By Tafadzwa Muranganwa
Visual artistes across genres will have chance to feature in a climate justice exhibition to be hosted by Nhaka Gallery (formerly Delta) from 24 June to the 10th of August.
Speaking at press conference recently, Nhaka Gallery director Hellen Matsvisi said they are targeting upcoming visual artistes from the country’s 10 provinces to showcase their works that speak on climate justice.
“The forthcoming exhibition is open to all young artistes from across the country who wish to convey their messages on climate justice,”addressed Matsvisi.
She further explained what motivated the exhibition which will run under the theme ‘Climate Justice and Renewable Resources Solutions ‘.
“The world is faced with a climate crisis and Zimbabwe is no exception. Information and knowledge on the global phenomenon need to be packaged so that it can reach far, so art can be able to relay that message better ,” she added.
The gallery has partnered the Zimbabwe United Nations Associations (ZUNA) to conduct the exhibition.
ZUNA secretary general Kudakwashe Mushonga described the partnership as relevant as it speaks to the desires of young people to be involved in critical discourse .
“Our organisation is youth-oriented and as such we are delighted to be part of this exhibition. Climate justice is often viewed elitist and youths are usually segregated in these keys conversations,” revealed Mushonga.
According to ZUNA’s SDGs and environment officer Delight Bhumira using art to seek climate change helps in simplifying the message such that communities can be able relate.
“There is so much information on climate change but most of it is complex. To enable communities to understand this better artistes have a role to simplify it through poems and drama e.t.c.
“Our organization has been working with high schools and tertiary institutions in conscientising about the environment and climate change. We are considering to extend the programme to primary schools to ‘catch them young’,” Bhumira said.
One of the selected curators , Evans Tinashe Mutenga rallied visual artistes to be inspired with the effects of climate change in communities they are living to come up with art pieces.
” There is a lot from our communities which you can draw your inspiration from. For examples people are settling on wetlands and the result has been the worsening water crisis.
” It is from these everyday happenings that can inspire your works on climate justice,”challenged Mutenga.
Chipochangu Dzimano is excited to showcase some of her art pieces that uses plastic bottles and Kwarimba.
” I am proud to be part of this exhibition where you will be able to see some of works using plastic bottles. I have also been making earrings using Kwarimba pods from Musasa tree . This has the potential of becoming a source of income for rural women whom will supply me with these, “she said.
The gallery was owned by Derek Huggins and his wife and Helen Lieros who died in 2021. Since 1975 it has nurtured fine artistes including Portia Zvavahera whose artwork titled ”Vese Vakandibata” was sold US$$280 000 at an auction in New York. While it has rebranded, its director Hellen Matsvisi has vowed to continue with its legacy.