Arena for Contemporary African, African-American and Caribbean Art

Author: Matt Kayem

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Pamela Elizabeth Acaye Kerunen

Acaye E Pamela_Kakare_2021

There is no day that I will stand and pretend that I wove the mats or the bags, I mean, that would be a blatant lie but in terms of taking these pieces as additive spices to tell a new story that involves their work, yes, that makes me the artist.

Matt Kayem in conversation with Pamela Elizabeth Acaye Kerunen
Kakare, 2021

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Remmy Sserwadda


Remmy’s short coming however lies in his inability to zero down on a particular subject or themes that he could dance around to make a whole. He wobbles around multiple ideas that he fails to link into one.

Matt Kayem reviews the work of Remmy Sserwadda.
What’s Up, 2020

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Sungi Mlengeya


There is a multitude of ways on how to make entry into Mlengeya’s world. We could start with the women in the work, young and beautiful, very reflective of the artist’s locality, Uganda for having one of the youngest populations and East Africa for having some of the most good-looking ladies on the continent.

Matt Kayem on the black and white paintings of the Tanzanian artist Sungi Mlengeya
In the hems of our skirts, 2020

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Ronald Odur


So I think it’s very right for artists to engage in politics in their work just like they deal with other issues in their society, it’s still their mandate. At the end of the day, politics affects everyone, if there is a rise in sugar prices, I don’t know if artists don’t take tea or don’t use sugar. If there is insecurity in the country, the artists won’t even create, so we have to talk about these issues so that there is a change.

Matt Kayem interviews Ronald Odur

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Teesa Bahana, director of 32° East Ugandan Arts Trust


What does it mean to live a full life? What does it mean to have beauty in the world? What does it mean to live in a society that in many ways can be quite repressive as well? But we don’t have avenues to address that and art is one of those few places we do, although sometimes we have to self-censor and not be so obvious, but it’s an outlet. On an individual level, people being able to deal with their mental health, their emotions, all of these things, that’s one thing.

Matt Kayem in conversation with Teesa Bahana, director of 32° East Ugandan Arts Trust

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