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Renowned visual artist Hermit Muyambo will focus on live quick portraiture at this year’s edition of Harare International Festival of Arts which is now a few weeks away.

Muyambo, who is a regular at the festival, said this in an interview with The Herald Entertainment during his solo exhibition in Bindura last weekend.

The exhibition saw Muyambo exhibiting different portraits from presidents to prominent figures.

“I am happy that this year I will again take part at HIFA. I am going to change from the usual practice whereby people bring their pictures and portraits at the festival and I take them home for drawing. I will be doing quick portraiture sketches at a fee and hope my customers will like the idea,” he said.

Muyambo said will also host workshop at the festival.

“I will do live demonstrations and skill impartations to the locals including children whom I will give an opportunity to do some sketches at my stand. I will be providing some of the materials and due to time constraints the workshops will be for 30 minutes only,” he said.

He cited decline of appreciation on portraitures by the public as the biggest challenge for aspiring artists.

“There has been a small decline with regards to portraiture clientele, though I am doing well. Some regard this as a white man’s hobby yet we all want pictures in our homes. As artists we also lack facilities as the some of old spaces where we used to do our job are now occupied by others and can’t accommodate us. One thing people tend to forget is that art is a job and if taken seriously can sustain livelihoods,” said Muyambo.

He thanks HIFA for the exposure saying it has been a wonderful platform for networking:

“I have met other artists from different places that I have worked together with, learning from them.”

The talented painter hopes to represent Zimbabwe in August this year at the Piccasso Art Festival in Europe.

“I have applied for the PAF to represent Zimbabwe in Europe and am waiting for the response. This is not my first time taking part in such festivals as I have hosted solo exhibitions in Germany, South Africa, Spain and UK. I only focus on live portraits although I can draw anything. I have done another President Mugabe portrait that I expect to deliver to him in Victoria Falls during the 21st February Movement celebrations,” he said.

He is a self-taught artist and turned this from being a hobby to a professional job in 2008.

Source : The Herald

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