residential, religious, educational and business enterprises.
The Gujjatul Islam Masjid (mosque, imaged below) was the only building that retained free access for the persons it had served before 1964. In recognition of the history of the area, and in recognition of the original owners of the home in which the institute is housed, the institute’s office now carries the name of Pieter Okkers House, with a brief history of the Okkers family portrayed at the front porch.
The images in this section acknowledge the potential agency of sound as a force that is able to create flux, flow and connection in relation to embodied landscape. (For written observations that accompany images, please click on the image.)