Kudzanai Chiurai Zimbabwe, b. 1981

Kudzanai Chiurai is a multi-disciplinary artist working in photography, drawings, film, painting, and sculpture. Chiurai was born one year after Zimbabwe’s emergence from white-ruled Rhodesia, therefore his art practice is largely focused around cycles of political, economic and social strife present in post-colonial societies. Chiurai’s artwork confronts viewers with the psychological and physical experience of African metropolises. Combining expressionist gestures with images and texts from popular culture, the artist tackles some of the most pressing social issues, such as xenophobia, exile, displacement, inequality, as well as the continent’s emancipation.

 

Chiurai’s latest project, The Library of Things We Forgot to Remember, is built around his collecting practice focused on preserving archives and memorialising social and cultural history from southern Africa. It’s an accumulation of artefacts such as books, pamphlets, zines, newspapers, vinyl records, political posters, audio recordings and other ephemera – materials that explore the relationship between cultural production and social movements.

 

"The Library of Things We Forgot to Remember is a work that I consider to be itself a form of liberated zone. I consider the archival material and recording as broadcasts of Afro-futures. A frequency that mobilised and energised the struggle for independence and liberation. It's an archive that brings the past into the present and will continue to echo as we consider our futures.”

– Kudzanai Chiurai

 

Kudzanai Chiurai (b. 1981 in Harare, ZW) graduated with a BA Fine Arts degree from the University of Pretoria, ZA. The artist has held numerous solo exhibitions and has participated in various international exhibitions, such as Figures & Fictions: Contemporary South African Photography (2011) at the Victoria and Albert Museum in London and Impressions from South Africa, 1965 to Now (2011) at the Museum of Modern Art in New York. Chiurai’s Conflict Resolution series was exhibited at dOCUMENTA (2012) in Kassel. Other notable exhibitions include The Divine Comedy: Heaven, Purgatory and Hell Revisited at Museum für Moderne Kunst in Frankfurt (2014), as well as Art/Afrique, Le nouvel atelier (2017) at the Fondation Louis Vuitton in Paris, Regarding the Ease of Others (2017) at the Zeitz Museum of Contemporary Art Africa, Genesis [Je n’isi isi]- We Live in Silence at IFA in Stuttgart, Germany and Ubuntu, a Lucid Dream (2020) at the Palais de Tokyo in Paris.

 

Kudzanai Chiurai was shortlisted for the Future Generation Art Prize in Venice, in 2014. Forbes listed the artist among “13 Africans To Watch In 2013” and in 2015 named him among the "15 Young African Creatives Rebranding Africa". Kudzanai Chiurai lives and works in Harare, ZW.