African art describes the modern and historical paintings, sculptures, installations and other visual culture from native or indigenous Africans and the African continent generally. The art world continually evolves by the day, and many African artists now use their talents to explore unique subject matters.
One of these artists is Ndumiso Nyoni of Zimbabwe, who uses geometric shapes and illustrations to celebrate African women through graphics designing.
“For a long time, Africa’s story has been told by others and not necessarily by Africans. I feel that being an artist is not only an opportunity to create beauty in images, it is also an opportunity to tell a beautiful story about our continent, our people, our cultures and our resilience” he says.
He had the privilege to attend The Design Indaba Emerging Creatives programme, an incubator that was started in 2005 in collaboration with the Department of Arts and Culture to nurture the county’s creative talent. The programme selects 40 young creatives across different design disciplines who exhibit their work during the annual Design Indaba Festival. Nyoni, who is a Design Indaba Emerging Creative from the class of 2010, says the programme helped him to expose his work to a global audience.
The graphic designer and illustrator has been able to use his creative talents in the beautiful illustrations of celebrated women, some of his works includes: A tribute to the late musician; Lebo Mathosa, Winnie Madikizela Mandela and even his take on an African Powerpuff Girls, Nomaqhawe (Mother of heroes), A tribute to African women, An illustration in honour of Ndebele artist Esther Mahlangu among a plethora of others.
Ndumiso Nyoni continues to use his unique style of illustration and fusing African themes with contemporary youth culture and trends to explore and represent African women through art, and indelibly showcasing the notions of feminity, beauty, race, power and tradition.