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Falling in love with Art

Publishing Date : 19 March, 2019

Author : AUBREY LUTE

The influence of social media coupled with innate talent has pushed Limkokwing University of Creative Technology student, 22 year old Lamorena Giri, to consider art as a career. The casual painter who relies most of pencil and paper is currently pursuing and degree in Industrial Design.


“Because of social media, I saw what artists were doing in the country and around the world and it sort of propelled me to start an art career but because I wasn’t sure it was worth the effort I enrolled at Limkokwing university for a degree course in Industrial design so that when my art fails I will have a backup plan,” reveals the enthusiastic Giri.


As a way of gauging his talent, Giri started posting some of his work on social media just to get exposure but the without much success. “I then joined an art organisation called Thapong visual arts centre and it helped me a lot because it gave me the exposure I needed with exhibitions and competitions. Also I met some of the country‘s greatest artists there and I learnt a lot from them and also gained a lot of experience from them.”


Giri sees himself as an “observer and a critic” whose images portray political profiles, culture, social injustice and artistic imagery among other themes. He details his journey with art: “I grew up in a small village called Natale just 25 km from Francistown in a family of 6. I started doing art at an early age when I started my primary. At the time it was not clear that I actually had the talent but as I proceeded it became clear so I started joining art competitions and school exhibitions.


When I got to junior school I chose art as an option and I learnt more about it therefore I fell in love with everything it entailed. Moving on I also chose it as an option in senior school but this time I was more focused on it because of so much competition and materials. When I finished my form 5, I didn’t abandon art, instead I started practising and trying new styles and techniques at home. By then I wasn’t sure if I wanted to do art as a career because I didn’t know it could actually be used to make a living.”


Giri has a sharp eye for manipulating proportion and scale. His skill allows him to render objects and figures full of life. He wants his art to go beyond borders, religion and tradition. One of the greatest artists he has met is Wilson Ngoni, an internationally acclaimed icon in painting. “He was kind enough to invite me and a handful of artists to his exhibition just to give us exposure and also to learn a few things about art especially painting. He also opted to give me free lessons on painting and other marketing skills.


I normally use pencil on paper to make my artworks or sometimes mixed media. Even though I was now improving, it wasn’t an easy task at all.” According to Giri, there are complications and “hard parts” in the business of doing art. He says one of the challenges he met was the market. “Most citizens don’t buy art and that on its own can make an artist to lose patience.” The fact that he is still schooling is a hindrance too, “I had to also make time for my art but it was never enough so I had to wake up early in the morning to create my artworks before going to school.”


In less than a year Giri will be completing his degree hence he intends to try working on art full time. “I aim to create more artworks and sell them for profit and in the end use the money for something that’s going to benefit society for example; building an art gallery where young aspiring artists will have a chance to showcase their work.”


Giri believes every artist has a role to play and one of those roles is to bring smiles to people with creativity in their work. “Art is not taken seriously in our country but I wish the situation could change so that people can learn to appreciate art like other countries that understand the role of art and its meaning to humanity at large.”

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