Anelisa Mangcu is an unbounded creative force whose talent and vision are shaping the South African art scene
Words: Tshiamo Seape
Anelisa Mangcu is a multifaceted woman with a breadth of talent that sets her apart from her contemporaries. Anelisa came to our attention as a blogger, but this moniker doesn’t come close to scratching the surface of what and who she is. All the clues you need to decipher what Anelisa is about are placed right on the surface. She is no mere blogger; she is first and foremost a creative – one who could not dream of being defined by a single occupation.
As a photographer, stylist, and writer she manages to dispel all the myths that hers is a generation of multitaskers with no direction. Anelisa has always kept herself occupied by a number of pursuits, but she does have her favourites – “My first love is fine art and the exploration of every medium under it”, says Anelisa.
Growing up in New Brighton in the Eastern Cape she always stood out. As a child, she would perform in plays and indulge her artistic side at every opportunity. While still at school she fell into the fashion industry when she was mentored by Asanda Sisani (The then fashion editor of Drum Magazine, and now Elle). The experience broadened her sense of style and gave her a comprehensive understanding of the inner workings of the fashion industry.
When she moved to Cape Town to pursue her degree her talents only continued to blossom. At the tender age of 19, she had her first solo photographic exhibition at the Rocco Studio Gallery. Hot off the heels of this success, she went on to co-curate a Women’s Month Exhibition at the Strand Tower Hotel with Yang Zhao; validating her as an experienced artist and curator.
From there it was only a matter of time before she took the reigns of her own destiny and became the creative entrepreneur that she is today. Anelisa’s accomplishments are vast: She has collaborated with top brands like G-Star and Clinique and her fashion friends, Aisha Baker-Parnell and Minnie Dlamini, are household names.
Bursting with potential from the very beginning Anelisa Mangcu has never failed to live up to expectations. We can only imagine what boundaries she is destined to push.