Hello All, it has been a while since I last posted here.
Since the last one there has been an amazing trip to Australia with my friend and colleague Emanuel Mbise where I was introduced to Callum, grandchild number eight.
The hospitality shown by folk who included Robert & Penny McIntyre, Kathleen Hunt and Sally, Tom, Frazer, Quinly Deacon/Hardwick was much appreciated.
Presentations at Queensland College of Art and Gympie Regional Gallery and "The Taste of Tanzania" 3 day event organised by Wendy Birrell & Penny McIntyre at Wan' Din' In Art Space were very successful with terrific folk attending. Emanuel had a brilliant time and what he learned and observed whilst in Australia is proving very valuable as he grows in his role in Arusha.
Since arriving back I have been part of the development of Arusha Artists Association which will advise government on all things art, develop art education programs, arrange art exhibitions, aspire to a higher standard of art in Tanzania in preparation for the 2019 East Africa Art Biennale. I also continued to tutor a student in drawing and art theory, had a drawing workshop with 25 women at the Dawoodi Bohra mosque and a very successful Arusha Christmas Fair and Tanz Hands Markets.
The sewing business is going along nicely and we are aiming to have a fashion parade in March/April this year.
There was some investigating moving into a share house with Emanuel and his brother John but the process in Tanzania ia daunting to say the least so now we are building a house on the family plot in Nkoamansa.
In the village, Nkoaranga Tanzania, where I work and teach there are 320 children at school who are outside the NGO/charity/donation network. Everyday I observe these bright, intelligent young people walk home in tattered school uniforms, I weep. Having been in Australia where I see so many with so much I am now compelled to start supplying these children with new sweaters. Included below are images of an old school sweater and presenting a new one to Heaven who was thrilled to receive it. Can you imagine attending a school where most of the children wear tattered clothing like this?
There has been a wonderful response from folk who became aware of this initiative through Facebook, thank you.
The studio is commencing its new jewellery course this coming Monday with four students who have completed the introduction unit.
Everyday there is so many joyful time countered by heartache and frustration. The images below reflect some of my life here in Tanzania, flora that is familiar and others strange. Insects and critters fill my life, regular sightings of various monkeys and exotic birds add colour and magic to my life.
My passionate affair with Mounts Meru and Kilimanjaro continues unabated, the majesty and magnitude of these two regularly reduces me to tears.
I hope the images portray some sense of my continuing magical time in Tanzania.
To you all, have a fabulous 2018.