The 2016 winner of the Thapong Artist of the Year Awards (TAYA), Thato Nkawana will host an art exhibition, Art from Heart, at the Alliance Française in Gaborone on November 27, 2020.
The charity exhibition is meant to raise awareness about mental health. It is an initiative of Nkawana and spouse, Mayann Nkawana. The art exhibition features 2, 000 A5 drawings and paintings from the couple’s gallery.
“We have managed to complete 2,000 works and they will benefit people who have been mentally affected by the coronavirus (COVID-19). We realised that a lot of people are sidelined when it comes to issues of mental health. We tend to focus on how people are starving and losing jobs because of COVID-19, but we forget the mental health aspect. A lot of people are suffering from anxiety and depression, so we decided to do an exhibition to benefit this often overlooked issue,” he told Arts & Culture.
Nkawana also announced that the profits of the exhibition would be donated to a Gaborone Rehabilitation and Emergency Centre. He added that the works that are mostly A5 drawings would cost P150 so that Batswana could afford them. “We want them to buy and support this initiative because they are
The Nkawana couple revealed they worked together on the artworks since the first lockdown and were now ready to exhibit. He said he worked on more than 50% of the artworks while his better half worked on the remainder. Nkawana said the exhibition would run for three days from November 27 to 28 and 30.
As images of birds dominate the couple’s artworks, it was explained the concept behind this was inspired by the lockdown when people could not move about and birds being the only thing they could see.
“Birds gave us courage to achieve our target of making 2,000 pieces,” he said. Nkawana pointed out that they also have abstract artwork for therapy. “As one strokes their brush all over the canvas and plays with different colours of paint this helps to soothe the mind,” he expressed.
Nkawana said all their artworks communicate and the intention is for people to get the message.