Photography and visual arts are products of the creative world.
But, save for a few festivals and platforms which have given the two artistic fields ground in the country, it is not often that organisers bring photographers and visual artists together.
And, observing that there is a gap, Jacaranda Cultural Centre (JCC) and Maison de la France in Blantyre on Saturday hosted an exhibition featuring photography and visual arts.
The exhibition, featuring a photography project titled ‘Humans of Malawi’ by Malumbo Simwaka and visual artworks by Prudence Chivasa, attracted an impressive audience.
JCC and Maison de la France Deputy Director, Daisy Belfield, said they were excited with the turnout during the exhibition.
“We didn’t know what to expect but we are impressed with the turnout and that just shows that people are in love with photography and visual arts. Again, if you look at the topics covered, the photographs are telling stories of Malawi and, likewise, visual arts,” Belfield said.
She described ‘Humans of Malawi’ as one of the exciting photography projects that presents piercing portraits, accompanied by narratives.
Simwaka, of Amaru Photography, said it was his first time to hold an exhibition and that, with the support received, he has been motivated.
“I am motivated and this is just the beginning. I will do more. I am happy to tell different stories using photographs and this shows that a picture tells a thousand words,” he said.
Through his photographs, Simwaka addresses broad contemporary social issues such as education, child marriage and economic disparity – but his portraits remain personal and intimate.
And, for Chivasa, she has a unique approach to acrylics, aligning unexpected colours and shapes to create spectacular forms.
Through her works as a female artist, she showed that women can also excel in visual arts.
“All I can say is that I am happy with the support. I am still learning and making strides but I will surely get there,” Chivasa said.
Her main artwork features a Lizard and the artwork is titled ‘How the Lizard Got its Colour’.
Musician Agorosso performed during the exhibition, which also saw launch of the revamped children’s library, which has expanded to include French and English books.
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