“Growing up I never saw any black females in any of the animation movies I watched, this is why I decided to change that through my art work” narrates Sakeus Tuhafeni Nghitungumbala.
Nghitungumbala is a third year HR student at the International University of Namibia, who recently held his first ever exhibition at the FNCC restaurant. The event was braced by various members of the public who were really intrigued by the way he was able to bring forth the true feel of what black girl magic was.
This exhibition is one that celebrates not only the beauty of a black women but their power and resilience as well. Surely it is a great time to be alive for black women, as more people are now taking the stand to honour them in all that they do. Be it through art work, music or writing among a number of creative mediums.
It is also great to know that young children now have the ability to see imagery or can watch TV shows that have black women in them, women who are able to be strong black super heroes. This has always been a dream for Nghitungumbala who noted that through his exhibition he managed to do what he intended and that was to use the Girl Like Chocolate as an expression to pay a homage to all magical black women.
The room in which the exhibition was held was filled with beautiful black women. These ladies were all happy to be in a place where their skin colour, hair and all black like features that they carry were brought to the fore. This proves that women are a very important gift to the world.With black men in attendance having attended the exhibition, it was great to witness their celebration of Nghitungumbala’s work but to also show the women of colour that they stand in solidarity with them.
Speaking to Nghitungumbala who seemed like a reserved shy guy, he courageously opened up to The Lounge on the sidelines of his exhibition. He highlighted that this was his way of creating animations to add to that black content of animation screening.
The young lad presented a series of ten digital pieces which he created through Photoshop and Adobe Illustrator. Eight of the pieces are said to have been bought already, which has shown him that there is room for digital art in Namibia.
“I believe that there is room from digital artists in the country; it may not be on the commercial level nor is it very popular but from what I have seen so far with my recent work and from other digital artists, there is definitely a place for digital art in the creative industry.
Just like traditional art, I do not really think that there is a huge gap between the two so I am sure that it will grow soon onto people”.
Having started off with experimenting with digital art right after he finished school, Nghitungumbala noted that the journey while creating ‘Girl Like Chocolate’ was one that was surreal.
“The experience was scary at first because I did not know how people would respond to it. However I am overwhelmed by the positive feedback. It seems like there are so many people who can actually relate to the story that I am telling in these pieces.
I am happy that my time spent on learning digital skills through YouTube and being eager about learning different editing features on PicMonkey has paid off. Now I know that my work can relate to a lot of young people”.
Inspired by different mentors who are musicians, he gave credit to all the artists who managed to inspire him through their lyrics. That’s is the source of his inspiration.
“I listen to different kinds of music, a lot of it inspires what I come up with. It could be a lot of Hip hop music from artists like AKA, Anderson Park and Manifest who hails from Ghana”.
Nghitungumbala concluded by sharing that he is thinking about working on another series of Digital work.
“I want to expose society to more of the beautiful black content that is out there”.