Different but One 15: The Makerere Masters

This year the joint faculty exhibition at Makerere University’s Fine Arts Department ”Different but One” celebrates its 15th year. Startjournal.org would like to honour 15 of the inspiring faculty artists by displaying 15 artworks from the current exhibition. Please enjoy and comment their work.

Written by Thomas Bjørnskau, Editor of startjournal.org

According to curator Rebeka Uziel, the idea to establish ”Different but One” was quick and spontaneous, but the implementation was complicated and quite challenging. Since the first exhibition fifteen years ago, the Makerere Art Gallery has kept on the tradition of combining the art of all faculty members around a common theme.

Uziel explains in the notes handed out at the anniversary exhibition that ”Different but One” has developed and improved over the years. The variety of the themes has been constantly widening, the variety of artistic professions has been increasing, and everyone is contributing with their very best works.

This year’s theme was simply ”Different but One 15”, where each artist has been asked to create works that convey feelings vis-à-vis the success of the exhibition to reach its 15th year.

Startjournal.org would like to use this opportunity to select and display 15 artworks from 15 faculty members. We know that these artists has taught, encouraged and inspired so many of the contemporary artists in Uganda.

These fifteen artworks and others can still be displayed in the gallery at the Makerere campus, but we hope this article will spread the works to a wider audience. We also sincerly hope our readers will comment the artworks at the bottom of this article.

1. Godfrey Banadda

Godfrey Banadda is one of the most respected names in contemporary African art. His work is unique, incorporating amazing characters and stories from culture and mythology into complex masterpieces.


2. Dr Lilian Nabulime

Dr Lilian Nabulime is a Ugandan sculptor, who creates bold, beautiful and challenging work that explores the politics of gender, race and disease in modern Africa. In the current edition of Startjournal.org, you can learn from Nabulime how to carve relief in wooden 2D-sculptures.


3. Dr Kizito Maria Kasule

Dr Kizito Marie Kasule is a senior lecturer and currently the Head of the Fine Arts Department at the School of Fine and Industrial Arts, Makerere University. In 2008 he opened the Nagenda International Academy of Art and Design a self-sustaining school for teenagers and young adults.


4. Dr Rose Kirumira Namubiru

Dr Rose Kirumira Namubira is one of the few Ugandan contemporary female artists specializing in the sculpture of the human form in wood normally with other media, clay and concrete. She is currently the Deputy Dean of MTSIFA. In the current edition of Startjournal.org, you can read this interview with Kirumira.


5. Dr George Kyeyune

Dr George Kyeyune is an associate professor at Makerere University art school and definitely Uganda’s leading expressionist, who has helped many local artists and viewers find themselves in his simple narratives about urban life in Kampala. Kyeyune was interviewed for Startjournal.org in Issue 005.


6. Annette Sebba

Annette Sebba is a photographer and lecturer for photography at the School of Industrial and Fine Arts. She has applied herself to study experiments with different photographic techniques and materials.


7. Dick Amanya

Amanya is a painter and a teacher for painting and weaving at MTSIFA.


8. Amanda Tumusiime

Amanda Tumusiime is a person who is definitely in tune with her community, some of her roles have been an interior decorator, lecturer, General Secretary for Uganda Artists Association, Director for AFORD (Art for Development) in Uganda, and Secretary-Uganda National Artists. Her abstract art pieces, which are resplendently beautiful, explore themes relating to women’s changing status.


9. Francis Xavier Ifee

Francis Xavier Ifee is a senior lecturer for painting and illustration at MTSIFA. He has exhibited his very detailed and colorful paintings in oil or water color in several art exhibitions national and international.


10. Esther Kavuma Ndagire

Esther Kavuma Ndagire is currently a Lecturer at Makerere University. As a Painter and Textile Designer, she draws her inspiration from Urban Kampala and Uganda’s rich cultural heritage. Her main subjects are women. Her works especially paintings usually portray challenges women face every day, some of which are personal experiences.


11. Donald Nantagya

Nantagya is a painter and a lecturer for weaving at the Art School.


12. Bruno Sserunkuuma and Edward Balaba

Bruno Sserunkuuma’s art is deeply rooted in his social and cultural traditions. He employs simple basic shapes derived from traditional pottery on which he applies strong and rich coloured motifs and figures. The themes for his decorations reveal the cultural and social life of Uganda’s traditional communities, especially the Baganda. To these he adds an intellectual artistic appeal that has captured international attention and acclaim. Edward Balaba is a lecturer in the ceramics department.


13. Kizito Fred Kakinda

Kizito Fred Kakinda is a professor of Art at Makerere University in Kampala. His work his appeared in numerous shows in Uganda as well as in Europe. His inspiration comes from the ancient cave painters and Egyptian artists who used the human figure and surrounding forms as symbols of spiritual, cultural expression and identity.


14. Dr Angelo Kakande

Dr Angelo Kakande has researched extensively on contemporary Ugandan art and the connection to politics. He is currently the Head of the Department of Design at MTSIFA.


15. Dr Venny Nakazibwe

Venny Nakazibwe is a designer and art historian, currently a lecturer and Dean of the Margaret Trowell School of Industrial and Fine Arts, Makerere University in Uganda. She holds a Masters degree in Textile Design and a PhD in African Art History. Nakazibwe is one of the female artists being interviewed for this article in issue 007 of Startjournal.org.