Kudzanai Violet Hwami by Deniz Guzel

Portia Zvavahera and Kudzanai-Violet Hwami have been selected for the 59th Exhibition of Art at la Biennale di Venezia. The selection has been hailed as a progressive occurrence in the country’s Visual Art sector. Zvavahera and Hwami have appeared in Venice under the Pavilion of Zimbabwe in separate editions. Zvavahera exhibited in Dudziro: Interrogating the Vision of Religious Beliefs at the 55th Edition in 2013; while Hwami exhibited in Soko Risina Musoro: A Tale without a Head, at the 58th Edition in 2019.

Zvavahera and Hwami become the first artists to be selected for the main exhibition in the Giardini and Arsenale since the late Nicholas Mukomberanwa was invited to exhibit in the 44th Edition of la Biennale di Venezia in 1990. The exhibition entitled The Milk of Dreams is scheduled to open in April and is curated by Cecilia Alemani, who stated of the exhibition being
“a trans-historic exhibition, creating a dialogue between the present and past and creating a dialogue between stories of exclusion.”

Portia Zvavahera. Photo by Mario Todeschini

On this achievement, the Commissioner of the Pavilion of Zimbabwe, Raphael Chikukwa stated; “We must, as a country, celebrate with these two artists as they represent our Art Practice as Zimbabwe at large.” Chikukwa added that this selection shows that Zimbabwean Art resonates with International Curators and Curators. “This double celebration and participation at the 59th la Biennale di Venezia mean a lot for us as the National Gallery of Zimbabwe and the Ministry of Youth, Sport, Arts, and Recreation. The Curator of the Pavilion of Zimbabwe, Fadzai Muchemwa added to this momentous feat by stating she was proud of the duo and the appearance realizes that consistency and hard work pay.

Zimbabwe will appear in a National Participation at The Pavilion of Zimbabwe, officially opening for its Sixth consecutive appearance at la Biennale di Venezia on the 23rd of April 2022. This edition’s exhibition will be entitled I Did Not Leave a Sign Here? featuring four artists; Kresiah Mukwazhi, Wallen Mapondera, Terrence Musekiwa, and Ronald Muchatuta.