Afrika Eye Film Festival was founded in 2005 by Simon Bright and Ingrid Sinclair, both of whom began their careers in Zimbabwe.
Lord Paul Boateng
Our patron Lord Paul Yaw Boateng became the UK’s first black cabinet minister in 2002, as Chief Secretary of the Treasury. Lord Boateng had served as the British High Commissioner to South Africa (2005 – 2009). A civil rights lawyer and Methodist lay preacher, Paul was raised to the peerage as Baron Boateng, of Akyem in the Republic of Ghana and of Wembley in the London Borough of Brent in 2010.
Ingrid Sinclair and Simon Bright
Producer Simon Bright and director Ingrid Sinclair lived and worked in Harare, Zimbabwe to 2003, where they founded Zimmedia Film and Video production company and were founder members of the Southern African Film Festival. Between them they have made a range of films that tell stories of southern African popular culture, politics, social issues and history , such as Flame, Tides of Gold, From the Shade into the Sun, and Mbira Music: Spirit of the People.
They have often screened their work at FESPACO (Festival Panafricain du Cinéma et de la Télévision de Ouagadougou) in Burkina Faso. In 2011 Afrika Eye exhibited the European premiere of Simon’s new major documentary, Robert Mugabe… what happened?, which was nominated for best documentary at the South African Film and Television awards.
Ingrid has toured film and arts festivals in Europe. In 2012 she visited to Thessaloniki and Creteil, with festival staff visiting Cannes, Berlin, and Rotterdam.
Forward Maisokwadzo: Chair
Forward Maisokwadzo is, among other things, a journalist and researcher from Zimbabwe. Currently based in Bristol, he is deeply involved with community activities. Forward works part-time as a development worker for both Bristol – City of Sanctuary and the Southern Africa Resources Centre, which administers the twinning link between Bristol and Beira, Mozambique. Forward also works as a research consultant for the Bristol Multi-Faith Forum, who are currently carrying out a faith audit in Bristol.
Forward is chairman of the Bristol Zimbabwe Association, a community group that aims to awareness about the state of affairs in Zimbabwe, preserving and promoting Zimbabwean culture, and providing support for Zimbabweans both in the UK and in their home country. Forward has helped to provide a stronger link with the African Voices Forum, of which the Bristol Zimbabwe Association is a registered member.
Louise Lynas is production manager and company director of Firstborn Creatives, who work with young people, educational institutions, community organisations and broadcasters to produce creative and challenging media projects. She has long had an interest in the arts, with master’s degrees in both Fine Art and Art Therapy and teaching experience as a visiting lecturer at various American institutions. In recent years she has worked extensively in event management, helping organise well-known festivals and cultural events, including WOMAD, the Bristol St. Paul’s Carnival, Shambhala Festival, and Tribe of Doris. She is currently an integral member of the team at The Spark, a region-wide magazine based in Bristol looking at life alternatives. Louise lives in Montpelier, in the heart of Bristol, and is very much part of her local community
Asif Khan: CIC Secretary
Asif Khan possesses many years’ experience in planning and marketing the arts. His career spans many cultural forms and has taken him into areas of work that have included local, regional, national and global programmes. Asif is a former chair of Bristol Racial Equality Council and supports the inclusion and development of arts practitioners and audiences from across the UK’s diverse communities.
Asif’s professional career roles have included:
- Senior National Policy Adviser at Museums, Libraries and Archives Council
- Strategic Development and Business Planning consultant at Barbados National Arts Gallery Committee
- Lead Cultural Officer for Bristol’s European Year of Intercultural Dialogue
- Festival Manager for the Yardstick Black literature festival
- Press and PR Officer at Colston Hall
Asif is a Bristol Happiness Champion – one of 50 people selected in 2013 as an inspiration to others in the city.
Rebecca N K Gibbs, Born in the mid 70′s in Malawi, South East Africa to Ghanaian and British parents.
Rebecca continues to regard Bristol as her home and base, despite living and working elsewhere nationally and internationally, at times.
From the young age of six Rebecca has been involved in the performance arts scene in Bristol. This involvement has developed to include Project and Events Management and working as an Artist in various disciplines. Her endeavours are supported by a BA honours degree in ‘Art in a Community Context with Drama and Theatre Studies’, her registered Project Management Practioner status and more recently as she continues in her acquisition of a Masters in ‘Art, Media and Design by Project’.
As a multi faceted practioner Rebecca has also worked in the corporate sector in Management and IT Consultancy designing and delivering POS systems and in the Design and Build of websites.
Rebecca is a published Author, Publisher, Facilitator and Broadcaster. Over time Rebecca has also delivered graphic design solutions for publications and been engaged to take the lead roles of Choreographer or Director for various productions. In 2012 she facilitated the production of show reels for both The Bristol Cathedral Choir and The Bristol Metropolitan Orchestra.
In her Voluntary commitments Rebecca has recently, January 2013, retired from the position of Chair of St Pauls Afrikan Caribbean Carnival ltd, having been a member of the board for four years. During her term of office she lead the charity to successfully secure ACE and BCC funding to 2015, increase its revenue streams and actively strengthen the organisation from a structural perspective. She continues to support the organisation as a volunteer and member. Rebecca is also on the committee of the West Bristol Arts Trail and has been a Trustee of a grant making trust for over 10 years.
Rebecca’s African, British heritage is central to her developing, personal practice, she is therefore delighted to have been invited to be a Director Of Afrika Eye Film Festival CIC.