Interview with artist Evans Mbugua about the influence of prints in his work, how growing up in Nairobi inspired him and the necessity of Social Media for artists.
APiF: Please introduce yourself.
Evans Mbugua: I’m Evans Mbugua, an artist designer from Nairobi living in Paris.
APiF: A lot of your art incorporates prints – why is that?
Evans: I create prints using everyday signs / pictograms found in my urban environment. These are a form of universal language and expression in my artwork. They’re inspired by traditional prints which are also used as a means of communication.
APiF: What is your cultural background and how does your heritage influence your art & designs?
Evans: I grew up in the cosmopolitan city of Nairobi characterized by the cultural mix of divers populations and influences both local and international. This is great in adapting to our “global village” and has largely influenced my artistic expression.
APiF: How would you describe your art?
Evans: My work seeks to bring out, in the best way that I can, the “beautiful side of life”. I paint, take photographs and film: happiness, zest for life, love, pleasure, dancing, pride, silence, emotions, hope, the future …
APiF: Is there one piece that you are specifically fond of and if yes why?
Evans: I’m always fond of the next piece which I’m going to create! But currently I’m also a fan of “Je t’aime un peu / Number 10” which will be showing in Paris starting October 17th.
APiF: Does it help or hurt artists to be on Instagram / social media? Do artists have to be on social media to be recognized – What is your experience?
Evans: Social media can be a great boost for an artist’s work. It’s a good means of (visual) communication when well exploited. But one doesn’t have to be on social media to be(come) a successful artist.
APiF: Any upcoming exhibits in the US or Europe or the Continent you want to shout out?
Evans: Yes, there are several coming up in different countries.
- USA: “My Collection” exhibition and auction at MoCaDa museum, Brooklyn in October
- France: “HighLife” (solo) exhibition at Art-Z Gallery, Paris – 19th Oct to 12th Nov
- UK: (solo) exhibition at Gallery of African Art (GAFRA), London – 30th Nov through December
- Spain: (group) exhibition at Out of Africa Galeria, Sitges – December
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