Mutuku likes to explore new approaches in his art practice, particularly the integration of organic and man-made materials with new digital and technological processes – for the artist “any medium can be art.” Interrogating ‘what can be art’ and ‘what art can be’ is central to Mutuku’s outlook. He says “if we stay stagnant in what has already been accepted in art then we come to a point where art can die…you need to ask yourself, are you really commenting on the time that you are living in.”
Author: Craig Halliday
Successful artworks have the ability to instruct or persuade the populace, to give new meanings or perspectives on issues, to provide new knowledge or to build ones capacity in empathy for a certain cause. The use of art can provide a setting in which people can discuss issues, form connections, and potentially take action. Just how much people take away from this experience is difficult to tell.
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Brian Omolo, Insurance Policy.
The work of M2 is sited (or at least plays a part) in the culture of the city; it is produced as a response to the urban and as a result contributes to producing city life. In this case, the future of art may well be urban. However, if this is to be the case, I would argue that art’s role relies in its ability to not only depict everyday life but to also disturb it – to give it new meaning and purpose. The work of M2 achieves this.
Craig Halliday on the Maasai Mbili Artists’ Collective.
The proliferation of many new spaces for art’s distribution particularly those of art-centres, provides liberation from commercial motives which can extend aesthetic freedom offered to artists and their practice. The networks that these multiple spaces create, and the environment of continuous questioning of ‘what is the purpose of art’ and ‘what can art achieve’ has been constructive for artists to continuously push boundaries. Additionally these new spaces create a platform for wider audiences to encounter art.
Craig Halliday on the contemporary visual art practice in Nairobi.
Cyrus Kabiru, from C-Stunners series.
Street art has been a means of education, awareness raising, increasing knowledge and moulding public attitudes; which encourage constructive behaviours that can lead to a peaceful co-existence, mutual respect, common goals and aspirations.