Purity Zinhle Mkhize bares her soul and her body (and a tapestry of other bodies) in a gentle yet emotionally charged performance. Directed by Kyle Lewis, one of South Africa’s most highly acclaimed music video directors, Purity’s performance on her ‘No Secrets’ video reached in and firmly tugged at something inside me. And that’s just the start of it.
From Punk to Purity
When I began exploring this kind-of quirky, kind-of captivating lady I discovered that she had already made her mark in SA music years ago, but on an entirely different level. Purity was fun and funky as vocalist for the South African punk band The Pranks (previously known as Fruits & Veggies) before her work took a different direction and she went solo. Her idea for her first performance after the re-invention was to create something raw and honest that promotes positive body image. The ‘No Secrets’ video was result of this. The video strips her talent bare, slices off any of the redundant noise that comes with punk performances and leaves something honest and yes, pure
The Solo Journey
Clearly a woman in control of herself, her art and her look, Purity is redefining the stereotype associated with her ‘people’. Whether that can be defined as Zulus, South Africans, or simply Africans, Purity suffered through insults from her community who she claims, ‘don’t understand and aren’t really exposed to alternative individualism’. Purity’s outlook has always been based on honesty, and what can be more honest than self-expression through soulful (and soul-baring) art? She believes that her music and her life are an interconnected force and that she is achieving personal growth through listening to what her heart wants – and following its governance. We could all take a leaf out of Purity’s book.
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