Female photographer in African arts showcase

The 10th edition of the Dak’Art Biennale African visual arts showcase takes place in Senegal between May 11 and June 10 and Zimbabwe will be represented by female photographer Nancy Mteki.

This year’s edition, which runs under the theme “Contemporary Creation and Social Dynamics”, will have 42 artists, (16 females and 26 males) from 21 African countries.

The Dak’Art Biennale will be curated by London-based arts icon Christine Eyene, who was also the curator of the 2011 Gwanza Month of Photography in Zimbabwe.

Algeria-based Nadira Laggonne and Riason Naidoo of South Africa will be the other curators.

Mteki said she was honoured to represent the country at such a prestigious showcase.

“I am happy to have that rare opportunity. My participation at the event means upcoming photographers will have the opportunities to participate in the next editions of the exhibition,” she said.

Mteki began her career in 2007 as a sculptress drawing inspiration from her artistic background since some of her family members are engaged in sculpture.

In 2008, she ventured into photography after joining Iliso Labantu Photographers in Cape Town, South Africa, and held her first exhibition at the fourth edition of the Cape Town Month of Photography that same year.

Her first photo exhibition in Zimbabwe was in 2009 at Gwanza Month of Photography and was awarded an Honorary Mention Certificate.

She also exhibited in the 2010 and 2011 editions of the same competition. Last year she took part at the Harare International Festival of the Arts. Mteki said her works were “quite diverse and represent many aspects of everyday life”.

She called upon female artists to rise up and show they can stand their own in the male-dominated scene.

“Female artists must have passion to make their presence felt. They should exhibit talent and show they can match or even surpass their male counterparts. I hope another female artist will be invited to the next edition of the Dak’Art Biennale.”

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