Martin Jjunju, Dance to the tunes, 2023, Acrylics on canvas, 97 x 96 cm. © The Artist. Courtesy of the Artist and Amasaka Gallery
DANCING TO THE TUNE OF THE EVERYDAY
A duo showcase of Martin Jjunju and Kato BC
Feb 03 - Mar 10, 2023
Plot 12, Birch Avenue, Masaka
Through the paintings of Martin Jjunju and Kato BC the exhibition listens into the melodies and rhythms that vibrate through the everyday, full of tension, hope, power plays, desires, and intimate moments.
Martin Jjunju (b. 1979) – born, raised, and practicing in Masaka – is a keen observer of the everyday realities that traverse his community. While in his earlier work, he would portray his subjects within their usual surroundings, in his newest works we find them immersed in abstract landscapes further accentuating the artist’s focus on the intimate gestures that encapsulate humanness. Portrayed against fluid, intertwining color fields, Jjunju’s personalities picture the wide array of people and stories composing the artist’s environment.
Kato BC (b. 1997) has his own way of reflecting on the world as he perceives it and as it shapes him. He finds and over-paints political posters in the streets of Kampala to give a sense of the tumultuous political backdrop against which life unfolds. Obscuring the party messages which only shine through in occasional details, he blurs the politicians’ particularity, leaving back only their strife for influence paired with a sense of multitude and chaos. And in this lies the whole point of Kato’s work. It speaks to the personal struggles of the artist navigating a world of challenges and obstacles to overcome. His way of obscuring facial features in thick black brushstrokes takes inspiration from his blind twin sister. However testing, the impairment of sight opens up other avenues for sensing and sharpens the ear for the tunes that flow through life and keep it in motion.
Whether it is the soft melodies of Jjunju’s familiar faces and empathy or the sharp drumbeat of Kato’s anonymous portraits of the powers at hand, the music plays for everybody and turns life into a constant dance of possibilities. It is this music that we invite you to listen in with us.