Kudzanai Chiurai was born in Zimbabwe in 1981. He was the first black student to graduate with a BA Fine Art from the University of Pretoria. Born one year after Zimbawe’s emergence from white-ruled Rhodesia – Chiurai’s early work focused on the political, economic and social strife in his homeland.
He started his career painting landscapes and portraits but his activism soon started appearing in his work. Chiurai was exiled from Zimbabwe after producing an unflattering portrait of the country’s president, Robert Mugabe.
His work tell us about political and social themes, like xenophiobia and corruption. His technique is a mix of digital photography, editing, printing, painting and videos.
He creates a new iconography in which mixed-media coexist in a graphic language clear and crude at the same time. For many people Kudzanai Chiurai is more than an artist, he’s considered an activist, an poet and a philosopher.
Kudzanai Chiurai has been nominated for the 2014 Discovery Award at Rencontres d’Arles by Azu Nwagbogu, founder and director of the African Artist’s Foundation in Lagos, Nigeria. Chiurai’s work will be exhibited along with works by the nine other nominees at the Parc des Ateliers in Arles from 7 – 21 September 2014.
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