Kuona Trust July Newsletter

Newsletter July 2013

Absolut Art


Absoult Vodka  partnered with Kuona Trust to bring together  the first premier pop art party in Kenya. Six Kuona artists, Dickson Kaloki, Omosh Kindeh, Beth Kimwele,Paul Onditi and Kevin Oduor battled it out in a art competition aimed at creating the best artistic expression on the iconic absolute bottle.

Absolut Art

Final pieces from each of the participants of the Absolut Art competition

Kevin Oduor emerged the winner of the Ksh 50,000 cash prize  for what the judges thought was the most innovative idea. Omosh Kindeh and Sidney Mang’ong’o took second and third place.

Kevin Oduor- Absolut Balnk

Kevin Oduor receiving the cash prize for the best overall design

 The Creative Garages’s Pitstop

pitstop 2

One of the challenges most creatives face is the clear  lack of information in an industry that has been neglected for many years but non the less thrived without government support. To bridge the gap between creatives and various organizations in the arts, the Creatives Garage organized a one day creatives clinic that aims at having all questions answered as well as giving people knowledge on various issues such as copyrights, patents,opportunities available and how they can plug into their activities

Core partners included Wylde International, MCSK ( Music society of Kenya, Copyright board, ICT board, Kuona Trust, PAWA 254, Craft Afrika and Story moja.

Joram Mwinamo, Managing partner at Wylde International speaking on enterprenuership

Joram Mwinamo, Managing partner at Wylde International speaking on entrepreneurship

The Kuona Trust stand during the event

The Kuona Trust stand during the event

The event was a roaring success as those who attended not only got their questions answered but they had the chance to interact with other creatives in different fields and see some great art at Kuona.

The Kuona legacy

Our history is our identity and reminds us the purpose of our existence. Kuona Trust has finally come of age and has  finalized documenting its legacy 18 years on. Read about the genesis of the organization, its founder and how it all came together by following any of the links below:




Discoveries within Exhibition

Anki--final-poster FB

Often times we underestimate the much we could achieve when we dedicate our minds to a process. A group of artists under the instruction of Swedish print maker Anki Kollstrom, discovered a whole new way of applying the intaglio print making technique in a week long workshop at Kuona Trust .Anki was on a two month residency programme at Kuona Trust during which she taught two workshops, one of which was quite successful and participants got to show their work in the exhibition alongside their instructor.

Anki and other participants during the workshop

Anki and other participants during the workshop

During the exhibition, Anki was able to talk about her own work, where she experimented with new materials, mainly found objects she got from the neighborhood.

Anki Kallstrom during the exhibition

Anki Kallstrom during the exhibition

She was interviewed by Margareta Wagacheru, a writer with the local newspaper ‘Business Daily. To read the article click here

Type face and Heroes

Typeface & Heroes

Typeface & Heroes

New media is definitely catching on birthing  a new breed of artists who have abandoned the conventional artistic ways and ventured into a new path. One such artist is Brian Omolo .

As an artist, an Illustrator, and  a graphic designer who is passionate about creativity he is keen on creating work that captures and captivates his audience but still showing some aspect of humor. He exhibited some of his works in an exhibition dabbed ‘Typeface & Heroes at the Qpasa Bar and Bistro which ran from the 2nd to the 23rd of August 2013. The exhibition featured a variety of works that included a fusion of our childhood human and animal heroes.

Guests admiring artwork during the opening of the exhibition

Guests admiring artwork during the opening of the exhibition

Sudanese Vision

Yassir Ali and Fawas El Said  both based at Kuona Trust  held at month long exhibition at the National Museum this month showing some of their old and most recent work. Yassir has a distinct style often identifiable by the Nubian motifs that he uses in his paintings. Fawas, who is the younger of the duo  chose a more contemporary approach in his work, focusing on  semi abstract work.If you missed the show, you can still come and view the work in their studios at Kuona Trust.

Yassir Ali

Yassir Ali

Fawas el said

Fawas El Said

Ndegeya: Silent Possibilities

As the premier art centre in Kenya, Kuona Trust has endeavored to form strong partnerships with other art organizations in the region to facilitate an exchange of knowledge and skills.

One such partnership with the weaver bird art centre in Uganda resulted in one of our artists ,Joe Lukhovi go on a residency at the Weaver Bird  in Masaka, Uganda.During his stay Lukhovi was able to capture breath taking images of the daily day to day lives and activities  of the residents of Masaka .These pictures were shown in the Kuona gallery in a one week exhibition titled ‘Ndegeya: Silent Possibilities’

Ndegeya:Silent possibilities

To read more on  Joe Luknhovi’s experience in Kampala and view some of the images he took,click here

Usi Why Jali

Former Kuona artist Kota Otieno ,now based in Kibera at the new Usi-Why-Jali studios exhibited some of his work alongside other young and upcoming artists in the same area.

usi why jali

‘From the Godown to the CBD‘ exhibition

As the ambitious NAi Ni Who? project by the Godown Art centre drew to a close, the artists from the Godown Arts Centre organized an exhibition at the Alliance Francaise that showcased art work around the theme of the festival, our identity as Nairobians.


Nai Ni who? came to an end in pomp and colour in a  colourful ceremony that saw them appreciate the partners who  helped facilitate the project. Kuona Trust was appreciated for its support during the zone 10 celebration.

Tea time for 216

We periodically allow artists form different art centres and regions to come and work in the space, exchange ideas with other artists and generally take advantage of the create atmosphere to create new work. Early last month, we had the pleasure of hosting one Miriam Kings.

Miriam Kings

Miriam Kings

Miriam Kings is a an artist and a curator from a London who had lived in Kenya during the post colonial period. Her personal practice includes photography, video and audio. During her stay at Kuona she made a visit to her home town of Kiringaga District where she visited a girl’s boarding school and a theological college. The images she took from the tour were displayed in a four day exhibition at Kuona Trust which she named ‘Tea time for 216’ (The number of girls in a local boarding school she visited )

The images celebrated the rich fertility of the ground in the area,  the role of women in the community as well as other images  drawn from her family album.

Looking out at the valley (1)

To conclude her stay, we held a farewell party where other artists had the opportunity to meet and interact with Miriam.

Links, www.miriamkings.co.uk / www.50shillings.wordpress.com

Ermias Ekube’s farewell party and exhibition

Ermias Ekube has been part of Kuona Trust  for almost a year, he has  inspired us, challenged us with his dedication for his work and most of all he has impressed us with the unbelievable talent. Ermias left Kuona last month to venture into greater opportunities abroad and though we will miss him dearly, we wish him the best of luck in his new endeavors.

We had a farewell party for him at Kuona where we presented him with a painting that was a collaborative piece between the artists and staff. Ermias also exhibited some of the portraits he had done of the artists at Kuona in the gallery.

Ermias Ekube receiving a gift from Kuona

Ermias Ekube receiving a gift from Kuona’s Programmes & Marketing Officer Renee Mboya

Portrait exhibition

Portrait exhibition in the Kuona gallery

RIziki Nyambura’s  residency

Kuona has been quite  fortunate to have a vibrant and dynamic set of resident artist from our regional and international residency programmes. Riziki Nyambura who hails from the coastal town of Ukunda came on a four week residency at Kuona

Coming from an area that predominantly creates commercial art  for tourists, she benefited greatly from being in an environment where each artist has a distinctive style and is not necessarily driven by market demands but by the desire of self expression. She had an open studio event where she put her work on display and was able to network with members of the public share her ideas and discuss her artistic practice. Some of the work she displayed included artwork that bore new techniques she had learnt form other artists in the space who challenged her to use new medium.

Riziki Nyambura during her open studio event

Riziki Nyambura during her open studio event

Previous residents: Mario Macilau making headlines globally

“….alarming and provoking, arresting and engaging, public and private but, above all, utterly human”, These are just some of the words used to describe Mozambican photographer and former Kuona resident artist Mario Macilau. During his stay at Kuona, Macilau taught a photography workshop and had a combined exhibition ‘Itumba‘ with performance artist,Ntando Cele, also a resident at the time.

A picture by Mario Macilau

A picture by Mario Macilau

To watch Macilau’s interview with Aljazerra’s Francois Verster click here

Kuona Trust director at Nafasi  and Insakartists 

Our director, Sylvia Gichia was invited to the Insaka Art Centre in Zambia where she taught the artists there basic concepts on art professionalism. She was also able to go to Tanzani’s Nafasi Art centre to finalize agreements that would enable Kuona send out 9 artists on a residency programme at Nafasi and also receive a few from their end. It is our hope that these collaborations will open up Africa and provide opportunities for creatives to work together and share ideas and skills.

Sylvia at Insakartists Trust

Sylvia Gichia at the Insakartists Trust in Zambia


Creative Africa Network

This site is definitely worth checking out.  The Creative Africa Network  Forum is a platform for members to share information—such as calls for artists, residencies, workshops, competitions and awards, calls for papers, funding or other possibilities—providing professional information valuable to established and emerging artists as well as cultural liaisons.

Link : http://www.creativeafricanetwork.com/search/6507/en

Picture of the month

just fff

Metamophosis: Before an after pictures of Kuona Trust’s current location

Quote: ‘ The artist must create a spark before he can make a fire, and before art is born, the artist must be ready to be consumed by the fire of his own creation. -Auguste Rodin (12 November 1840 – 17 November 1917)

Rodin was a French sculptor and is   generally considered as the progenitor of modern sculpture.

Have a wonderful month.

Artist profile: Miriam Kings and the Tea for 216

Miriam Kings – Tea Time For 216.

Looking out at the valley (1)

Name:    Miriam Kings

City/Country:   London, England

Email:     miriamjessicak@gmail.com

Website :  www.miriamkings.co.uk   www.50shillings.wordpress.com,

Miriam is an artist and curator born in London who lived in Kenya from 1984-1991. Both her artistic and political interests are related to issues of human geography and community formation.


Miriam Kings

Miriam Kings

Tell me about your work? What are you currently working on? How is this different from past projects?

I have previously been involved in collaborative curating projects like Hackney Transient Arts Project (HTAP) (Hackney is a borough of London) which included editing talking heads interviews with Hackney residents on subjects such as what it means to call Hackney home, and conflict and displacement.  We (HTAP) also curated – and participated in as artists – a mapping one day exhibition set out like a fêtê, where the visitor moved from stall to stall, adding to or engaging with the five artists’ maps. The authoriship in this event was blurred as some ideas were quite collaborative between artists, secondly the exhibition visitor was contributing to make the work. (i.e.  thinking up words for a map, placing a counter on a board game, or bringing an object or photograph from their home to add to an installation.)

Participation and looking at the wider politics in how we conceptualise space and place are the two strands that link the projects done over the past 10 years. Each new project takes on a different form which is quite hard, you can’t say, I’m a painter, or I’m a sculptor. It’s also difficult to make a living from this kind of work.

How did you decide to become an artist?

When I was in art class at school I sat next to someone who was really talented at art I realized how much I wanted to be an artist. Art holds a unique space where it can communicate – separate to a commercial brief – using a visual response. A painting or a sculpture can change your mood for the whole day, perhaps the whole week- some works of art you never forget.

What was the best advice given to you as an artist?

Someone told me to respect your own decisions as an artist. You made that decision for a reason at that particular time, so then to undo that decision you are backtracking and it’s lots of work to back track.


Many artists struggle to find ways to sell their art.  How do you sell your work?  How do you market yourself?

The last piece of work I sold was two weeks ago and the time before that I hadn’t sold anything since 2004. So I do other jobs to financially support myself. This has meant for the past 10 years I’ve been working two jobs, sometimes ridiculous hours per, week sometimes 80+. Any money raised from donors or sales would spent on the exhibition, the venue, the installation etc. This isn’t a great work/life balance as you’re always working, one job for the money, second job for art, to be involved in creating an exhibition somehow.

I have two blogs one more formal, www.miriamkings.co.uk  and one for photography www.50shillings.wordpress.com, I market myself with these and also attend gallery events and openings of specific galleries I’d like to create a relationship with.

About Tea for 216

Before I arrived in Kenya I planned to make a video of the landscape of the valley I lived in for seven years in my childhood. I was inspired to use a technique used by artist Patrick Keiller’s work – a long shot that looks like a still photo, but as you watch it you realize it is a video. The view I planned was similar to the valley exhibition photo. The sound was going to be the natural valley sounds, birds, pigens hooting now and again, and the trees rustling. Due to various reasons I didn’t bring a video camera to Kenya so the work wasn’t realised. When I was shown the valley by Gacoki, who looked after me for five years of the seven,  I took a photo of him looking out at the valley. This photo for me represents the epic, almost spiritual, nutrients the hills provide the community. The culture of shambas – integrated into Kenyan life. The fact that if you have a plot of land and don’t plant on it, you’re mad.

When I came back to Kuona after my trip I asked if I could exhibit the photos in the gallery and kuona said ‘why not’ which was amazing to have a solo show. The photographs were taken on a camera phone. There are four themes that arise: The almost spiritual richness of the soil in the foothills of Mount Kenya – shamba culture-, womens cleansing actions of sweeping and cleaning, the role of women in church, and also, my perspective, the advantages we had as foreigners in a Kikuyu community. This is represented by my inclusion of  a photo of a photo album photo. The advantages we had, and I experienced when travelling back to visit, constrasts significantly with the difficulty that foreigners have when  visiting  or living in the UK.

 Who are some of the Nairobi/ Kenyan artists you enjoy?

James Muriuki has some beautiful photographs and bagged some interesting projects. Poet, actress, performer Ngwatilo Mawiyoo is very cool. I really enjoy Cyrus Kabiru’s work, it is utopic asthetically but also conceptually –  in the sence that it is fantastical, and the same time critical of the throwaway culture of the world. Some art ou just see and love, and it grows on you. With the matatu’s by Dennis Muraguri it was both. I like that each painting is of that particular moment in the life of a particular matatu or street scene. The paintings are are firstly satirical and fun, secondly, hopeful, holding contemporary Nairobi in a political story.


if I were to follow you around to see art in Nairobi, which places would we go? What would we see?

Kuona Trust, Go Down Arts centre, Talisman. Nairobi National Museum, Village Market,  Red Hill Gallery, Maasai Mbili, all good places.


In addition to www.kuonatrust.org, where do you go online for good art resources, whether to find a new artist, or to see what is going on in the art world locally and otherwise?

In Nairobi there are a few good blogs to find what is going on in the arts scene, mainly on facebook though- kuona always updates facebook regularly! Otherwise in the uk, http://www.artrabbit.com/ which is a website that shows art shows going on.


Do you have any exhibits to promote in the near future?

Yes tomorrow I’ll have a private view of some photographs. Its only in a storage room that we have painted white, we call it The Cloud Gallery, a bit like a square cloud- it’s quite small, but it works. I am working on a new blog at the moment, www.50shillings.wordpress.com, it’s a kind of sketchbook photographs- you can sign up to ‘follow’ the blog- and it will notify you when new pictures are posted.

What can we expect to see from you in the future?

I’d like to continue with Photograph series.

Parting shot, Miriam Kings with Kuona artist Omosh Kindeh during the ‘Tea Time for 216’  party

miriam and kindeh

Look out for picture of the exhibition and the party in our  July Newsletter.

Kuona Trust June Newsletter

Kuona Trust June Newsletter

Ongoing events

Print making workshop

Premier Swedish print maker Anki Kallstrom is currently conducting a print making workshop focused on the basic techniques of block print and intaglio. Those attending the workshop had the opportunity to learn how to prepare images from printing plates,  using the printing press as well as  printing on different materials including paper and fabric.

Participants will showcase the output of the workshop at the end of the week. Keep it here for the pictures.

‘Paradigm’- a collaboration between Kuona Trust and Kobo Trust

Paradigm is the title of  a group exhibition by three Kuona artists- Cyrus Kabiru, Dennis Muraguri and Sidney Mang’ong’o which officially opened at the Village market on the 10th of July 2013.

The art work on display is an output of the artists’ studio practice during the one year period  they were sponsored by the Kobo Trust. The trust sponsored the artists by helping them pay their studio rent and purchase  art materials

The Kobo trust continues to work closely with Kuona Trust and is already looking into sponsoring new artists for the second half of the year.

poster (1)

The exhibition is on till the  18th  of July 2013 at the Village Market.

Past events

Nai Ni Who? Project

Nai Ni Who? poster

Nai Ni Who? poster

The Nai Ni Who? (Who is Nairobi?) project took Nairobi by storm, with already four festivals done, there is no holding back. The ambitious project by the GoDown Art Centre had the aim of creating festivals around different zones in Nairobi to create a sense of community and ownership. People had the chance to celebrate what they felt was represented their neighborhood best in a week long festival that saw hundreds of people join the cause and spread the message on various social sites such as Facebook and Twitter.

Kuona Trust pioneered the zone ten festival with back to back activities happening in all the major traffic areas and malls among others.

Some of the highlights from the week are as follows.

Screening of the film ‘Premier/Divisions’ by Chris Paul Daniels at the Yaya Centre roof top. The film is an output of a residency programme at Kuona Trust in which Chris sheds light on the divisions that cut across the modern Kenyan society with particular reference to tribe and social class.

Premier/Divisions is to preview in the UK alongside the  Manchester International Festival

Links: Chris Paul Daniels blog spot


Screening of Kirik at the Kenyatta National Hospital children’s cancer ward. This was an extension of an ongoing project by various artists who teach an art class twice a week to the young ones.

Children and their caretakers watching a movie

Children and their caretakers watching a movie

The C-stunners and graffiti public art projects

NAI NI WHO1 stunners

The yoga sessions with the Yoga Africa project who conducted two yoga sessions during the Nai Ni Who? Week and the street March from Kilimani primary.

Street march

Street march

Planet Tiba run by the Maasai Mbili art centre and a few friends including Maya Von Lekow. Onlookers were treated to some tasty colored maize that was well roasted by the team.

Planet Tiba

Planet Tiba

Weaver bird Art camp

Kuona trust collaborated with Weaver bird founder Collin Sekajugo in this the just concluded art  that took place in Masaka, Uganda.. Five artists from Kuona spent a week in Masaka, actively interacting with the community and introducing them to the fundamentals of sculpting as a form of visual art.

Weaver bird

Screening ‘I am breathing’

‘I Am Breathing ‘ is a moving film by Emma Davie & Morag McKinnon which tells the story of a young man who suffers from Motor Neuron Disease and eventually succumbs to the disease  14 months after diagnosis.


The screening was organized by DOCUBOX, a newly established documentary film fund for East Africa founded by Judy Kibinge. This was as part of a global initiative to show the same film in over 100 cities all over the world on the same day and also create awareness on the disease whose cause had remained a mystery and had no known cure.

Picture of the Month

The New Kuona Trust gate

The New Kuona Trust gate

It is said that that first impressions are most crucial, they determine how others relate with us and the image they carry of us  hence fourth,being an artistic space we decided to follow suit and we thus unveil our new look gate.

We acknowledge the following artists for their hard work and creativity- Jacqueline Karuti, Kevin Oduor, David Mwaniki, Anthony Wanjau, Tonney Mugo and Lionel Garang, Meshack Oiro and Dennis Muraguri led ably by Mutheu Mbondo.


Have a wonderful month 🙂

Kuona Trust May Newletter

The month of May was marked by a premier screenings of an African film, exhibitions and workshops among other events. Here is a look at all the activities that went down at Kuona trust in the month of May.

The Unsellable art exhibition

Art may be regarded as the safest way to speak about issues that are considered politically incorrect or that touch on social matters most people shun from talking about.

The National museum of Kenya organized a one of a kind exhibition showcasing art work that was both evocative and provoking. Artists had the chance to show work based on the same theme, some of which had never been seen by the public.

The exhibition took place at the Creativity Gallery of the National Museum of Kenya from May 21st to June 4th 2013.

unsellable art

Gallery installation

What started out as a group of friends working from home in a small house in Kibera  evolved into an art club going by the name ‘the Jolly Boys Club’ where the artists teach art to anyone who has sufficient interest in learning  new techniques. The pioneer of this project, Gor Soudan has managed to bring art closer to the people with his fellow counterparts, Andrew Njoroge and  Mbuthia Maina. Like the three musketeers they have managed to rally the community around them and inject some creativity into them.

The three artists had the chance to display some of the work they had done in the Kuona gallery featuring the work of a young boy who had recently learnt the art of painting.

Jolly boys club presentation

Jolly boys club presentation

IP  workshop

The day long ‘Know your Intellectual Property’ workshop was facilitated at NaiLab by IP Checkin, Centre for Intellectual Property and Information Technology Law ( CiPIT) and Kenya Copyright Board (KeCOBO)
This workshop covered copyright, Infringement, Protecting your IP, Agreements, Rights and the different ways you can make a living off your Intellectual Property.

It was proudly sponsored by Creatives Garage, BAKE, POWO, Craft Afrika, PAWA254 and Arterial Network.

For more information, please visit the organizations’ respective websites.


Rwanda workshops

The Institute of National Museums of Rwanda opened its doors to sculpture artists and students majoring in sculpture art from East African countries. The six day workshop held at the National Art Gallery in Nyanza took place between the 12th and 18th of May 2013

The workshop was supervised by three artists: Medard Bizimana (RW), Lilian Nabulime (UG) and Peterson Kamwathi (KE).They developed sketches with the participants which were later showcased in the exhibition ‘Kingship & Kinship’ which focused on depicting the last 3 kings of Rwanda.

Kuona Trust was well represented by a staff member who managed to attend the workshop and the exhibition opening.

One of the collaborative works from the workshop

One of the collaborative works from the workshop

Japanese artists from Nishio Workshop Nairobi at Kuona

Nishio workshop Nairobi is a new organization that fosters artistic exchanged between artists in Japan and Kenya through residencies and exhibitions

They were able to facilitate an artist presentation by two Japanese artists Yukihiro Taguchi & Shuta Hasunuma.

Yukihiro Taguchi specializes in video, animation, drawing and installation. He creates unique animation using stop motion technique. Yukihiro  was awarded the excellent prize in the Japan Media Arts Festival (2008 ) .http://yukihirotaguchi.com/

Shuta Hasunum works in contemporary music and installation. He has released a variety of music albums from both Japanese and abroad labels. Link-http://www.shutahasunuma.com/

The two artists had the opportunity to share their work and engage with the other artists at Kuona.

nishio artists (5)

Artists from Nishio Workshop giving a presentation

In the case of books

Jackie Karuti, a visual artist and performer based at Kuona Trust did a dust up the libreraies project. Together with other book lovers, they were able to dust the shelves on 8 libraries within Nairobi including home and public libraries.

The whole project was aimed at creating an interactive performance around libraries to encourage people to read books.

To know more about the project and other interesting activities log on to Jacqueline Karuti’s blog –The Thirdroom Studios 


The group, cleaning up a library

Tonney Mugo and Peterson Kamwathi,who took part in the project

Tonney Mugo and Peterson Kamwathi,who took part in the project

The buzz around African Art

Undoubtedly, there is growing interest among art collectors and buyers in African art.

In the recent  years,there has been an increase in the number of art work shipped abroad from Africa and the art shows held in galleries abroad.

Al Jazeera’s Nazanine Moshiri reports from Nairobi on the artwork going on sale in one of London’s auction house Bonhams.

Watch the video here


1.Politics of food residency


2.Kenyatta University offering scholarships to art students


3. Arts diary residency opportunity


Picture of the month

Nai Ni who? festival

Nai Ni who? festival

Kuona artists and staff at the  C -stunners public art performance,in collaboration with the Nai ni Who? project.

Read more about this in next month’s newsletter.

Plug in and give us your feedback:

Facebook Kuona Trust


Quote: “ What moves men to genius..what inspires their work,is not new ideas but their obsession with the idea that what has already been said is still not enough” -Eugene Delacroix

Have a great month!

Kuona Trust April Newsletter

Upcoming events

Save the date for: ‘ Beyond Stereotypes’ an exhibition  by Tonney Mugo

This is a one of a kind  exhibition to be held at Kuona Trust with the  artist working predominantly in glass. Tonney Mugo’s designs on glass seeks to reflect and enhance the architectural setting while expressing a meaning for aesthetic that goes beyond mere decoration.In this exhibition, he experiments with the different forms glass can take as well as  opening up our minds to various possibilities on its functionality.

Exhibition opens on the 7th of June  @Kuona Trust and runs to the 19th of June 2013

tonney A3poster

Nai Ni Who? Project

From May 11th to August 3rd, Nairobi is in the spotlight, sharing who we are – the real Nairobians, warts and all! And celebrating our specialness!

Nai Ni Who? Is a 12 week festival exploring the city of Nairobi, it’s residents & neighbourhoods. Who makes up Nairobi?

The project will host 12 festivals in all covering 12 neighborhood zones.

Like the Nai Ni who? Page on Facebook- http://www.facebook.com/NaiNiWho?fref=ts

Or check out their website http://www.nainiwho.com/

Kuona trust will be spearheading the Nai Ni Who? festival for the Kilimani area from the 8th -14th of June 2013.Lots of activities and events to look forward to.

nai ni who

Welding workshop

For the first time this year,Kuona Trust will be holding a welding workshop instructed by some of our best sculptors working in mixed media  forms.The workshop is open to all those who have a passion for sculpting and would want to learn this skill.

The dates for this will be communicated,so keep watching this space.

kuona trust workshop

Past and current events

Akili dada happy hour

Akili Dada is a leadership incubator investing in the next generation of African leaders. It’s goal is to empower young women  through  mentorship and educational sponsorship programmes as well as exposing them to different career fields.

Students sponsored by Akili Dada on a tour of Kuona Trust

Students sponsored by Akili Dada on a tour of Kuona Trust

On the 16th of May 2013,Kuona Trust  hosted the Akili dada happy hour attended by several guests and  a group of panelists who tackled the topic ‘the future of art education in Kenya’.Some of the panelists included

The three hour event saw the audience actively engage with the panelists concerning art,copyright issues, education and freedom of expression. Those who could not attend the event followed the discussion on twitter where had the chance to contribute their ideas on the same. For those who were visiting Kuona for the first time, it was a fantastic opportunity to mingle with the artists and look at some of the artwork displayed in their studios.

Pannelists-Sylvia Gichia,June and Judy Ogana

Inset: Sylvia Gichia,June Gichui and Judy Ogana

Screening of Ndoto za Elibidi

Though we were unable to screen the film ‘Divisions/Premier’ due to some technical hitches,we were treated to a spectacular film by SAFE ghetto by the name ’Ndoto za Elibidi’ (The dreams of Elibidi)

This film is set up in a stage/reality mix where the audience is both the spectator of a play on a stage and actual events that take place along the same story line. The story is that of a backward community who suddenly begin to segregate the family of a man known as Elibidi upon the realization that some of them were infected with the HIV virus.

Slowly the community begins to pull out of this mindset and encouraging others to go for HIV testing.All this unfolds to make a one of a kind film filled with humour and rib cracking satire that is  ordinary language used by common man  in Kenya. Ndoto za Elibidi is one of those films you just can’t miss out on. All those who would like a copy could purchase it through the Kuona shop or get in touch with us  on 0721262326

Screening of Ndoto za Elibidi

Screening of Ndoto za Elibidi

New artists

Kuona welcomes two new artists to the space,Dickson Kaloki and Dennis Lemek

Dennis Lemek   attended the Creative Art Centre, he works with  pastels and charcoal but also enjoys experimenting with paints and canvas.

Dickson studied interior design  at the Buruburu Institute of Fine Art, he has exhibited both locally and internationally and joins Kuona Trust from the GoDown art centre.

The ‘ Big red book project’

As we say goodbye to our artists in residence, we recognize all the wonderful work they have done and exchange of ideas, experiences and knowledge they have shared with the artists.

The residents, Joseph Weche (Kenya) and Ivan Bwambale (Uganda) were at Kuona trust for a period of four weeks. They had the opportunity to tour various art galleries and space in Nairobi as well as mingle with other artists in the Kenyan art scene.

Joseph Weche

Joseph Weche

Weche works predominantly  in charcoal although he has tried his had in photography.He is  part of a larger group of artists based at the Wajuku Art centre in Mukuru, Nairobi.The centre works in the community  teaching art as well as tackle other social issues affecting the people.

During his residency, Ivan Bwambale initiated a public art project dabbed the Big red book project’ that moved to different parts of Nairobi drawing a mixture of varied reactions. The public was invited to write on sheets of paper mounted inside a wooden box curved out in the form of a book.The project required people to write what makes them proud to be Kenyan and what they think would bring us closer as a country with many tribes.

Ivan also had the chance to have a Master class power  salon at Pawa254 where he gave a talk about his work as an artist and what he hopes to achieve with the big red book project.

The 'Big red book' public art project

The ‘Big red book’ public art project

The output of their residency was presented in an an open studio event that took place at Kuona trust at the end of their residency period.

open sudio

Artist presentations

We were privileged to interact with found object artist,Ifeoma  from Nigeria. She is a sculptor who focuses on up cycling of plastic bags to create functional objects with an artsy touch.All her materials are recycled and reused to make new art work so that nothing is thrown away.

The artists were challenged  to use re-cycled materials in their artwork as an alternative medium.

Ifeoma Anyaeji

Ifeoma Anyaeji talking about her work


We have had some  interesting people walk through or doors, notably was the visit from the Mayor of Denver Colorado who toured Kuona trust in the company of  colleges.  They are part of the sister cities organization that aims at creating collaborations with different cities in the area of infrastructure,arts and culture among others fields.We are  looking forward to future collaborations with them in an effort to take Kenyan art beyond our regional boundaries.

Contribution to scholarly works

Kuona plays a key role in the development of research findings and contribution of knowledge in the arts. We have had a great number of students and researchers come into the space to gather information for their projects and thesis on issues ranging from  the impact of arts on the community to the export of authentic pieces of artwork from Africa to western galleries and museums.

As an organization we are comitted to the development and advancement in knowledge in the arts which is unfortunately lacking in our country.We welcome all those who would want assistance and guidance on the same.Interested parties can send us their inquiries on info@kuonatrust.org


Finishing a sculpture

Renowned sculptor,Gakunju Kaigwa instructed a  workshop on how to finish a sculpture. The process was done practically on a fibre glass sculpture by a fellow artist Meshack Oiro. The workshop was well attended with about 18 artist following keenly on the step by step process.They learnt how to give a sculpture the perfect finish taking into consideration the kind of effect one wants to bring out.

Sculpture by Meshack Oiro

Sculpture by Meshack Oiro

Exhibitions around town

Art a glance

From the 2nd to the 31st of May at the Kenya cultural center (National theatre )

An exhibition organized by the little art gallery, featuring artists include Ermias Ekube, Adil Roufi,Wycliff Opondo, Gor Soudan and Anthony Mugo.

KCC e-invite

Masquerade by Anthony Okello

At one off gallery now till the 26th of May to the 26th of June 2013 @the one off gallery

Opens Sunday 26th May at 11pm till 5pm.


Exhibition by Justus Kyalo

Opening at the Red hill art gallery on the 2nd of June 2012 from 11am- 5pm

This is a retrospective of the artist’s work from 1993 to date

For more information, call 0700 108 989

Shop update

Good news!! The shop is now open for longer on Saturday. Due to increased demand, the shop will now be open till 4pm on Saturday for those who want to do some last minute shopping.

You can now get all your art supplies at the Kuona art shop. We also have small paintings, gift items and gift vouchers that would be ideal as a gift for a loved one.

Kuona shop (3)

 Interesting on line articles on Kuona artists

Paul Onditi

Paul Onditi

Paul Onditi on the Addis Rumble http://addisrumble.com/?p=3215

Artist Brian Omolo

Artist Brian Omolo

Brian Omolo in the Business Daily online newspaper http://www.businessdailyafrica.com/Graphic-designer-taps-technology-in-digital-art-venture/-/539444/1733116/-/jxugb5/-/index.html

Cyrus Kabiru

Cyrus Kabiru

Cyrus Kabiru in the Business Daily online newspaper http://www.businessdailyafrica.com/Kenyan-artist-stuns-the-world-with-his-C-Stunners/-/1248928/1739382/-/3w92mpz/-/index.html

Peace through service

Peace through service

Kuona trust group exhibition at the Village market http://www.businessdailyafrica.com/Artists-showcase-works-for-charity/-/1248928/1713940/-/4smkt8/-/index.html

Kuona Trust March Newsletter

Kuona Trust Newsletter

New artists in residence

As part of Kuona Trust’s  efforts to facilitate the exchange of ideas in the arts community, we welcome two new resident artists in the art space, Ivan who is a sculptor from Uganda and Joseph Weche who is a painter from Kenya and works with the Wajukuu arts center in Mukuru.

These residents will be on board and available for the next four weeks. We will host open studio events and workshops facilitated by each of these artists,so feel free to pass by and interact with them.


Ivan Bwambale

Joseph Weche

New artists

Three more artists join us this month: Dickson Kaloki, Ulrich Zeisluffti and William Brown otherwise known as Uhuru.

Keep a look out for the artists’ profiles and art work on our website www.kuonatrust.org


Some of the artists at Kuona Trust have been conducting a series of mentorship sessions at the  University of Nairobi. The art and design students taking a unit on African art were able to interact with the artists who talked bout their work process and the challenges of being an artist in Kenya.

The artists who have participated thus far include master portrait artist Ermias Ekube, renowned sculptor Kevin Oduor,glass artist Tonney Mugo and Jacqueline Karuti one of the young artists at Kuona who works as a visual and performance artist.

Kevin oduor

Kevin oduor

Tonney Mugo giving a talk on the design process

Tonney Mugo giving a talk on the design process



Vershuka Bohn

Veruschka Bohn works as a  photographer, filmmaker, illustrator and a dancer.She is one of the few versatile female artists in the arts industry today who has managed to work in several forms,pushing social and stereotypical boundaries yet appearing to be very comfortable in all her techniques. 

In her presentation at Kuona Trust she had the opportunity to show her work with the other artists,share her ideas as well as answer questions about her present and future  aspirations.

To read more on  Veruschka Bohn’s work click here.

Veruschka Bohn talking about her work during the presentation

Veruschka Bohn talking about her work during the presentation


Art2bebody-introduction to body mapping by Xavier Verhoest

Art2Be is composed of a group of Kenyan and International visual artists and therapists based in Nairobi.  They work with marginalized groups and  professional health staff in to foster positive, healthy living and social change.

Xavier is one of the co founders of the organization Art2Be and has assisted in facilitating several creative and therapeutic programmes in the commmunity.During his presentation,he was able to explain how the programme has impacted the community, the milestones they have covered since its inception and the challenges they face.

For more information on Art2be and how you can get involved with the organizatin, please visit http://www.art2bebodymaps.com/

One of the body mapping programme  participants

One of the body mapping programme participants

Xavier Verhoest

Xavier Verhoest

Pubic art presentation by Mutheu Mbondo

Public art as Mutheu Mbondo would put it is simply art that is in the public space. These works art are usually placed in a public place to allow the public to actively interact with them. In most cases its aimed at passing a message, creating conversations around a certain topic or even purely for entertainment.

While public art is prominent in most parts of the world, it is yet to catch on in Kenya mostly due to difficulties in obtaining permits from the city council. This ambitious young lady is however set on changing the public art scene in Nairobi by engaging artist in creating artwork.

In her presentation,Mutheu challenged the artists to work with her in doing more public art projects in and around Nairobi even with the current challenges in funding and lack of support from the local authorities.


Kuona Trust’s new funky T-shirts

Our current edition of the Kuona shirt is now available in the shop for a discounted price of KSh 500 bob for adults and Ksh 400 for kids. Hurry up and get yourself one in this limited edition print.

We are now selling easels. Painting will  be much easier once you get yourself  one of these.Pass by the shop and get yourself one.You may also place an order.

 Life drawing workshop

Kuona Trust has started a series of workshops every fortnight, taught by some of our best portrait artists Ermias ekube,Yassir Ali, Fed Abuga among others.

The class is on every second Saturday. For a small fee, participants are taught how to work with pencil and charcoal as a beginners class and further graduate to a more advanced class.

To reserve a place or get more information please call us on 0721262326

life drawing workshop with Ermias Ekube

life drawing workshop with Ermias Ekube

ermias life drawing (6)

Friends of the Arts exhibition at ISK (The international school of Kenya)

The annual FOTA art show and sale organized by the ISK took place between  the 5th and the 8th of   April 2013. It showcased the works of over 100 artists who took part in the exhibition.All profits from the show went to fostering collaboration between local artists and children.

The Manjano art competition

Once again a Kuona Trust artist scooped the top price at this year’s Manjano Art Exhibition. Wycliff Opondo won first prize clinching a cool Ksh 300,000 followed by Ermias Ekube who won second place and was awarded Ksh 150,000.Last year, Kuona artist Omosh Kindeh was the big winner of the annual competition.

The exhibition was organized  with the support of the Godown arts center and is aimed at portraying artistic expressions that explores the human interest aspect of the city of Nairobi. Artists were asked to submit paintings, sculptures and mixed media work that would be entered into the competition.

Wycliff Opondo

Wycliff Opondo

Ermias Ekube recieving his cash pize

Ermias Ekube recieving his cash pize

SWAN day

SWAN day (Support Women Artist Now day) is an international holiday to celebrate the creativity of women artist. Kuona trust celebrated the sixth annual SWAN day in a two day event that took place at the Phoenix Theatre on the 30th of March and Kuona Trust on the 31st of March 2013.The day was a roaring success with artists doing spoken word, dance and music performances. Some craft vendors were also on site selling some of their items. We also had a special book reading by Eva Kasaya , a young woman who rose from being a house help to an interpreter and wrote the book ‘Tale of Kasaya’ published by Kwani trust in the year 2010.

Some of the artists who participated in the event included Tabitha Wa Thuku, Maggie Otieno,Veronica Wanjeri,  Lydiah Dola, and Masallah among others

Core sponsors included  Kuona Trust, Phoenix Theatre, Do A Little Fund, Women Arts, Ghetto Exposed, Grandpa Records and KCOMNET.

kuona trust/swan


The SWAN ladies getting their groove on

The SWAN ladies getting their groove on

Kuona trust outreach programs

Kuona trust is involved in many community outreach programmes that aim at getting art back into the community. We have partnered with several organizations who assist in making this happen. One of our artists Maryanne Muthoni is currently working with a rehabilitation home for boys in Kabete teaching them various ways of expressing themselves artistically.

kuona outreach

kuona programmes

The Sane Wadu Centre, based in Naivasha is also working with the local community, which mostly includes young adults, in various genres of the visual arts including painting and printmaking.

We have also partnered with Shabu Mwangi of Wajukuu art center in Mukuru slum.He is also currently working with people from the surrounding community, teaching them  basics art techniques.

Cyrus Kabiru 2013 TED fellow

TED is one of the most talked about shows in the planet hands down! It not only shows some of the most innovative and creative minds but also inspires new techniques and technology.

Their main mandate is to share some of the best ideas people have come up with hence their slogan’ Ideas worth sharing’. For the year 2013, TED chose one of the Kuona artists to be part of this conference. Cyrus Kabiru’s use of recycled material to make aesthetic pieces of artwork has gained him worldwide recognition.

photo (1)

Cyrus Kabiru with other TED fellows during a tour

Cyrus Kabiru with other TED fellows during a tour

He travelled to San Francisco where he met with other TED fellows including the young Kenyan Maasai boy who found a way of keeping lions from attacking their cattle at night using flashlights.Read more.

Richard Turere

Richard Turere


1.Exhibition: How I see politics by James Mbuthia

Venue: One off gallery

Dates: 7th -24th  April

2. Exhibition: Works by Sudanese artist  Abushariaa Ahmed

Venue: Red Hill Art gallery between Banana Hill and Ngecha Village

Dates: Now till the end of April 2013

Contacts: Mobile + 254 700 108989

3.Exhibition: Works by Gor Soudan at the Talisman restaurant from 16th April- 7th May 2013


1. ArtGemini £5,000 cash prizes 

The ArtGemini Prize is a celebration to promote international contemporary art for emerging and established artists around the world.

It is an independent competition, open to all artists from anywhere in the world. There is no age limit for applicants. The winners will be announced at an exhibition of the finalists’ works in London.

In addition, selected artists will have the opportunity to showcase and sell their works in London while supporting our selected charity

2. The 2013 Mask prize: Kenyan Art competition for young people

 Please be advised that the 2013 MASK ART PRIZE, the annual national art competition in Kenya, is now open to

  • any Kenyan school (state or private, polytechnics, colleges and universities), and
  • any young person up to the age of 25  who lives in Kenya or is a member of the Kenya diaspora.

Enter the artworks to win Prizes and exhibit at the Nairobi National Museum in June 2013 and the SaatchiGallery in London in September 2013.

Deadline: 1st March 2013

Prizes include:

  • The three best artists will be awarded a prize of Ksh 55,000 each, and one of them – a trip to London.
  • One schoolwith the best and highest number of artworks entered, will be awarded a year’s supply of art materials worth Ksh 100,000.
  • The winning artists and the representatives of the winning school will be invited to the Prize-Giving Ceremony in Nairobi on 11th June 2013.

ENTER for FREE any number of artworks (paintings, drawings, prints, collages, or works made
out of recycled materials) on paper, canvas, or boards on the theme ‘What makes you proud about Kenya’, not smaller than A4 (30x21cm) or larger than A1 (85x60cm).

Picture of the week

Never permit a dichotomy to rule your life, a dichotomy in which you hate what you do so you can have pleasure in your spare time. Look for a situation in which your work will give you as much happiness as your spare time~ Pablo picasso

A life size kite soaring into the sky during the smART power project with Miguel Luciano

A life size kite soaring into the sky during the smART power project with Miguel Luciano

Kuona Trust 2013 January Newsletter

Happy new year. We thank you for all your help and support during the previous  year and look forward to a fantastic 2013 full of  exciting art activities and events. We start this year’s newsletter with a brief recap of some of the activities that took place during the last quarter of the year 2012.

Kuona Trust open day

The Kuona Trust Open Days have become a key bi- annual event, providing a multi-faceted platform that supports open engagement between Kenyan artists and the public. Over the years, this event has enlisted loyal support from thousands of people from Kenya and around the world and with each year,our challenge is to meet their growing expectations while attracting new audiences. Our last open day achieved just that as all roads led to Kuona trust on the 14th and the 15th of December 2012.

We had an exhilarating two day open day which was much different from the ones we previously had and it proved to be one of the most interesting and well attended yet.  We partnered with several organizations including Kwani Trust, the Kilimani Festival and Absolut Vodka to bring the audience a spectacular 2 day experience.

On Friday 14th, in collaboration with Kwani Trust, we had an exhibition of works by artists from the Horn of Africa region followed by a panel discussion with the artists and writers dabbed ‘Conversations from the Horn’. This evening culminated with an electrifying performance by the Electique Afrique band /DJ’s that managed to turn our garden into a dance floor.

Saturday the 15th was a family fun day with plenty of art activities and workshops for everyone- kids of all ages and adults.  Our annual wall Mural and the ‘Before I die…’  wall were a big hit for the day, and everyone had an opportunity to write at least one thing on their bucket list.

before I die wall

The’ Before I die..’ was a personal favorite to many who got to write on it

The evening saw a great crowd come in to enjoy live music from some homegrown Kenyan artists  some of whom have gained great fame internationally. Mo pearson and the Yellow Light Machine Band started us off with a some soft rock while Mutheu Mbondo, Mutinda and Atemi rocked the house with their amazing vocals. Absolut Vodka sponsored the evening giving our guests an absolutely amazing experience with their enjoyable variety of cocktails.

Kids having fun during the  Open day

Kids having fun during the Open day

And then there was the after party with barbecue and good music

And then there was the after party with barbecue and good music

The 254 Open Golf Tournament

The 254 Open golf tournament was a networking event aimed at bringing Kenyans from the diaspora together with Kenyans closer to home. It was held at the Winsor Golf and Country Club on the 21st of December with all proceeds going to the Akili Dada mentorship programme.  This programme that aims at empowering  young women through education.

Kuona was invited and given the opportunity to showcase the best of African art in the Kenyan market as well as build awareness on the contemporary visual arts scene in Kenya.  These type of events have increased our audiences and we are seeing between 30-50% increase in visitors to the art centre.


Ermias Ekube working on a guest’s potrait


Some of the artwork on display during the event


Anne Feenstra

Anne Feenstra is an architect who owns an architectural firm in Afghanistan that has made a tremendous contribution to the lives of ordinary people. Together with his team, Anne has managed to build homes and commercial buildings using locally available materials while  incorporating modern technology at the same time. Among these are the use of solar panels and internal cooling systems. They have also built bridges and several maternity hospitals greatly enhancing the welfare of the local afghan communities.

During his presentation at Kuona Trust, Anne Feenstra was able to share the inspiration behind his work, the medium he uses and the value he continues to add to the community through his work.  He also talked about his interesting concepts and particularly one on the use of the ‘Pakul’ in Afghanistan. The Pakul is a soft, round-topped hat worn by the men and is  typically made of wool and found in any of a variety of earthy colors including brown, black, gray, and  ivory. He showed us images of some of his photography work where he  has photographed the different designs and colours of the Pakul which forms a great part if the people’s culture.

Anne during his presentation in one of the artist studios at Kuona Trust

Anne during his presentation in one of the artist studios at Kuona Trust

Hans Doctor

In attendance, Hans Doctor,Head of Development corporation RNE

Mirjam Devrendt

It is not always easy to bring out elements such as emotions and texture on a photograph. Mirjam Devrendt has however managed  to capture the story of a young artists Berlinde De Bruyckere who looks at the plight of horses during the two world wars as well as other body  forms that make up the human body. Mirjam has captured the various installations by Berlinde to great detail depicting how  fragile we are as human beings.

With the use of various analogue cameras  Mirjam is able to find the perfect balance between the light and position of the installations that bring out a wealth of emotions.

During her visit to Kenya where she was part of an exhibition Funua-Fufuka, Mirjam had the chance to pass by our centre and exchange ideas with the other artists in the space who were quite interested in her journey as a photographer as well as her astonishing techniques.


Mirjam Devrendt

Installation by Berlinde-Bruyckere

Installation by Berlinde-Bruyckere

New residents

Kuona Trust’s residency program  functions as a platform to facilitate transfer of knowledge and skills  in the visual arts. Each year we welcome a few individuals who are masters in the medium they work in to come into the space learn from it and also leave an impact on the other artists.They also get to teach workshops,take part in  mentorship programs and exhibit some of their work in our gallery.

Phillips Ezekwe

Our new resident artist is a sculptor from Nigeria known as Phillips Nzekwe who has managed to make sculptures that seem to jump out from the surface and capture the attention of the onlooker leaving him in great awe. Nzekwe has taken part in several solo and group exhibitions establishing a strong name for himself in the sculpting field.He is on a 6 week residency programme at Kuona Trust after which he is set to exhibit some of his works at the national museum.

Phillips will be teaching a sculpting class from the 16th to the 21st of September 2012.


Phillips Nzekwe working in his studio at Kuona trust

Chris Paul Daniels

Chris is a film and video maker who graduated from the Royal collage of Arts in 2010 with a masters in communication and art design .He is currently working with Unravel Film and will be at Kuona Trust for a 6 week residency programme.

For more info about Chris Daniel’s work visit his website http://www.chrispauldaniels.com

Kuona resident chris Paul Daniels

Kuona Trust resident chris Paul Daniels


Riziki by Thom Ogonga

Riziki was the title of Thom Ogonga’s exhibition held in November last year at the Alliance Francaise. The artist, who is currently based at the GoDown Arts Centre exhibited a variety of paintings and prints which portrayed the common day situations we witness or find ourselves in on a regular basis. Ogonga has managed  to keep his cohorts eager for more as his work continues to  taps into the fiber of relationships that make up the society.

Thom ogonga

Ordinary People Ordinary Politics

Michael Nyawanda’s exhibition ‘Ordinary People Ordinary Politics’ came at the perfect time with barely two months left before the general elections. The exhibition opened at the Nairobi national museum in November and came to an end on the 10th of December with a grand cocktail sponsored by Absolut Vodka.

Matatu in Movement by Dennis Muraguri

Dennis Muraguri has certainly established a name for himself with the matatu series that he has continued to develop over the last few months.With the matatu being the most commonly used means of transport in Kenya it has formed a large part of our culture as well as identity as a nation. Muraguri has  made a collection of prints, painting as well  as t shirts based on the same theme.

He recently collaborated with the Nishio Workshop Nairobi in an exhibition that sought to explore the world of the matatu mayhem. The exhibition is still on at the Le Rustique restaurant till the 15th of January 2012.Make sure you pass by and have a look at this awesome show.

Matatu project poster

 Mini art Sale comes to an ends

The Kuona Mini Art sale was on from the 15th of November to the 15th of December 2012. Various artwork was displayed in the Kuona gallery with prices ranging from Ksh 3000 to Ksh 15000.This was an initiative by the artists to make small pieces of art that were affordable to all while removing the pre conceived notion that art is only for the elite in society. We appreciate all those who came for the sale and also those who  bid online.

Kuona Trust min art sale

Shop update

New Member of Staff

Lynette Ngigi becomes the newest member to join the administrative team at Kuona Trust, joining us as the new sales executive in charge of the Kuona Art Shop. Having graduated from  Daystar University with a degree in communication, Lynette brings in a different dynamic to Kuona which focuses on customer service, hospitality and a new and vibrant outlook on the shop.

The shop has currently stocked up and you can now get all your art supplies directly from us including  acrylic paints, brushes, sketch books and canvas. Also in stock is the well sort after 2013 Kenya Art diary retailing at Ksh 1600/-. The KLA Festival (Kamplala Festival) 2012 catalogue is also out and those who missed out or would like to know more about the event can now do so through this catalogue.

Lynette W. Ngigi

Lynette W. Ngigi


1.Call for applications: de Appel Curatorial Programme 2013–2014

The programme  offers regular sessions with the tutorial team,various excursions (including a research trip to a destination outside of Western Europe), practice-related assignments, and the opportunity to meet with a large number of artists, curators, critics and other international professionals, through thematic seminars, studio visits and other encounters.Application deadline: January 14, 2013

Send applications digitally to: cp-application@deappel.nl. .  For further information please visit our website or contact:
Moosje Goosen (coordinator) or Nathalie Hartjes (coordinator)

2.Sanaa Bora Art Competition

Kenya Bankers Association and PAWA254 have come together to conduct an art competition dubbed “Sanaa Bora Art Competition”. The competition, which is run under the theme Positive Transformation Through Banking, seeks to engage caricaturists, cartoonists, sculpture artists, graffiti artists, sketch artists, photographers and painters to showcase their interpretation of the theme in an expressive and artistic manner. The competition which is divided into three categories:

1.    Youth (13years-18years) – Students enrolled full time in Primary School, high schools, colleges, community colleges, universities, trade schools, or professional schools (Design, Architecture, etc.) are eligible to enter.

2.    Amateurs – Individuals who earn part of their income from Art crafts including, sculptors, painters, sketch artist, multimedia artists.

3.    Professionals – Individuals who make their living from Art crafts including, sculptors, painters, sketch artist, multimedia artists.

The winner will walk away with Ksh 50,000; second finalist will take Ksh. 30,000 and Ksh.15,000 for the third to fifteenth placed finalist. The artworks of the winners will be exhibited at Kenya Bankers Association offices.

For more information visit the competition website: www.kba.co.ke/sanaabora

3.Fayoum Winter Academy 2013

The academy is an opportunity for artists to meet in Fayoum, Egypt,for six weeks of artistic and cultural exchange. 10 international and10 Egyptian artists will live, work and develop ideas together and receive supervision from instructors that are available during the academy. Courses include painting, printmaking, sculpture, video & filming and performance & installation art. This year also musicians and writers are encouraged to apply.Send applications to: winteracademy.ablamuseum@gmail.com

4. INSAKARTISTS 2013 ( Insaka International Artists Workshop)

Interested visual artists are hereby invited to submit applications to participate in the 6th INSAKA workshop to be held from the 20th of August to the 3rd of November 2013.

Application deadline: 1st February 2013.

Send applications to insakartists@gmail.com

5.GUEST PROJECTS AFRICA 2013: Calling ALL Artists with African Heritage!

Submissions are now open for one more month, closing on Monday January 7th 2013.

Send submissions to be selected and showcased as part of a series of cutting edge African Art forms, through a platform for African artists of all disciplines including spoken word, dance, fashion, architecture, visual arts, and more.


6. Illustration Kenya

This is a group that aims to promote illustration in Kenya and aims to provide a forum where illustrators of all kinds can share ideas.

They  are planning some exciting activities over the following months and ask that those interested would join them. Check out their facebook pabe on:


7. Miniprint Annual 2012

This is an opportunity for artists that aims at gathering and exhibiting contemporary art print works from all over the world and to contribute to the contacts and the exchange between artists, art lovers and collectors and to stimulate the research into paper, ink and other materials used in print making.

Those wishing to participate can send an email to : georgi.kolev@lessedra.com | georgi_lessedra@yahoo.com

Editorial note

Kuona editor

Quote of the month

The purpose of art is washing the dust of daily life off our souls.
~Pablo Picasso

Picture of the month

Some of the artists having fun on the beach after a hard day during one of the provisional workshop programmes in Watamu island off the Kenyan coast.

Kuona trust artists

Keep a look out for all the interesting events happening at Kuona trust this year and be part of each one. Have a fantastic 2013.

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