IN a recent interview Keith Zenda shared his artistic journey saying, “painting started by drawing of cartoons in books and boards in 1997 when he was doing grade 6”. He realized this talent in 2001, after devoting himself to the End Times Message under Pastor Martin Gumbura.
Painting and drawing like music pervade and permeates all areas of social, public and private issues. Painting perpetuates culture since it includes everything that occurs in society; that is customs, beliefs, values, and artifacts that can be handed down from one generation to another.
A staunch painter, Zenda revealed that he is a breadwinner and is the firstborn out of a family of six. He started selling his paintings in 2003 and people highly appreciate his works even beyond borders.
“I got this talent from God’s assurance that say’s: “I will bless the work of your hands and I trust that with God everything is possible”, says Keith.
“Painting has become a full-time business and the market is good in Botswana, Mozambique and I am heading to South Africa where there is a good opportunity for big galleries”.
“Last week I was in South Africa, Cape Town for a gallery and they wanted me to sign a contract. One of my associates restrained me from doing that since this was to throw me to servitude and South Africans are taking advantage of Zimbabweans desperations”, he added.
Keith says he once sealed a deal with Richard Rains which flopped because of economic constraints. Most people appreciate arts especially painting but do not have enough resources to purchase equipment. He also added that in Zimbabwe arts are not and are not getting any support from the government.
He revealed that the government should actually allocate budget for arts, just like the farming sector. Keith has it that arts can bring vast foreign currency in the country.
Artists of different genres strongly requested the National Arts Council to assist them by providing a platform that will enable them to showcase their artistic prowess to the public.
“Lack of unity among artists and distancing themselves from the National Arts Council of Zimbabwe (NACZ) is causing untold damage among the artist. Like in Bulawayo where artists are united, Gweru should also do the same”, says Keith.
Zenda further requested the NACZ to help in enabling them to acquire money for loans from the banks to support their works.
The festive season for 2009 has left the arts industry bleeding, as most artists flee to neighboring countries. Most artists have relocated to South Africa and Botswana. Gweru is a melting pot of arts just like Bulawayo.
Bulawayo is rich in arts just like the South African counterparts in the Zulu province. In Zimbabwe, they are no other place that is rich in arts and culture like Bulawayo. The culture of Ndebele s automatically makes its people be extra-ordinary in arts activities
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