BY SHARON SIBINDI
The National Gallery of Zimbabwe (NGZ) in Bulawayo director Butholezwe Nyathi says the institution seeks to progressively improve the levels of knowledge, skills and networks of resident and non-resident artists through training workshops.
Nyathi said NGZ commenced the year in the context of yet another Covid-19-induced lockdown and the institution has, however, formulated its plans for 2021.
“A key area of focus in 2021 is visual artist capacity enhancement. The NGZ seeks to progressively improve the levels of knowledge, skills and networks of our resident and non-resident artists,” Nyathi said.
“In this regard, we will roll out a series of training workshops facilitated by local and international resource persons. A digital technology has emerged as one of the priority areas of training. We are desirous to see more artists exploiting digital technologies to create and promote their work.”
Nyathi said they were keen to see more Bulawayo artists taking up residencies at regional and international galleries and their work being showcased globally.
“Introduced in 2019 and suspended in 2020 due to Covid-19, the Queen Loziba Lecture Series returns in 2021. The lecture series is a critical thinking and analysis platform that interrogates topical socio-cultural issues afflicting society,” he said.
“All things being equal, the 2021 edition will feature an international guest speaker.
“Keen to identify, nurture and promote talent from diverse geographical locations, 2021 will witness an expansion of the NGZ’s outreach programme.
“Expanding the outreach programme is the first in a series of interventions to expand the base and range of talent that gets exhibited at the NGZ. An equally important aspect in the visual arts value chain is audience consumption of works of art. This manifests in viewership and purchase of works of art.”
Nyathi said NGZ would engage in various audience development initiatives during the year.
“As part of the concluded renovations, the NGZ in 2020 set up a dedicated co-working space for the creative community in Bulawayo. Now outstanding is the equipping of the co-working space with tables and chairs and access to the internet,” he said.