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About the Reception
2017 Opening Reception
Meet friends met for an afternoon of art, culture and ambiance, taking in the beauty of Shona stone sculpture.
Collector and exhibition curator, Jeff Brown, addressed guests, describing the creative processes of sculpting stone, as practiced by the Shona people. Following his presentation, Brown joined browsing guests, pointing out hidden features in a stone, or sharing a personal anecdote about one of the sculptors.
THE HISTORY OF SHONA CARVING
Shona people began carving stones more than 2,000 years ago.
It has been documented that the Shona people began carving stones more than 2000 years ago. Originally, the Shona people would carve to express both personal and spiritual beliefs. Shona sculptures demonstrate the unity between two worlds, the physical and the spiritual. These incredible stone carvers hold firm to the belief that every stone and every thing has a life spirit. It is that “life spirit” that influences what sculpture that stone will become and the job of the artist is to “release the spirit from the stone”.
The Tengenenge Arts Community – Zimbabwe
Several of our featured artists were in one way or another, affiliated with the Tengenenge Arts Community. This sculpting community was founded in 1966, as sanctions were put into effect on selling tobacco. See a brief video about this community by clicking on the image to the left.
The pieces in this exhibit were all formed from Zimbabwean Master Carvers – with the exception of Fanizani Akuda, who is a native son of Zambia. Many of the featured artists are self-taught, although some have learned through the generations. Shona stone sculptures have become renown around the world for both their artistic impression, as well as the distinct beauty of the stone. It is our pleasure to showcase the extraordinary carvings of: Edward Chiwawa, Richard Mupumha, Fanizani Akuda, Sylvester Mubayi and Locardia Ndandarika.
“One of Zimbabwe’s finest carvers.”
Born in 1945, Locardia Ndandarika developed a fondness for working with her hands, modeling clay as a child. Learn more about her journey from assisting her husband, to her emergence as one of Zimbabwe’s finest carvers.
“Among the top 10 sculptors of the 20th Century.”
Mentioned among the top 10 sculptors of the 20th Century in The Guardian in 1991, Sylvester Mubayi creates beautiful and compelling sculptures. Experience his culture and beliefs thru the story he creates in stone.
“Symbolism features greatly in Chiwawa’s work…”
Often described as a jovial and light-hearted man, Edward Chiwawa is known primarily for his minimalistic face sculptures. Symbolism features greatly in Chiwawa’s work – life and death, night and day. His art is stunning in it’s simplicity.
“Known for sculpting smiling figures.”
Fanizani Akuda is known for sculpting smiling figures and happy families. He has earned accolades world-wide, and exhibited in the most prestigious museums. Recognized for sculpting his trademark slit eyes and whistling lips, one cannot help but feel the joy emanating from his sculptures.
“My forefathers’ spirits…were highly talented artists.”
“I am possessed by my forefathers’ spirits, who were highly talented artists…I feel very proud developing and continuing with the art tradition my forefathers passed on to me…this is part of our heritage.”