an enrichment

I was pleasantly surprised today when I stumbled across Zacharia Mbutha‘s paintings on the second floor of? the GTZ HQ? building in Eschborn (here’s why, in German):

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Zacharia is a painter from Kenya, and while I am bit confused on the often-used definition of the term “contemporary” (where does it start, and where does it end? – afaik, ZM stopped painting some years ago?),? being surrounded by good paintings is just a very pleasant joy.

pick one

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“The most beautiful women on earth, the beauty that no amount of money can buy, the most powerful hair in Africa, the most wanted hair styles now in Africa, our business is to make ladies look beautiful. If you want to look beautiful, come to us now. The magic in weaving styles for beautiful women.”

I just had to buy this poster on River Road today. That is, where else do you get African beauty for 60 bob? :-)

Elungat’s paintings

Commuting between Embu and Nairobi during these hectic weeks at the end of the year 2006 almost made me forget about blogging one fine and important event I came across in Nairobi last weekend.

Kenyan painter Peter Elungat and designer Jutta Guglielmi rented the Exhibition Hall at Village Market – East Africa’s biggest shopping mall – for something like Kshs. 60.000 /= and exhibited their paintings and furnitures there.

I normally don’t like these exhibitions at the Village Market, as most artists these days – to me – just try to copy other artists and styles. Just earlier in december, I saw some fine paintings there that resembled those of Abushariaa Ahmed.
But then, I think art has to be taken where the customers are – and those at the Village Market seem to have enough money in the pocket.

Good art, though, is hard to find. And Peter Elungat’s painting were a refreshing alternative.

Sorry for the poor picture quality – I just had my mobile phone’s cam with me that day. However, I thought about sharing this with you. Also, I just took pictures of the paintings I really liked.

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@ 110.000 /= (sold!)

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@ 250.000 /= ….yes, Peter, that’s a LOT of money. Still :-)

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pls also note the furnitures & lamps by Jutta Guglielmi

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The artist himself!

I really really like these paintings and think Peter is one fine artists out there who has reason enough to sell his work at a decent level and to customers who know (feel!) the difference between good and bad paintings.

Also, I am still fighting with the idea of runing a website dedicated to fine arts in East Africa. I’ve mentioned this earlier a few times, and such a project requires some funding / adsense income, but right now I just lack enough time to pursue such activities. Now, how about an open blog where everyone can contribute? Let’s keep this in mind for 2007… (my webserver package only offers two MySQL data bases and I’ve already used the other one for this fine website :-)

The “Transformation of Thoughts into Form” exhibition is open to everyone @ Village Market, Exhibition Hall, 15th – 21st December, 9.30am – 6 pm.
(pieces purchased during the Exhibition will have a 10% discount)

roadside artists

The roadside is where the action is. There are some things out there you never get to see while travelling in a car. This especially applies to those Wazungu folks in their posh & red number plated 4WD cars who spend some years here and then say they’ve stayed in Aaaafrikaaaaa. Yeah, right.

Something like this (scrap metal art):

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the car

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the musician

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the kichwa tembo

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the kichwa again, this time with a flamingo and an old jacket

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a stalled eroplani

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TingaTinga paintings within nice wooden frames made out of driftwood – something where the Kenyan part in me argues that these frames can’t be good kwani they are already broken and the styler-part in me thinks: woah, yeah, great safari design, these guys have nice & inspiring catalogues.

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And then of course Bwana fundi seremala who takes 2 weeks to complete the door frame for this Lamu-door. Whoever ordered this door will receive some piece of really nice work. Think of something like Ksh 25.000/= and we’re in business. Now that’s even more than what my colleagues in Embu earn every month. Jobgroup J & K in the public service, you know?

There’s something about this City of Nairobi that always makes me come back.