By Hussein Kiganda
Gone are the days when wall calendars were a big deal in households. From the flashy mansions of the rich to the humble huts in the countryside, calendars embellished the walls of every house.
The most notable times are those when calendars with artistes’ pictorials showing their wealth, family, songs, concerts, and more, were sold on the streets.
To attract customers, designers of these calendars would promote rivalries between artistes, especially Bebe Cool/Bobi Wine/ Chameleone, and Juliana Kanyomozi/Iryn Namubiru.
Deogratious Yiga, a visual artist, recalls that calendars carried important religious and spiritual messages that today’s youth have forsaken.
“First of all, pictures of many people of significance or repute used to grace our calendars, even saints or people who touched our spiritual life in the matter of faiths like the Catholics, or tourist attractions in the form of nature or features like dams, factories, etc and we have lost out on this,” Yiga says.
He elaborates on how useful a wall calendar was, citing that it would help people organise themselves for every year, noting the holidays, the weekends, and planning for visitation, prayer, and other important days.
Yiga sees these days are “gone never to return” and reasons that they have affected our zeal for knowing what is going on around us, and when we do check for the dates on our phones we do it with a casualness, which is much more than when we would go on to scan the dates of any particular month because they had a lot of details.
Nowadays, calendars are accessed through phones and others are distributed freely by learning institutions, Non-Government Organisations, companies, and several other bodies as advertisement tools.
Yiga foresees that in the coming days, calendars carrying message that date back 50 years plus would become a treasure and would be searched for, as tourist attractions.
He adds that in time, better designs will be made to make them special so that one who owns such designs is seen as being classy.
“But there will come a time when it is classy to have a beautifully designed calendar in someone’s sitting or dining room. It will indicate enlightenment, just like you see watches now more and more regarded as symbols of status,” Yiga predicts.
He keeps some of the old calendars in his house in Masaka.