ARTIST: TAKUDZWA MPOFU
COUNTRY: ZIMBABWE
MATERIALS USED: PENCIL, BALLPOINT PEN, PRISMACOLOUR PENCIL COLOURS

Art is Resilient. Meaning it pulls through, it fights even when all hope seems lost. It stands firm when everything around it is falling apart. I live in Harare, Zimbabwe, and my drawing was inspired by the colourful murals I have seen in our Mbare suburb. Anyone who knows Mbare knows that it is not a particularly beautiful suburb, housing some of the most impoverished people in our community; but the murals on some of the buildings there are so incredibly beautiful and vibrant, so much that it takes one’s eye away from all the clutter around them. The concept of my piece involves an artist, who, despite the dangers presented to us in going outside, has taken it upon himself to paint a mural depicting a message of hope. The mural shows a young woman, an artist, at the ready with her weapons, the paintbrush and the palette, preparing to wage war against the fear, anxiety and worry that COVID 19 has brought with it. It’s a fight she’ll never back down from. Because in a crisis such as the one in which we find ourselves now, art is home, art is therapy, art is life itself and most important, art is hope. Come rain or shine, art remains, it does not sleep, it doesn’t falter, it remains, always ready to bring a smile and a glimmer of hope to whomever beholds it. It is also a very effective coping mechanism for the artists themselves, because we can relieve stress and allow ourselves to become happier simply by picking up pencil and paper and taking a break from the sometimes doom and gloom world around us. This is how we, as artists, fight the war. As such, art indeed, is resilient, unfailing when one needs it the most.