The screening of ‘Ni Sisi’ at Kuona Trust
The film ‘Ni Sisi’ portrays a typical Kenyan community made up of different tribes.
Friends who had lived and worked together begin to identify each other according to their respective tribes. Mistrust swoops in together with a sense of threat.
Don’t miss out on this breath taking film-only at Kuona Trust this Friday 1st March from 6.30pm
Entry is absolutely free.
Peace Through Service exhibition
Some members of the Rotary club receiving a donation from FINA bank
‘Peace through Service’, our most recent exhibition was held at the Village Market Gallery from the 21st to the 26th of February 2013. This fund raising event was a collaboration between the Rotary Club of Nairobi East and Kuona Trust. A percentage of sales from the artwork went towards the support of four charities; The Thika School for the Blind, the Kajiado Water Project, Makindu Girl’s Centre and Korogocho Community Centre. The Exhibition featured some of the best and most recent works of over 30 Kuona Trust artists and invited guest artists -Peterson Kamwathi, Patrick Mukabi, Gor Soudan, Maggie Otieno and Peter Walala.
Artist Meshack Oiro talking to guests about his art piece
The ‘Viongozi exhibition’
Following the increase in civic education and literacy levels, Kenyans have become more enlightened on their rights and the importance of choosing the right leaders. With the rising political temperatures and spreading of false accusations and propaganda, one artist Brian Omolo chose to show our leaders in a different light. He managed to animate the portraits of some of the leaders in a way that added an element of humor-at the end of the day, they are people just like the rest of us.
The exhibition took place at Kuona Trust from the 31st of January to the 14th of February 2013.
Below-artist Brian omolo
Resident artists at Kuona
Kuona has a very vibrant and successful International artist residency programme which brings together artists from different countries with the aim of facilitating and developing artistic practice in the host country whilst building networks and encouraging peer to peer exchange. Artists participating in this programme are hosted at the Kuona Trust space for a two month long residency.
Chris Daniels is a British film and video digital artist who was part of the Kuona family during his 2 month residency. He was actively involved in the space working with a number of artists both at Kuona and in different communities. He is currently creating a feature film of his impressions of Kenya which include to a large extent the artists at Kuona, the current happenings in the country during the election campaign period, the football fanatism , the Matatu’s- local transportation system in Kenya and the political party affiliation that has almost become a form of identity amongst Kenyans. This film will be screened at Kuona in a couple of weeks, once he has completed the final edits.
During a three day workshop at Kuona, Chris had the opportunity to facilitate and teach various techniques and skills on stop motion and animation to a group of participants. At the end of the workshop the participants were able to create short animations that were later screened during Chris’s final exhibition.
Chris Daniels teaching a class during a workshop
On the 15th of February, Chris was able to share his footage from the 5 weeks he was in Nairobi at an outdoor screening and exhibition held at the Kuona Trust Gallery. His installation was accompanied by the sounds of Benga music from a live band performance by Ochieng’ Nelly an old-time Benga music legend. The Benga band was brought to us courtesy of Ketabul Music –http://www.ketebulmusic.org/artists/
The exhibition poster
Chris Daniels centered his attention on the elections which are currently a hot topic in Kenya. The installation in the gallery was a screening of his animation film that was projected onto some of the campaign posters and fliers that had literally been plastered like wallpaper on the walls of the neighborhood.
The gallery installation
Ochieng’ Nelly and his band during the event
Chris Daniels projecting live visuals onto the screen during the event
To read more about Chris Daniels and his various other projects ,Click here
Phillips Nzekwe visiting from Nigeria is a charismatic personality whose influence on the artists at Kuona was nothing but contagious. He proved himself to be both creative and innovative, teaching a sculpting workshop to a class of 12 adults. The participants learnt how to make sculptures using some of the traditional techniques unique to Nigeria. He also dedicated his time to making a concrete art sculpture that he donated to us and will be installed in the Kuona Trust garden. This piece of work was not completed and artist Meshack Oiro will attempt to complete it.
Phillips Nzekwe working in his studio at Kuona Trust
During his open studio event, Philips was able to interact with visiting art students and enthusiasts who were curious to learn more about his technique, which deviates from the more traditional forms of sculpting which involve chipping away at blocks of wood or stone.
During his Residency Philips created a number of pieces which were on show at a one day exhibition dabbed ‘Reaching Out’ a collaborative project between Kuona Trust and Iroko Art Consultants. This exhibition was held at the Nairobi Arts Centre on Sunday 17th February 2013 from 2pm-8pm attracting a large audience who came to view the work on show.
Phillips Nzekwe instructing a class during his residency
Phillips Nzekwe, Sylvia Gichia and Tocin of Iroko Art consultants at the exhibition
In an effort to change people’s perception and stereotypes about her country, a Kenyan film producer/director who goes by preferred name Ruby, set out to create a short clip that portrayed the best that Kenya has to offer. The clip was aired at the Kenya house in London during the Olympics and has since had over 17,000 views within the first four weeks of been uploaded onto YouTube. Click here to view.
Ruby’s aim was to portray aspects of Kenya that are not known to both tourists/investors and Kenyans in the diaspora who have not been in the country for years. Though she has not received any form of compensation for her work, Ruby steers on with invitations from others in different parts of the world who have seen and appreciated her efforts.
Film producer/Director, Ruby
The presentation took place on Thursday 14th February.
William Wambugu and Daniel Kamau
William Wambugu is a former Kuona artist who has been known for his distinct style – using cardboard paper, isographic pens and Chinese ink to draw functional objects that we see in our day to day lives. Last year, he exhibited his works at the Kuona gallery in an exhibition titled ‘Seats of Power’ which was curated by Samantha Ripa.
One of the works on display during the seats of power exhibition at Kuona Trust
His presentation focused mainly on the genesis of his journey as an artist from street art to fine art and the ways in which his style has changed over time.
Daniel Kamau is one of the new artists to join the Kuona family. He is also quite new to the Kenyan Art scene and hopes to grow within this community during his time at Kuona. His main interests are portrait realism, painting and shading.
During his presentation, Daniel talked about his interest in art and his ambitions for the near future.He also expressed his hopes of advancing his skills and networking with other artists during his stay at Kuona.
One of the portraits done by Daniel Kamau
Thirteen students from the International School of Kenya (ISK) came in for a series of workshops earlier in the month. Gakunju Kaigwa facilitated a plaster molding class, teaching the students how to mold various parts of the human form while Maryanne Muthoni took them through the process of painting a mural on the Kuona perimeter wall. The students had a fantastic time at Kuona and embraced the break from the monotony of classroom lessons.
A growing family is always a sign of life and vitality. We add three more members to our family here at Kuona Trust. In our aim to nurture and grow talent, we have added 3 young artists who are relatively new in the arts. Daniel Kamau, Joel Lukhovi and Lionel Garang become the youngest artists in the space with lots of new ideas and fresh insights. Watch this space for more.
Kuona artist, Ermias Ekube at the Alliance Francaise
Ermias Ekube’s exhibition ’Breath of Consciousness’ was officially opened at the Alliance Francaise on the 5th of February 2013. The bright, bold and daring colors drew the interest of many who showed up to view the artist’s work in his first solo exhibition in Nairobi.
For those who did not make it to the show, Ermias has a variety of work for show in his studio at Kuona Trust.
One of the works on show at the exhibition
Other ongoing exhibitions
Chalk on Board : A solo exhibition by Jan at Le Rustique .
The exhibition opened on Friday 15th February 2013 and runs till the 14th of March 2013.
‘Loving this home’ by Jason Corder
‘Loving this home’ by Jason Corder
Artist Jason Corder is no stranger to the Kenyan Visual Arts and Entertainment scene. Jason was once an artist at Kuona Trust and most recently he stars in a local TV soap ‘Mali’ that airs weekly on one of the popular local TV stations.
‘Loving this home’ , is Jason’s first music video which he launched at Kuona Trust gardens, taking a break from his acting and painting career. Revelers got to rock the night away with good music, good food and good company. If you missed this …you missed a really good party!!!
Click here to watch the video.
Life drawing workshops
Back by popular demand..Life drawing classes are back with more to learn and plenty of things to look forward to. From the 9th of February 2013 Kuona started a series of life drawing workshop that will run every fortnight taught by some of our most skilled artists.
Take advantage of this and sign up for the next class. You can call us on 0721262326 or send us an email to firstname.lastname@example.org to sign up.
Weaver bird Art camp
Weaver Bird Art camp 2013 took place in Masaka, Uganda from the 8th to the 10th Of February 2013. The aim of this camp is to create a platform for art collectors, curators, administrators and enthusiasts across the different boundaries to interact and exchange ideas based on the arts.
The camp takes place about four times a year in a little artistic village in Masaka called Ndgeya which is located at the peak of a great hill and draws the attention of both local and foreign tourists. In our effort to strengthen relationships with our neighboring art cultural partners, we were able to send 3 representatives from Kuona to attend this year’s camp.They took part in some of the art activities and also visited a few art galleries in Kampala.
Meshack Oiro and Ernest Ndung’u of Kuona Trust with Weaver bird founder, Collin Sekajugo
Our resource center is well on its way to becoming the best Art library in the region. We have added new books and have received a generous donation of Dvds and gramophones all of which are accessible to the public for a small library membership fee.
Our aim is to increase literacy in the arts in Kenya and to advance the skills of artists through providing access to new information and enabling them access available opportunities.
The Kuona Art Shop-
The Kuona Art Shop is now a one stop shop for all your art materials. Take advantage of our special offers and discounts and get a special gift for a loved one, for your home or office space. In stock we now have acrylic paints, paint brushes, canvas, staple guns and much more. We are also offering framing services through the Kuona art Shop.
In stock we also have the 2013 Kenya Arts Diary, small paintings from the artists, t shirts, prints and many more-all at affordable prices.
Hurry while stocks last!!
Kuona trust art shop
Before I die wall
Our installation is gaining great popularity with visitors writing down their greatest and craziest desires. We will soon start posting the craziest bucket list wishes so keep looking and pass by to add your contribution.
Opportunities for artists
1.The Mask art prize
THE MASK ART PRIZE is the annual national art competition that is open to all young people up to the age of 25 years old who live in Kenya or are members of the Kenyan diaspora.Three prizes to young artists of 55,000 Ksh each, a trip to London to one Winning artist, and one prize for a Kenyan state school of 100.000 Ksh will be awarded. Please click here for more information.
DEADLINE: The deadline for entering your artwork is 1 MAY 2013.
2. Thupelo, Greatmore studios from the 18th to the of 28th March
3. Manjano- Nairobi County Visual artist exhibition
4. The Aesthetica Art Prize
The Aesthetica Art Prize attracts a diverse range of contemporary art, we welcome entries from artists working in all media. Artists may submit their work into any one of the four categories for either the main prize or student prize:Photographic & Digital Art,Three Dimensional Design & Sculpture,Painting & Drawing,Installation, Video and Performance
Entry to the Aesthetica Art Prize is £15 and this allows for two entries of artwork from any one category. The deadline for entries is 31 August 2013
Enter the Aesthetica Art Prize today! Exhibit at a major exhibition in #York and win £1000! #art #artprize Visitwww.aestheticamagazine.com/artprize
“One day we must come to see that peace is not merely a distant goal that we seek, but that it is a means by which we arrive at that goal. We must pursue peaceful ends through peaceful means.”
~Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
We wish you all a peaceful election period.
Kuona Trust light moments
Kuona Trust 2013
Group photo of Kuona trust artists and staff taken at the beginning of the year.
Kuona trust will be closed on the 4th and 5th of March 2013 to allow artists and staff to participate in the general elections.
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