Gwaza’s drawings, inspired by emotions, make waves in UK

2017-10-12 06:00
Nyanga’s Nqabayethu Gwaza amazes with his progress as an artist. PHOTO: Mandla Mahashe

Nyanga’s Nqabayethu Gwaza amazes with his progress as an artist. PHOTO: Mandla Mahashe

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Nyanga East’s most promising artistic talents, Nqabayethu Gwaza has ambitions of taking his work overseas.

Gwaza, 20, is a visual artist whose works are so impressive that he only sells them to art collectors in London.

The oil painter specialises in portraits and says he chose to draw faces as he loves to express the emotions of his subjects.

“I draw real people from friends to family members or interesting faces that I come across.

I love human faces because of the stories they can tell, specifically women, because they display much more emotions.

Men tend to hide how they feel, because they have to appear strong, but women allow their emotions to show,” he said.

Gwaza was first introduced to art as part of his primary school classes at Zonnebloem and continued in high school in Wynberg High, but it was in 2015 that he began to dabble in oil painting.

“I started doing it as a hobby ... he says as he shows his earlier work which doesn’t look half as polished as his latest work.

He said that he has to do draw inspiration first before he paints, but if he spends two weeks without a work of art, he starts having withdrawal symptoms.

“I start to feel like there is something missing, so I try to paint something even if I don’t have that much inspiration,” he said.

He said that his parent’s support won his big break earlier this year when his mother, an avid supporter, took his work to her place of employment.

“My mother, a clerk at the Wynberg Police Station, started taking my work with her.

By a stroke of luck, my artwork captured an art lover who connected me with a collector from London.

The collector then asked for more of my work so for the last six months I have been working with him,” he said.

Gwaza said that he had received rave reviews for his work and the support he has received has had an impactful as an art form.

“Its an expensive hobby.”

“Canvases can cost as much as thousand rand, yet there are people who want free work, so the support has helped me a lot with stationery and the implements I need to improve my work,” he said.

He said that his dream is to travel to the United Kingdom to be exposed to more galleries and art studios.

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