We caught up with the man behind Marley Bloo, Pins & Roses, W.A.R, Bloo Cheeze an all-round art lover. Tshepo Mothapo aka “TPS”, TPS is Limpopo born creative entrepreneur, his love for art goes back to his primary days. We had a chance to speak to him about his love for art, relationship with the artist Marley Bloo, the work they have been putting in together and his entrepreneurial love.
“My name is Tshepo “TPS” Mothapo and I am an all-round entrepreneur, music/events manager and fashion sales man. Founder of Young Mzansi, a company that houses most of my work, including Youbuntu (online fashion store). I Helped Marley start up Bloo Cheeze, an all arts agency”. He also co-founded Pins & Poses. A company that hosts fashion show and events.
He is currently Marley Bloo’s manager, we found out from him what is the relationship like between the two.” I basically handle all her administration and we are very good friends, we basically have become family to each other”.
(PICTURE: instagram @Marley_Bloo)
TPS spenta lot of his time in Pretoria, before moving to Joburg early this year, we chatted to him about the different cultures within these two cities.
“The culture in Pretoria is mostly very organic. People there just love art, and for the most are creators themselves, they do not however know how to monetize their art and ultimately there is a gap between the artists and the consumers. This is a challenge Marley & I are currently working on”
With comparison to that of Johannesburg this what he had to say about it? “I moved to Joburg because here you can monetize anything, there are more support structures for entrepreneurs here in my opinion, also I love the culture”.
Having spent a lot of time in Pretoria, he is very familiar with the culture and the unearthed gems of the capital city, we found out from him who are those gems that we need to look out for? “There are so many in terms of talent. Reason, a fashion designer. Prince (Podi) and Thabiso Thabethe of the band, TOES, both musician. Thabiso is also a dope visual artist. Marley Bloo obviously, not for long though”.He also echoed to us of the coolest places where cap city creative hang, these are the places according to him we need to check out when in the Capital city. Tshwane Arts Hub and TUT arts campus. “There’s not enough sustainable ones you know”.
Still on Pretoria and its youth culture, we asked the homie how influential is the street wear fashion in the cap city. “It’s easy to say Pretoria is the home of street wear, with Bambhata (Petrol or Milk), AMA KIP KIP, Galxboy all being from there. I feel like they have become the culture of SA street wear”.
Speaking of street wear, we asked TPS of his favorite street wear brands at the moment, he echoed African Swiss and Embedded.
Back to the future, TPS is a creative entrepreneur, and we got into the mix to talk about his initiative called W.A.R with the talented artist Marley bloo. “W.A.R translates to WeAreRebels is a Marley Bloo concept. A concept for a 5 dimensional art exhibition, one you can taste, touch, see, hear and smell. We held a pilot for the exhibition and from that it became a movement, it also has a collective band, and has had a spin of events where one or two of the senses were catered for. The concept itself is still being developed and refined to this day, the final product will be easy on the eye, but complex to pull off”.
As Marley bloo’s manager, they were involved in the SA indie music conference, which saw them jetting off to Spain, we got to know more the conferences and the experiences. “Well like many other opportunities, we applied for it on the IMEXSA website and we were selected to showcase. We met many important people there, and many talented artists from all over the country. The showcase itself was a competition and we won a spot to showcase at Primavera Sound Festival, Spain. That itself was an out of this world experience and we hope to get back”.
It is safe to say that the boy is pushing and his hard work is showing, he told us about the mission and vision of W.A.R. The main mission and vision of W.A.R is to cut out all stereotypes period. Nothing more and nothing less. They chose to do it through art.
To close of the conversation with the homie, we asked him to give the young lads out there who want to be in the same space as him. “WORK HARD, talent is not enough. I have met a lot of talented people who are not making it cause their lazy, and are not skilled in starting and creating a sustainable business. Work on your management skills or get a manager/agency. Know your rights as a creative, stay independent, find creative and innovate ways to monetize your craft. Collaborate, Collaborate, Collaborate! It gives you access to new markets, and you gain a lot of experience. Travel, it will open your mind to new ideas, perspectives and ultimately new opportunities”.
To get in touch with the homie and his work, find him on these social.
Instagram / Twitter and Facebook @Youbuntu_sa, @Marley_Bloo & Mr_Mzansi