No products in the cart.

No products in the cart.

Michael Mmbuji
Painter

"Art means life to me."

"Art means life to me."

Growing up, Mmbuji was considered quite rambunctious, always drawing on the couches and on the walls at home. This often annoyed his parents. It was only when he started school that he received praise for his paintings; the teachers saw it as a gift. That was a turning point for him. Thereafter, his mother started to respect his work and encourage him to keep on going.

Initially, Mmbuji had dreams of becoming a pastor but then, after learning of his talent, these dreams evolved. His late uncle was a great source of inspiration because whenever him and his best friend visited him, they would be so engulfed with the way he would paint to the point they would not want to eat nor leave. The colours and how he applied them is what attracted Mmbuji the most; it felt like he could hear the sound of the colours in his heart. As a result, when Mmbuji started painting, he drew inspiration from his heart and he would paint for fun. However, when he learned that you could earn a living from art through galleries, that is when he decided to pursue his career doing art. He started with painting on paper then moved to canvas, experimenting with beads here and there.

Mmbuji’s artwork captures the beauty of people and culture within the local landscape. As well as the attractive animals, that surround Tanzania’s expansive terrain. As a person who loves to explore new places and expand his knowledge, Mmbuji’s dream is to become a successful world-renowned artist.

Critique from the Gallery

Mmbuji’s use of pastels in his backgrounds and bold depictions of the subjects in his portrait work bares a close resemblance to that of Kehinde Wiley’s work, with the slight variation of the background style and the subjects in which they choose to depict. Whereas Wiley often uses fully formed floral motifs and prominent/celebrity figures in his portraits, Mmbuji distinctly prefers to use ordinary tribesmen and animals in his work, and applies a pointillism technique to his backgrounds which basically consists of a series of small complementary colored brush strokes across his entire backdrop. Which in effect creates a decorative sensibility that further embelishes the floating appearance of the subjects positioned at the centre of the canvas.

Selected Works

Showing all 3 results

cartcrossmenu linkedin facebook pinterest youtube rss twitter instagram facebook-blank rss-blank linkedin-blank pinterest youtube twitter instagram