raphael chikukwa2.jpgThe newly appointed curator of the National Gallery of Zimbabwe, Raphael Chikukwa says his vision and plans are to see the growth of the arts industry, especially the emergent of young visual artists in Zimbabwe. 


Chikukwa, who holds a Masters of Arts Degree in Curating and Contemporary Design from Kingston University in the United Kingdom, spoke about his new appointment and his plans to elevate the state of the arts industry in Zimbabwe.


There are plans to include a number of international exhibitions and establish links with a number of international organizations while local exhibitions will also include international shows.



“Some of the big plans I have are to have a big curators’ conference which will take place probably at the end of the year and huge exhibitions, bring in a number of international artistes to Zimbabwe,  and to be able to create a platform because our national art gallery of Zimbabwe is a critical space and we are a platform for exchange,” he said.


The National Gallery has had no curator for about two years. There are no curatorial studies offered in Africa and there are very few offered in the West.


Most curators in Africa are self-taught.


He had this to say: “Normally in the museum perspective in the past, a curator was the custodian of a collection, but in modern days a curator is some who realises and conceptualizes exhibitions and sees them through.”


Chikukwa first studied at the Harare Arts Centre in Mbare and earned a postgraduate certificate from the University of Witwatersrand in the late 1980s.  In 2006, he got a place at Kingston University in London to do a Masters degree.


He was then awarded a scholarship by the British Council and it is this scholarship that enabled him to attend Kingston University where he did and Masters of Arts in Curating Contemporary Design.