Stretching the canvas between the UK & Africa!
The Mission: to showcase some of the immense talent in Africa and create a (new)
profitable route for people to earn a living using skills & resources readily available to them.
Creativity is free; we plan to position art as a profession and support artists so they can succeed
by pursuing it. Not every child will excel or even be interested in traditional subjects. Their
education shouldn't just be limited to those subjects, and we need to focus on providing
opportunities for them to break the cycle of poverty regardless of whether that's through
academia, sport or arts. This is about increasing options and providing more opportunities.
"Overcoming poverty is not a gesture of charity. It is the protection of a fundamental human
right, the right to dignity and a decent life." Nelson Mandela
There's a rich tapestry of stories of Africa captured in carvings, on canvas or in sculptures by under
exposed or under nurtured artists; too few of these stories and storytellers are known. This project will facilitate connections that bring together artists (established and emerging in Africa and the UK), potential buyers, learning institutions and diverse audiences. These connections will create a collaborative, mutually beneficial entrepreneurial ecosystem designed to support sustainable income generation, exchange of ideas and cultural awareness across regions.
1. Showcase artists who can compete on world stages by maximising exposure to their art and their stories;
2. Provide an income generation stream for artists and equip them with the knowhow to manage their talent for business benefit;
3. Build art education into the curriculum in schools & establish its credentials as a career option, working with grassroots education charities, the ministry of education, schools, parent & teacher associations, arts councils etc. ;
4. Provide a forum/space for students to learn from and be inspired by artists and tutors through artist profiles, seminars and workshops conducted virtually and in person in partnership with art institutions e.g. inspire Africa's answer to Banksy;
5. Connect businesses/galleries/learning institutions etc. (especially those with UK and Africa presence) to artists and enable a knowledge and skills exchange e.g. digital skills sessions offered through consultancy; business modelling, accounting etc.
How you can get involved:
1. Artists: If you're interested in being involved in any of the ways outlined above, please get in touch.
2. Bring us into your organisation: If your business would like to host an exhibition or simply add some colour and diversity to an upcoming event, we can work with you to organise a theme and create an educational and culturally stimulating experience for your colleagues and clients.
3. Shop and/or Donate! Your money is always welcome so please either buy some of the incredible pieces in the art store or donate towards the project.
July 2017 - Exhibition: 'A trip around Africa' . The African and Caribbean Network at he European Bank of Reconstruction and development invited us to help them take guests and colleagues around Africa through their senses of touch, taste, sight, sound and smell. We delivered an exhibition featuring upcoming artists from South and Eastern Africa, covering Tanzania, Malawi, Mozambique and Zimbabwe. The event also featured live musicians, Wuntanara, representing Guinea in West Africa. Food fro North Africa completed the trip. The evening included a fantastic session by PwC, exploring the subject of race through their #ColourBrave initiative. Dara Kirton from PwC was the guest during a powerful and riveting panel discussion which was well received by everyone there.
November 2016 - Exhibition: 'Unbreakable: The changing face of Africa's struggles & strengths'. As part of their Black History Month 2016 celebrations, the European Bank of Reconstruction and development invited us to hold an exhibition at their London Headquarters from 14-18 November. The reception on 17 November featured a presentation on the Lost Kingdoms of Africa by well renowned art historian, Dr Gus Casely-Hayford.
Ishumael Mhike, Zimbabwe. Used stone and wood for sculptures before a brutal robbery left him paralysed. He now recycles cans and other light scrap metal to make his art.