Wednesday, 19 Jun 2024
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Acting the role of Chopin: Kiggundu’s piano performance

“In moving an entire audience to the central feeling of the piece, the pianist communicates humanity more than anything else, transcending both time and space to speak to the eternal awareness in each person. Long after the show has ended, the moment that occurred is burned into memory as a thing of utmost meaning.” Serubiri Moses portrays Kiggundu Musoke before and during a piano performance.

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Photo of Michael Ouma. Taken from his Myspace-site.

Acoustic moments: A portrait of Michael Ouma

A talented and multidimensional artist in his own right, Michael Ouma has been there and done that and lived to play the tune. His insight into music is almost legendary and gives one the sense that he plays from a totally otherworldly place compared to his peers. His passion for music and his desire to see the day when Uganda’s music and its instruments are recognized globally fuel his daily pursuit to become better at what he does.

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(c) Digital art by Eria Sane Nsubuga, 2011.

Sane: Artists should put their creative minds into Ugandan culture

Ugandan artists must be passionate students of Ugandan tribal cultural norms and values, artifacts, material culture, and oral history if they are to win back their much needed relevance. Artists should go ‘native’, then perhaps it would be more interesting for the local language newspapers to write about visual arts. Sane sums up some discussion points after an Art Forum at Goethe Zentrum.

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Still image from video, courtesy of Cyril Ducottet & Bayimba Cultural Foundation

Do we really care about our Arts and Culture? Ugandans speak out at their 2nd national conference

In May newly elected parliamentarians were sworn in amidst colourful cultural performances from all over Uganda. How significant that across the road from them, the theme “We don’t care about Ugandan arts and culture” was discussed at the 2nd Annual Conference on Arts and Culture. Several speakers tried to prove the audience that we do need to care. But the question arises; will art ever be put on the agenda of politicians if we merely consider it to be part of our every day life as the speakers illustrated. And what are the underlying challenges?

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Isha's Hidden Treasures in broad daylight

Poetry in Session: An intellectual revival in Kampala

In the midst of the proliferation of entertainment joints extolling the virtues of “baby take off your clothes’’ music, a remarkable revolution of poetry is taking place, in the Kampala suburb of Kira Road, at a gallery called Isha’s Hidden Treasures. What started last November with an audience of 15 people has now turned into a much-anticipated meeting of minds. Achola Rosario reviews the event.

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How to Curate Your Own Art Exhibit

Curation can be described as the sorting and presentation of work/art for presentation to an audience. Its role is pivotal to the reception of work from the artist or gallery to the target audience, and it plays a major role in the success or failure of selling work. Photographer Roshan Karmali gives you some key ideas if you want to curate your own artwork.

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David Oduki at ‘Let Us Share Beauty’: “Adapt exhibitions to global trends”

David Oduki, the co-founder of Royal African Foundation, attended the opening of the exhibition “Let Us Share Beauty” in Utrecht, the Netherlands. “Local galleries in Uganda should be aware of global trends and adapt exhibitions to those trends. They also should promote the likes of Collin Sekajugo and explain their recycling message to the local public,” David Oduki tells Startjournal.

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Wasswa Donald: I Speak Elephanish

Whether as a proprietor of @rt Punch Studios, or as a painter, or sculptor, or clothing designer, or as a teacher, Wasswa Donald’s full-bore involvement in the Uganda art scene as one of Uganda’s top contemporary artists frequently earns praise, but it’s his wildlife paintings that provoke the most discussion.

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"Women Empowerment" by Katerega Saul.

Art the mirror of our politics

The students of Nagenda International Academy of Art and Design recently held an exhibition entitled ”Art the mirror of our politics” at the Makerere Art Gallery. What makes their work different and unique is that it has been produced and exhibited in the very same period when election exercises are still going on at the lower levels and people’s memories on these elections are still fresh in their mind.

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The new dawn of the MishMash Experience

The Uganda art scene is increasingly getting more exciting and rather competitive with each passing month. After the successful launch of the Signature art exhibition – with its pomp and glamour – last year at the Serena Hotel, another artistic event, MishMash, has debuted on the art scene making art lovers and artists again very optimistic about art in Uganda.

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From the Street theatre performance in Jinja, March 2011.

Street theatre is taking the floor in Uganda

What is “Street theatre” really all about? This writer grossed in wonder when hearing the phrase Street theatre performance. Is it like an acrobats show, or a magician act? Or a kind of voodoo done in public? How wrong one can be! The performance is an artistic potpourri that evokes important issues in our society. The first Street theatre performance was held on March 26th 2011, at the Bayimba Regional Festival of the Arts in Jinja. From April till September; there will be shows in Arua, Gulu, Mbarara, Mbale and Kampala.

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Group studios in Uganda: The Challenges of a Collective

In 2007, when Start Magazine covered the story of Mona Studio, there was an air of great expectations for the cause of young artists working together. It was a case of two charismatic artists slowly but surely etching their way into an indifferent community in Kamwokya, a suburb of Kampala city. Edison Mugalu and Anwar Nakibinge were forging an art collective to make an impact on the local community. And they almost pulled it off, but for the ignorance of one major factor at play in any alliance; the divergence of vested interests.

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Beyond the Controversy

Testament to the strength and innovation of Uganda’s artistic community, the Controversial Art Exhibition at Kampala’s Afriart Gallery sought to challenge traditional perceptions of African art. Henry Mzili Mujunga’s catalogue text, Finding the Controversy, offers an insight into the premises of this exhibition. Here he boldly exclaims that the work of “the true heroes of Ugandan art” could be found in this small, yet adventurous display. And he was right.

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Edison Mugalu paints from his home studio in Kireka

The Art of Self-making: An interview with Edison Mugalu

He has just finished the works for a new exhibition. This time he depicts the old walls, the street corners and narrow alleys of Zanzibar’s Stone Town. He is giving us an impression of the past days, and every brushstroke intends to teach us more about where we came from. Editor Thomas Bjørnskau talks to Edison Mugalu about his journey to become one of Uganda’s best-selling visual artists.

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Material Evolution: Ugandan Bark Cloth exhibition at the University of North Texas

The exhibition ‘Material Evolution: Ugandan Bark Cloth’ at the University of North Texas featured international artists and designers who create artistic works and everyday functional items from bark cloth, focusing on creating sustainable and environmentally friendly design solutions from a centuries-old process. Startjournal talks with curator Lesli Robertson.

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