Expressing the roots of his cultural heritage
Azwimpheleli Magoro lives at Muledane near Thohoyandou. His love for carving started in primary school where he made wooden spoons, jugs and knives from soft indigenous woods with chisels made out of sharpened bicycle spokes and screw drivers. During his youth he decided to leave school and spent his time as a shepherd in the bush. He learnt to observe nature carefully and enjoyed hunting. After four years in the bush, he decided to go back to school and started to prove himself in art and craft classes.
Most of his work depicts traditional themes from Venda cultural life. According to Azwi, we have to balance between the past and the present life. Time and money have an increasing influence even on art. Still, he wants to express through his sculptures the roots of his cultural heritage and to remind people of our rich tradition and history.
National and international recognition
Nowadays Azwi's work is recognized inside and outside of South Africa. Most of his sculptures can be found in private collections, but are also housed in the collections at the University of SA, Pretoria, the Johannesburg Art Gallery, the Olievenhuis Museum, Bloemfontein, the University of Zululand, the SA Embassy in Sibasa, the Ethnographical Museum, Rotterdam, Netherlands, as well as different places in Germany, The Netherlands, Japan, England and the USA.
His sculpture “Fighting is not a solution” was selected by the Brett Kebble Arts Award in 2004 and is now exhibited at the reception hall of South African Breweries in Sandton, Johannesburg. The idea behind this sculpture is to discourage the conflicts among South Africans, but rather sit down in peace and harmony to negotiate so that we can understand one another.
Text source: Stefan Kramer
Azwi can be visited at his home place in Muledane near Thohoyandouwhere he can familiarize visitors with his sculptures and art work.
Tel +27(0)83 475 3225
P.O.Box 42 81
Muledane 0950 (near Thohoyandou)