First retro exhibition of stone sculpture opens in London

LONDON - While stone has been sculpted in Zimbabwe for 1000 years, its modern incarnation is a recent phenomenon. This landmark exhibition – the first ever retrospective of Zimbabwean stone sculpture - opening at Oxo Tower Wharf on 22 June, offers a glimpse of how this African art mov

ement has developed from its roots some 50 years ago to become one of the world’s most exciting genres of sculptural expression.

The exhibition, organised by African Millennium Foundation, would not have been possible without the assistance of the curators of the National Gallery of Zimbabwe and by the British Museum with access to rare items from its important Frank McEwen Bequest.

The impetus for the post-Second World War burst of creativity came from Frank McEwan, the British art expert who was appointed Director of the then Rhodesia’s National Gallery in the 1950s. His private collection, held by the British Museum, is the inspiration for this show.

Alongside older pieces from the McEwen era and pieces from private collections of the sculptors themselves, allowing the exhibition to trace the influences and development of Zimbabwean sculpting through to the present day. Visually stunning and deliciously tactile, there are some large and small-scale sculptures suitable for both interior and exterior spaces that are for sale from the show.

Among the major living sculptors whose work is shown and for sale are Lazarus Takawira, Locardia Ndandarika, Maud Mariga and Dominic Benhura, probably Zimbabwe’s most cutting edge sculptor. Dominic Benhura is in London for the show from 22-29 June.

Tout the show with curator of African Odyssey, William Saunderson-Meyer and guest artist Dominic Benhura on 24 & 25 June at 12noon. Tours are free but advance booking necessary by emailing [email protected]

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