Tawanda Takura Zimbabwe
Zimbabwean visual artist Tawanda Takura works with used objects to create sculptures that reflect issues of socio-political well-being, identity, spirituality and the status quo. Fascinated by the journeys, histories and characters carried through worn objects such as old shoes and belts, Takura brings new meaning to the old adage of walking a mile in someone else’s shoes. His works implore the viewer to embody that someone else and to contemplate the materiality of life – if only for a moment.
The interaction of human and animalistic figures in Takura’s work signifies the energies which sometimes resides in each of us – influencing us and, in many ways, determining our paths of who we are and what we can be. It is a tension that fascinates Takura. In moving between these energies, his work embodies a reclamation of place and knowledge of what is to be human, artist and Zimbabwean, whilst inviting the viewer to contemplate the energies contained within their own identities.
The works, exhibited as part of the Zimbabwe Assemblage Collective (ZAC) at Full Circle Art Africa, are representative of challenges faced by the artist – it is a story of vulnerability and hardship told in worn out soles, torn threads and roughly hewn fabrics that weave together a distinctly human-like figure.
Still, a sense of dignity in the discarded objects is meticulously preserved.
In addition to group shows around Southern Africa, Takura’s work has achieved international recognition, winning first place at both the Zimbabwe National Annual Exhibition and the Chinese Year of the Horse Exhibition.