Art

Open house lures scores of art shoppers

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Brush tu artists and friends at their gallery in Nairobi’s Buruburu. FILE PHOTO | NMG

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Summary

  • Among the other Brush tu artists who have been painting up a storm is Sebawali Sio who brought several of her latest glass-on-glass paintings to the open house.
  • There are lots of red 'sold' stickers on the artworks but still, there are a few visible price tags.
  • Peteros Ndunde is among the artists whose paintings have been sold out.

Even during a pandemic, artists from Brush tu Art Collective, a gallery based in Nairobi’s Buruburu, were willing to hold an open house filled with artworks.

Boniface Maina, one of the co-founders of the Collective (with Michael Musyoka and David Thuku) presented four paintings, each one placing Maina’s avatar in spaces where Covid-19 has not reached and life is relaxed. His only concern is that two of his paintings are entitled ‘Fantasy’, yet most Kenyans know the pandemic is neither a fantasy nor a hoax.

Among the other Brush tu artists who have been painting up a storm is Sebawali Sio who brought several of her latest glass-on-glass paintings to the open house.

“We’re likely to keep the exhibition open for another week or two since many people have said they want to see our work but don't want to be around crowds,” Sebawali tells BDLife.

There are lots of red 'sold' stickers on the artworks but still, there are a few visible price tags.

Peteros Ndunde is among the artists whose paintings have been sold out. However, he plans to bring more new paintings early next week to replace those already sold.

But while the buyers of Peteros' works agreed to leave their art at the studio for others to see the subtle new developments in his style, Lincoln Mwangi’s clients had other plans. They bought nearly all the young painter’s paintings soon after the doors opened for the artist's weekend event, leaving just one of his paintings and a long bare wall.

One of Brush tu regulars who did not disappoint was Abdul Kiprop. He had a whole wall-like panel filled with prints made with the printing press that the artist made from scratch. Having come to Brush tu to become a painter, Abdul attended several print workshops given through Brush tu by master printers like Peterson Kamwathi and Thom Ogonga.

Other artists

He was hooked on the art of printmaking after that. But as he was taught on other people’s presses, he realised he had no choice but to make his own, which he did. Now it's available for use by all the Brush tu artists and friends who want to experiment with printing.

Brush tu hosts interns from various art institutions, both local and European. Most recently, photographer and art blogger Emmaus Kimani took part in a German cultural exchange programme that took him to Berlin initially for three months.

“But then, when the pandemic hit, I had to remain in Germany another four months,” says Emmaus who also had a chance to visit Hamburg where he met up with fellow Kenyan artist, Nicholas ‘Nicomambo’ Odhiambo who is currently studying fine art at the university.

Emmaus also had a display table set up at Brush tu where the public could view an abundance of his photographs printed as postcards and computer mouse pads.

This intrepid cameraman takes photos wherever he goes, both locally and overseas. In Germany, he was big on shooting skyscapes and other artful images.

Other Brush tu artists who have their works on display included sculptor Boniface Kimani, Munene Kariuki, newcomer Husna Nyathira Ismail, Waweru Gichuhi and Moira Bushkimani whose paper-cut paintings were in high demand even without price tags on them.