NEWS: Kenya Arts Diary 2014 Launched

The fourth edition of the Kenya Arts Diary 2014 was officially launched
November 15th at  the home offices of the Heinrich Boell Foundation in
Nairobi. Unofficially the popular arts diary cum calendar went on sale at
major Nairobi book shops,  galleries and art centres this week.

“What makes the Kenya Arts Diary so special,” says glass artist Nani Croze,
the founder  mother of the Arts Diary, “is that it contains original
artwork by contemporary Kenyan  artists along with their bios, head shots
and contacts. That means anyone who wants to get  in touch directly with
the artists can easily do so.”

Croze also noted that ever since the first diary came out in 2011, the KAD
arts committee (all of whom are volunteers) chose to only include artists
who hadn’t been in the diary in previous years.

“This year we broke that precedent due to public demand for the inclusion
of both  established local artists and those who are relatively new to the
local art scene,” said Peta Meyer, the graphic designer responsible for
putting the diary together and ensuring that all the images presented are
impeccable sharp and crystal clear.

The photographers that provided most of the colourful images in the diary
are Qi Lin and Sylvia Gichia with several snaps provided by James Muriuki,
Charles Kamau, Anthony Wachira and Aernout Zevenbergen.

Among the more than 60 Kenyan artists featured in this year’s Diary are
Patrick Mukabi, Cyrus Ng’ang’a, Anthony Okello and Florence Wangui as well
as Beatrice Wanjiku, Uhuru B, Poonam Suryavanshi and Mike Kyalo, one of the
two winners of the first edition of KADRA or the Kenya Arts Diary [art]
Residency Award. The other winner was Ezra Joab of Kisumu.

A number of non-Kenyan East African artists are also in the diary,
including painters and sculptors from Sudan, Uganda, Tanzania, and
Ethiopia. Among are El Tayeb Dawelbeit and Ermias Ekube.

“Ever since we started the diary, i wanted to launch an art residency award
for up and coming Kenyan artists, and this year we finally made it happen,”
said Croze who had Joab working with her for a month at Kitengela Glass
Trust while Kyalo worked at Kuona Trust.

The art residency award includes one month working all expenses paid at the
Kitengela Glass Trust, including art materials and a stipend. At the end of
the residency, the artist will be given an exhibition of all the artwork
they produced during that one month’s time.

The Arts Diary sells in Kenya for ksh1850. It is also available to overseas
East African art lovers. Contact kenyaartsdiary@gmail.com for details.

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Author: Camara Dia Holloway

I am an art historian specializing in early twentieth century American art with particular focus on the history of photography, race and representation, and transatlantic modernist networks. I earned my PhD at Yale University in the History of Art Department. Besides my leadership role as the Founding Co-Director of the Association for Critical Race Art History (ACRAH), I am recognized for my expertise on African American Art, particularly African American Photography, and as a seasoned consultant for exhibitions, museum collections, and symposia/lectures planning.

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