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ISSUE 65(FREE READ)

National gallery of zimbabwe exibits PPC Imaginarium

The PPC Imaginarium Awards were established in 2014. The Awards were set up to encourage the use of concrete in the execution of Art. Different disciplines have, since then, been called to participate in order to create works in concrete. The response to the call was overwhelming, particularly from sculptors and fashion designers. In future editions, there is hope that the architectural design, jewelery design, industrial design and short film disciplines respond emphatically. A new medium has thus been engaged, as the Zimbabwean art scene had previously gravitated towards installations created from a multitude of substances, rarely incorporating cement.

The PPC Imaginarium Awards have thus kindled a new fire on the Zimbabwean plateau, one that will be based in a medium that is largely viewed for its functionality; so often gilded in plaster and paint to provide a need as opposed to an embrace of aesthetic value. PPC Zimbabwe was highly involved in the organization of the International Conference on African Cultures at the National Gallery of Zimbabwe in 2017, the event serving as a Launchpad for this growing Competition. The partnership between the two organizations grew from then as over the course of time, the facilitation of outreach activities in preparation of the PPC Imaginarium, were underway. The PPC Imaginarium Awards have a running exhibition at the National Gallery of Zimbabwe; culminated from a series of workshops in Harare, Bulawayo and Mutare.

The workshops were highly enlightening to the participants as experts were flown in to brief them on the various techniques that can be utilized to create works across the disciplines. The workshops eventually led to a two month period which allowed the artists to develop concepts and execute their desired projects, utilizing a brand that was designed to build from strength in the process. As the submission date approached, the hopes laden on the nominal PPC Imaginarium Awards presented adept and dexterous artworks that were highly desirable. A judging process followed, separating the best from the rest.

After a long and cogitating view of the artworks, there was the consensual selection of the vanquishers of the works that had been ring fenced therein. The thematic and formal values of the works; the use of medium and dimensional compatibility of the works led to X and X walking away as the first winners of the PPC Imaginarium Awards. The 2019 Call for Participation has officially released and individuals working in sculpture, architectural design, jewelery design, industrial design, fashion design and short film; are invited to create works in, or inspired by concrete. Information on this Open Call can be obtained by visiting ppcimaginarium.co.za


Text by Frank Mandeya

Photography by Pxel Photography for TBWA

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