Communication Archive


Page initiated        : 16 March 2011
Page last updated:

Purpose of page: provide a record of and access to general communications by the ZamArt Blog administrator to interested parties.

1.  Subject: Virtual Museum of Zambian Art

For attachment with initial virtual museum ideas: see blog post.

Date: 16/02/2011

Following my work as founding director of the Choma Museum and Crafts Centre it has been my wish to help establish a museum of Zambian art. To date we lack such a broadly defined museum. The Lechwe Trust presently is the only organisation working in this direction by its plans to built an art gallery at Lusaka based on its collection.

Present and short term prospects to establish a physical art museum in Zambia are dim, if not negligible.

An alternative might be to set up a virtual museum of modern Zambian visual art, a (fictive link!) or some name like that. The same site could also be a platform for communication and debate.

I have made an initial draft for such a project, to gauge interest and solicit suggestions for its development.

This draft is attached to this mail. You can, if you wish, react by e-mail or post a comment to the Blog where these initial idea's have been posted: 

This blog, still in development yet up in the air as of today, may initially serve as a  platform for presentation and discussion of matters relating to Zambian art, and in particular the development of a virtual museum of Zambian art.

I have addressed this mail to Mr Flexon Mizinga, in his capacity of Executive Secretary of the National Museums Board. In blank copies are those in the Zambian art field of whom I happen to have e-mail addresses; and that list is far from adequate for this purpose. I shall extend its circulation as I can and you may wish to do the same.

Bert Witkamp

2.  Subject: Artists’ profiles for Internet

Attachment: guidelines: see page: Art Players

Date: 25/02/2011

This message is firstly intended for artists who want to have an Internet presence. It also has been sent to other major parties that Make Art Work in Zambia.

This mail is addressed to the National Zambia Visual Arts Council (VAC), it being the national organisation of artists.
Addressees of this mail are in blank copies to avoid chances of undesirable use of addresses. Artists please pass this information on to your colleagues!!

ZamArt Blog was launched 16 February 2011. It is meant as an IT platform for those interested in the development of Zambian art. A key target is the establishment of a Virtual Museum of Modern Zambian Art, that is a museum which only exists on the Internet, as a website, and which incorporates  the immense communicative power that the Internet offers (See the Virtual Museum post at Zamart Blog)

Zamart Blog, in a way, is a runner up to a more developed Zambian art website, a virtual museum: a museum without walls. A blog, however, can be constructed such that it has features of a fully fledged website, for example by having stand-alone pages (which may have both internal links to posted entries and external links).

In assessing response to date I have the feeling that artists perhaps have not quite realized what good an art website could do for them. (See post on ZamArt Blog: 10 days after Launch). It also turned out that it is not so easy to get working e-mail addresses of artists, including prominent ones. And it also might be that many artists do not have easy Internet excess. (All reasons to get on with this idea!). The next step in ZamArt Blog development therefore specifically serves to enhance involvement by artists.

The ZamArt Blog has a page (under construction) tagged Art Players. Clicking on this tag (under pages in the blog's sidebar) gets you to a place where a list of categories of art players is displayed. Artists are one of the categories. It is by far the best if, when an artist appears on that list, a visitor to the site can click on to a page (in blog language called a post) where information about the artist can be accessed.
These individual profiles are to be subsumed under the label: Artists' Profiles. Clicking on the label Artists' Profiles to date gives you 1 published post. That post has the title Artists' Profile - Guidelines and is to help artists who want to put themselves on the Internet, and this Blog in particular, in the form of a dedicated page. You can download the page from ZamArt Blog or print out the attachment to this mail. Read it and submit if you wish......(mail to if you need help).

Once on this List of Artists it is easy for an artist to promote his art and put specific works of art for sale by the Art for Sale facility (under construction). That is the next step. Using the net to make a living.

Good luck with it,

Bert Witkamp