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Arena for Contemporary African, African-American and Caribbean Art

Author: Matt Kayem

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Kampala Art Biennale 2020 online

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The theme – Get Up Stand Up – is so strong and would have been explored to its depth. Owing to the fact that the host country Uganda is going through a political conundrum with a president who’s been leading for the last 35 years, suffocating a lot of freedoms, manipulating state institutions to his favor and spearheading a shameless corrupt government. It was timely and on spot to have such a theme for such a biennale where we should have seen Ugandan artists tackle the appalling political situation in their country.

Matt Kayem on the Kampala Art Biennale
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Speak Life: An Online Exhibition featuring Canon Rumanzi, Juliano Trabou, & Anthony Jermaine

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What a timely exhibition is all I can say. And how important to see artists who are conscious of their surroundings and most importantly choosing to speak out about what they see and experience around them.

Matt Kayem on the online exhibition Speak Life
Visual: Anthony Jermaine

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Waswad: Down in Napak

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I’m not trying to be ‘African’. I’m not trying to prove anything. If you want to doubt if it’s African, look at the material the art is made of and look at the person making it. So I’m using local materials and the concepts I put across are indigenous to this place. I actually hate the title ‘African art’ because titles are for people who want to gain from this.

Matt Kayem interviews Waswad
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Richard Atugonza and Ronald Odur

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The two artists seem to be working differently and hitting at two opposite ends of an aesthetic but they are together mainly because they work with recycled material. They give a chance and a new life to what would have destroyed our environment if it was just thrown around and not put into good use like they have. Perhaps there work becomes more important now that it hinges unto our living and welfare as humans today.

Matt Kayem about the duo-show of Richard Atugonza and Ronald Odur.

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Collage Broadly Defined, groupshow in Afriart, Kampala

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Georges Braque and Pablo Picasso who gave the medium its first kick would stare in awe if they visited Afriart gallery today as each of these young artists demonstrates a deep understanding of how to ‘cut and paste’ which form the core of the discipline

Matt Kayem on the groupshow Collage Broadly Defined in Kampala
Gael Maski, Personal Tansition Series, 2019

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