Be just be – you are a gift

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Nukwami

be just be | you are a gift

afrolifestyle-Interview with Nukwami | 06/2020 in Berlin |

African patterns in arts and design

• Nukwami, the multi-talented artist shows us how easy it could be to communicate with each other – thank you!

Nukwami can you briefly introduce yourself and your art?

I am a Rwandan German artist. My artistic work ranges from picture books, illustrations, paintings, murals, merchandize designs to soundscapes, songs and instrumental music compositions. Currently, I am more focussed on my visual arts Paintings and merchandize with African designs. My visual style is currently largely influenced by traditional ethnic/African patterns.

I love to create, it is like breathing, it is mandatory for my wellbeing and enables self-discovery, connecting with the unknown realms, to the unconscious or to people and different cultures. Art also gave me an authentic voice, a place to do what I love and to be myself. 

Where do you get your inspiration from?

I would say that inspiration, to me, has various origins …it depends on the creative channel through which I create. My approach to create can be deductive, inductive or improvisational.  My visual art comes from spontaneous impulses, visions, or dreams but it also may be triggered from outside like e.g. a conversation, a pattern on a wall, a subtle sound, a word, or an attractive color…I mean it can be anything that speaks to me at that moment. 

Musically, ideas come mostly through improvisation and are often fuelled by the specific mood of the day. Sometimes I heard a melody in my head or in a dream.

Luna Loves the moon | a wonderful children’s book | 24/7

How did you get the idea for Luna?

My first picture book Luna was inspired by a dream I had. I remembered the story line of the dream and decided to write it down. 

What is Luna about?

Luna is a story of a cat that dreams of going to the moon. The story tells how through love she fulfils her seemingly impossible dream.

When did you start with music?

While I was studying sociology, I had that epiphany that I would regret not having followed my dream of being an artist and to compose songs. So I finally decided to follow my heart registered at a private music school to learn about music production and music composing theory through workshops and seminars.

Nukwami | u_R_a_gift (soundcloud)

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How did you come to produce your music yourself?

While I was studying sociology, I had that epiphany that I would regret not having followed my dream of being an artist and to compose songs. So I finally decided to follow my heart registered at a private music school to learn about music production and music composing theory through workshops and seminars.

Nukwami | be just be (soundcloud)

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When did you start to paint?

It all started during the time I wrote Luna. I wanted to make a picture book but didn’t know or had the means to illustrate it. So I started making my own illustrations. I think it was around 2015-2016. When I found my style making illustration I later made my first acrylic painting entitled: “The doors are open” from my SQUARES series in 2018.

Nukwami | wall paintings

Does your work reflect phases of your life?

Not consciously but I am sure it does.

Meet the artist

Nukwami | Music Control (soundcloud)

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Nukwami | Who (soundcloud)

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Where does your inspiration come from to use African patterns in your art?

Strangely enough, it came from the fact that I am a comic book fan. I grew up with Mangas, Disney, Marvel or DC comics as well as French or Belgian Bandes Dessinées and always liked to dive into these unique wonderful designs and worlds of each “comic design school”.  The only thing missing were designs or worlds that I could visually identify with. Later when I decided writing my first picture book, I developed my own style for its illustrations which integrated African patterns and designs. 

The same goes for African patterns designs for my merchandizes. I was searching for products with contemporary African/Rwandan designs but couldn’t find any. So I decided to create them myself and that’s actually how e.g. the phone covers came about.

Thank you for the Interview!

Nukwami | exclusive mobile phone protective_covers | coming soon