John Mubiru is among the new breed of African Artists. His art coming off age in a globe financial collapse, like most Black African oil artists for the sale for original African paintings let alone any paintings or art were the first to take a hit. With collaboration with other Ugandan Artists, they are designing and putting up the web site titled "The Ugandan Masters". The combined effort is already showing good results ranking on page one in goggle and yahoo search's. This effort will have at least 20 top Ugandan Artists featured on the Ugandan Masters web site by end of year 2012.
Mubiru's latest original African painting "Through the storm"
An African Artist's Journey through his native Africa:
I love travelling through Africa. After sitting in a car or a bus for along time looking out the window, your thoughts start wandering of. These mirage like warriors of Africa's massai like are part of that half asleep haft awake state I'm always in after travelling for long periods of time. As an African artist now now in America my vision of Africa is shifting from that of most other African artists. My paintings of day to day African life have more meaning and depth than when I was still living in a Africa. I visit Africa now and then, but not as often as I would l like. I'm in the process of going to live in Africa.
Contemporary African Art and Oil Paintings by John Mubiru.
John Mubiru conducting a Student/Teacher workshop about African art at Berkeley College in Manhattan.
Mubiru's paintings of traditional and contemporary Black African art are influenced by his childhood. He was a born in a post colonial Africa plagued with power struggles in his native Uganda and the African continent. He later ended up settling in the United States. His time away from his homeland of Uganda has the effect of concentrating on it more in his artworks.
"Africa is in transition" he says. "That is why I'm so fascinated by cultures that have stuck to our old ways of life. When I look at the Massai, Karamajongo and other nomadic African tribes, I feel a link to our simple way of life that is no more".
John Mubiru’s striking tribal motifs and scenery evoke the essence of Black African art culture and life... vibrant, colorful and alive. His use of a palette knife, blunt paint brush and thick oil application technique gives his work almost a three dimensional feel.
African paintings and Batik influence.
Mubiru has not always worked in oils. Like most East African artist he started out painting in Batik when he lived in Nairobi, Kenya amongst other Ugandan artists. This process utilizes dyes applied to cloth, cotton or silk using wax as a blocker. "I use wax as a blocker” he says. “The paint doesn't go where the wax is. I start from light to dark dyes. I will apply lets say yellow then block the parts that I want to stay yellow with wax, then apply blue to get greens and so on." Mubiru learned this technique from exiled Ugandan artists while he was living in Kenya. By default, batik has always been an experimental art form and for a creative artist like Mubiru, the sky is the limit. He took it to the next level, with muted earth tones for instance. One of the techniques he developed is particularly affective in a series of works inspired by ancient African art and rock paintings. The work took on a jagged series of lines, similar to cracks on a rock face.
African Oil Paintings and current works.
While Mubiru's strong figurative style and earth tone color palette draws strongly from his earlier batik style, his application of color doesn't. He mostly uses a blunt brush and palette knife applying the color in bold and often thick strokes. His light play has an amazing effect on his work, giving his subject matter a larger than life feel. Most of his paintings are now available in large gallery pieces and smaller field studies. Some select works are also available in affordable giclees and limited edition prints.
Katya Comments on Mubiru's African Oil Paintings.
http://johnmubiru.blogspot.com/ I had the pleasure of seeing your work at Cornhill- I am deeply impressed by your dedication to depicting the beauty of African culture. I have just graduated from high school and my senior thesis in AP Studio was a social commentary on human resilience to destruction with an emphasis on the genocide in Darfur. (my paintings are shown at www.westfallstudios.com if you are interested- though the sight is mostly my jewelry) My paintings depend on realism to evoke emotion and it is incredibly refreshing to see how much emotion and power your pieces cause the viewer to feel from abstraction, purity of color and bold brush strokes. I wanted you to know that your art has inspired me and, I am sure, others- I wish you the best of luck with your work!
Upcoming Events 2011
PARK AVE SUMMER ART FEST.
August 6th, 2011:10am - 6pm
August 7th, 2011: 10am - 5pm
WASHINGTON SQUARE OUTDOOR ART EXHIBIT.
...in the heart of Greenwich Village.
Runs through labor day weekend:
September 3, 4, 5: 10am-6pm
September 10, 11: 10am-6pm
LOOK FOR ME AT THE
GRACIE SQUARE ART SHOW
October 1st, 2011: 8am-6pm
October 2nd 2011: 8am-5pm
Rain or Shine.
Coming up in early 2012 is an exhibition with other international artists at Bayer. I will keep you informed.