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Aboubakary Chikoyo

“Art is not only my life-line but an emotional power. A useful tool to convey messages to the community.”

Two of his greatest passions are painting and sculpting although as a child he dreamed of being a singer. The fourth in a family of six children, he was the only one with artistic senses; painting and sculpting came natural to him. Witty and experimental, as a child, Chikoyo was lucky to be surrounded by people who believed in him and that’s where he gained his inspiration from. That and Haji Chilonga, who became his mentor, teacher and his role model. Haji Chilonga contributed greatly to where he is today. Talented in both singing and painting, Chikoyo had to pick his poison so painting it was.

The style Chikoyo uses in drawing is abstract and fine art. Art for him has always been a tool to convey messages to his targeted audience. Nothing brings him more joy than completing a piece of work and the intended audience accepts, loves, and appreciates. Chikoyo gets a kick from the process of creating the work to the point of purchase; he feels like he has fulfilled his purpose and his work is of value.

In addition to painting, he also enjoys playing and listening to music, and carving chairs. Humble, reserved and slightly shy, Chikoyo would not consider himself as a big shot artist, yet through his craft he has managed to acquire land which to an average person is considered a huge success. Chikoyo wants to become a world famous artist. His dream project would be to run his own art classes on painting and sculpting. At present he considers his craft as his little child, that he is nurturing and caring for, to help him in the future. He has sown the seeds, hoping one day to reap the harvest.

Critique from the Gallery

Chikayo’s vibrant brushwork and distinct use of color are key features of what sets him apart from other renown contemporaries in the Tanzanian art scene. His vivid depictions of common rituals and activities in Tanzanian culture, displays a slight nuance from the archetypal african art style of representation due to his resounding technique of depicting his subjects with frenetic brushwork that sometimes nearly obscures the appearance of his subjects beyond recognition, whilst still maintaining a kitschy sensibility that contemporary african art has vastly become known for.

Selected Works

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