12 December, 2012

SHAZULA IN PROCESS - Opening Exhibition

The exhibition “Processes” opened 9 December 2012 at Shazula Cultural Forum. Shazula, owned and managed by artist Peter Gustavus and his wife Namo, offers acculturation courses and promotes cultural tourism. The exhibition successfully inaugurated the use of the facility as an art gallery.

The multi-cultural character of Shazula is reflected in the nationalities and backgrounds of the participating artists. Peter himself originates from Germany, so does Rosa Theresa Harter; Patrick and Esnart Mweemba are Zambians of the Southern Province; Bert Witkamp was born in the Netherlands and Barbara Lechner-Chileshe is Austrian. 

Andrew Mulenga, art journalist of The Post, officiating at the opening of the  exhibition.

The work on display, united by the common theme “processes,” also shows a considerable variety. Patrick Mweemba shows prints about printmaking, Peter Gustavus has on display what could be called vivid narrative imagery, Bert Witkamp shows older figurative oil paintings and recent geometric design  on pattern generation; Esnart Han’goma Mweembe shows figurative graphic art and a mixed media painting, and Barbara Lechner displays both narrative and non-figurative imagery. A pleasant outcome of this diversity is that visitors will always find something of their liking and something they dislike, adding interest to the visit and giving them something to talk about.

Photo 2. Seeds of Thought by Peter Gustavus

Discussion of matters of public interest is one of Peter’s predilections – he believes that exhibitions have missions. That believe is physically demonstrated by his “Seeds of Thought” – a collection of stimulating or provoking statements written on the pods of the flamboyant.

Barbara manages and supports Malaikha, a school for handicapped children. The work of one of her deaf pupils, Orment, is on display showing the discovery of image making by a novice. Barbara also did most of the work of getting a very nice and informative catalog published. 

Photo 3. Opening of the exhibition.

The opening itself was a pleasant and amiable affair; not only were the pictures good, so was the food, the drinks and the company. And last but not least, with some surprisingly good sales!

Shazula, to my knowledge, is the third Art Gallery of Southern Province. The Choma Museum Art Gallery is the oldest (established in 1993). Agnes and Lawrence Yombwe run a fine gallery named Wayi Wayi in Livingstone. Shazula, located off road between Monze and Mazabuka, is the latest. It is worth a visit!