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Four Zimbabwean artists eye gold in Italy
09/02/2017 00:00:00
by Showbiz Reporter

FOUR local artists are to represent Zimbabwe at the Pavillion 57th international Art Exhibition-La Biennale di Venice in Italy.

The four will be hunting for golden lion awards.

National Gallery of Zimbabwe in conjunction with the Ministry of Rural Development, Promotion and Preservation of National Culture and Heritage, chose Charles Bhebhe, Admire Kamudzengerere, Sylvester Mubayi and Dana Whabira as Zimbabwe representatives.

The four will create new artworks and multimedia installations that will transform the entirety of Santa Maria della Pieta into an authentic Zimbabwean environment, in Venice under the theme Deconstructing Boundaries.

National Gallery Chief curator Raphael Chikukwa said the four artists will conceive new works, incorporating sculpture, prints, drawings, objects, paintings and sound for the six galleries of the Zimbabwe Pavilion.

“The artists and their experiences in the ever changing world are the source of inspiration for the Zimbabwean Pavilion at Venice,” he said.

Chikukwa added, “In the face of relentless globalisation, physical boundaries are getting blurred and challenged.

“The Zimbabwe Pavilion Exhibition seeks to provide another perspective on the themes of humanity, allegory, identities, migration, patriotism and belonging.”

“The ideas of here and there, seeing and being seen, legal and illegal have remained subjects for debate and this exhibition seeks to provide some answers to these issues,” said Chikukwa.

The National Gallery of Zimbabwe is renowned for presenting ground breaking contemporary art exhibitions in and outside the country and has always served as a creative laboratory where artists are free to experiment.

New Zimbabwe caught up with Mubayi and he said: “I create sculptures of great beauty, often with a traditional meaning to them such as the bird as a messenger between ‘the other side’ and people.”

Bhebhe said, “I am completely captivated by people, absorbed by figurative works and my paintings tell a story at given time, more like a moment in time, sometimes a reflection of the times we live in.

“I am an artist whose parentage cultural heritage echoes from Poland just to mention but a few.

“Through my work I revisit the physical, cultural landscape to decontextualized meaning and narrative beyond binaries that have been pre-inscribed through controlling power structures,” said Whabira.


Admire told New Zimbabwe that his artistic dilemma is to engage the veins of unconsciousness in visual poetry and transfer them to language prose.

“My intention is to adopt some feminist tactics; find some order and serenity,” he added.

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