Stary Mwaba follows a socio-political starting point in his painting as well as his installation-like works, generating links between the current socio-economic situation in Zambia, his country of origin, and historical events.
His installation in Künstlerhaus Bethanien deals with an event in Zambian history that was significant in a utopian as well as an historical sense: at the beginning of the 1960s, when the former British colony became independent and the state of Zambia was founded, teacher and visionary Makuka Nkoloso set up a space flight programme that was both ambitious and – in face of lacking technology and limited financial means – belittled as completely crazy by the former colonial rulers in particular. Besides drawings, sketches and paintings based on materials in the Zambian national archives, Stary Mwaba is showing the sculpture DKALO-1 (2015), which reflects Nkoloso’s model of a type of space capsule: it is a large-scale balloon encased in typical bright-patterned, local materials.
Another group of works belongs to the project Chinese Cabbage, in which the artist sheds light on the impact of the current economic colonisation of Zambia by China and its handling of the local copper, cobalt and manganese resources. Mwaba uses his works to develop individual narrative forms of history, real and fictive future scenarios, and to exhibit their visible and invisible traces.
Stary Mwaba lives and works in Lusaka, Zambia.
He is currently holding a fellowship from the KfW Stiftung, Frankfurt a. M. in the context of our International Studio Programme.
06.03. – 29.03.2015
Tue - Sun: 2 - 7pm
Porträt Stary Mwaba