US City declares 14 May ‘Dominic Benhura Day’

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By Paidashe Mandivengerei

UNITED STATES city of Carmel, Indiana has proclaimed May 14 as Dominic Benhura day after the internationally acclaimed Zimbabwean sculptor.

The proclamation is in honour of the value that Benhura’s art has added to the city’s economic development and diversity.

This comes after Carmel commissioned Benhura’s sculpture ‘Swing Me Higher, Mama’ made from a Zimbabwean natural rock, springstone depicting a mother playfully swinging her toddler daughter. It is 88 inches in height by 43 inches in width and 12 inches deep weighing approximately 900 pounds.

‘Swing Me Higher, Mama’ was unveiled in the city’s Arts and Design District and procured by Jayne During the owner and curator of Kuaba Gallery as a way of adding ‘value and diversity’ to the city’s art collection.

The masterpiece is located at the intersection of Main Street and Veteran’s Way next to Carmel Chocolate Cafe.

Dominic Benhura with the ‘Swing Me Higher, Mama’ art piece

The street corner is a home for artwork that is changed occasionally and Benhura‘s sculpture replaced previous art by Scott Osbourne.

Benhura who travelled from Zimbabwe to attend the piece’s unveiling said “this piece for Carmel is a sculpture celebrating the warmth of mothers, it is befitting since it will be installed in public and relates to everyone – to all visitors, the young and the old”.

Carmel Mayor Jim Brainard added: “Public art is an important part of our community’s culture, and it is equally important that our sculptures and art pieces continue to reflect the growing diversity of Carmel. That is why I am thrilled to welcome this new sculpture on Main Street for all to enjoy.

“It is important for the community as a whole to have access to art from around the world, regardless of a person’s income level and ability to travel globally. Carmel’s public art provides visual diversity to engage and inspire those who live, work or visit and enhances their experience while spending time here.”