Public urged to value artworks

NATIONAL Gallery of Zimbabwe (NGZ) chief curator Raphael Chikukwa has urged Zimbabweans to value artists’ works after discovering that paintings done by renowned artists were being used as curtains at Tengenenge Arts Centre.

BY TAFADZWA KACHIKO

Chikukwa, who toured Tengenenge with a team that included Netherlands ambassador Barbara van Hellemond, recently told people at the opening of Meeting of Minds exhibition at NGZ in Harare that they had to rescue paintings used as curtains.

“Last week I and the ambassador had a trip to Tengenenge and we saw paintings by Paulo Meza, Morgan Jamu, Janet and Bharankinya being used as curtains. We then agreed with Tengenenge to bring them real curtains and rescue these artworks,” he said.

Speaking to NewsDay Life & Style on the sidelines of the event, Chikukwa appealed to the public to have an appreciation of artists and their work.

“This says a lot. There is need to value our own art and artists. They’re appreciated outside Zimbabwe. As much as they are appreciated there, we need to appreciate them here. We can only appreciate them by acquiring the artworks, dress up our offices, homes and government offices. That would really mean a lot,” he said.

Mondriaan Fund (Nertherlands) director Birgit Donker said art was also taken for granted by some people in Netherlands and they had been working on increasing appreciation of art.

“People love art and they go to museums a lot, but sometimes they’re hesitant to invest in it so we are also trying to show them the importance of investing in the sector because it is really an important part of civilisation. We are making people realise how important art is for their daily lives,” she said.

The exhibition featured Netherlands alumni Patrick Makumbe, Admire Kamudzengerere, Gareth Nyandoro, Option Nyahunzvi and Terence Musekiwa) as well Tengenenge artists including Josiah Manzi and Sylvester Mubayi.