Young Malawian painter targets the UK, US market

July 31, 2019
| Report Focus News

A young Malawian whose artistic work has attracted attention for many in Zomba, the country’s old capital city is targeting the international market, specifically Britain and USA with his work while at the same time empowering fellow youths locally.

Arthur Matembela, 32, believes is optimistic that his sign-writing and pottery work will impress many in the two countries since it will capture some of the historical and fascinating features of Africa.

“In the UK am targeting paintings depicting historical and fascinating features about the British colonialism in Malawi, we have Blantyre City here and there is also Blantyre City in Scotland, we have mandala, a first white person to have a car in Malawi, we have the church of Scotland,” he said, ” These are some of the things we need to expose to the new generation in the UK for them to know their contribution to modern Malawi.”

Matembela who ventured in the art career in 2003 when he was just 16, specialises in painting, fine arts pottery and grass art, Patience Radge and others.

He believes his work exposure in the UK and US will put Malawi on the world map and attract more tourists to the southern African nation, a move lively to maximize the country’s revenue collection. President Peter Mutharika has singled tourism as one of his government’s priorities in the Malawi Development Growth Strategy.

Meanwhile, Matembela is looking for well-wishers to support his trip to the two countries.

Apart from focusing on his career, Matembela is, however, concerned about his areas rising unemployment boom. He says the problem calls for more efforts to create opportunities for the youth by concerned individuals, the private sector and government.

| Report Focus News
Arthura Matembera a painter and Potter pausing with his students

To lead by example, he established a Vocational training centre called Effort Art and Culture Village, where desperate unemployment youths from his area are privileged to get trained for free in different artwork to be self-reliant.

“After their graduation, the students will open shops for their artistic work and make money for themselves, this will make self economic reliant and In the long run contribute to poverty reduction in Malawi,” he observed.

Matembela hinted that apart from his school creating a learning platform for the youths, the beneficiaries also refrain from risky behaviours which may lead to contraction of sexually transmitted infections including HIV and Aids among the youths who are in majority.

He also says youths are the ones who are involved in several criminal cases, hence, the provision of vocational skills to keep them busy.

One of his students in fine arts confided in Report Focus that she was very happy that her dream of becoming an artist was surely being fulfilled.

Bester Awari, a Parliamentarian for the area, Zomba Central Constituency is impressed with the initiative and is providing little support to the institution largely run by Matembela.

Matembela’s has been already been exposed to South Africa, Zimbabwe and Zambia