Muhammad Dawjee


Muhammad Dawjee is an artist working with sound, space and music, from racially designated indian* apartheid group- area, Laudium, Pretoria. As a 90s (post-)apartheid rainbow child, he’s always been grappling with the nuanced identities of South African brown people(s) and uses music, sound and space to unearth histories of colonial subjugation, migration and pursuits of liberation. He was selected for several Standard Bank National Schools’ Big Bands in his youth and has worked with Dr Abdullah Ibrahim, Andile Yenana, Herbie Tsoaeli and Mandla Mlangeni. Since moving to Johannesburg in 2015, he has cofounded the indo-jazz trio Kinsmen, served as a member of the pan-Afrikan septet iPhupho L’ka Biko and toured internationally with the experimental performance-art ensemble The Brother Moves On (TBMO). In 2022, he co-produced Them Who Feeds You Owns You Café – a week-long installation and takeover of an abandoned restaurant space in Melville Johannesburg, comprising sound artists and composers in residency and an incidental jazz festival along 7th Street. Muhammad routinely performs his compositions with an ensemble called Dawjee Trio in collaboration with Amaeshi Ikechi (upright bass) and Siphiwe Shiburi (drum kit). In 2022, he was selected as a Onebeat Virtual 3 fellow, wherein he collaborated with artists from across the globe to investigate the possibilities of sound, the human experience and the spatial-sonic aspects of virtual reality. In 2023, Muhammad was selected as an artist in residence at the Centre For Humanities Research (University of the Western Cape) to pursue sonic research regarding the Camissa river system, indigeneity, coloniality and the City of Cape Town. The work produced through the residency builds upon the field recordings, performative methodologies and urban research he initiated at the Jukskei River headwaters in Johannesburg with composer and multi-instrumentalist Monthati Masebe – made possible by a Onebeat Accelerator grant award. His sound installation, spectres of //khamis sa: a listening well, was exhibited in the Oscillations – Cape Town-Berlin group exhibition at the Akademie der Künste in Berlin in May 2024. Muhammad has co-lead Afr(indi)an Fiction*, a collaborative composition-research initiative with Kinsmen and Zimbabwean percussionist and ethnomusicologist Othnell Mangoma Moyo – the output of which is an album and a process-dialogue archive visible at From 2019- 2021, he co-led Unit 19: The Act of Service, a research unit unpacking the relations between ideology, mythology and space in (post-)apartheid South African cities at the Graduate School of Architecture (GSA), University of Johannesburg.