While many artists find it difficult to make a living out of art in Botswana, a 24-year-old Lamorena Giri from Natale village has revealed that pursuing fine art full time has given him time to explore the industry.
In an interview with Arts & Culture, Giri said he was confident about his artistic talent no wonder he decided to pursue fine art full time. He added that he chose the kind of art that is easy to explore at the same time enabling him to easily put food on the table.
He said fine art is marketable and easier to produce especially when the materials are available locally.
“I use a variety of materials to make my art but I mostly use pencils, acrylic and oil paints. I also use other materials like pen and charcoal because art is broad so when it comes to materials I don’t want to limit myself,” he said.
Looking back, Giri explained that he always had passion for art at tender age so school played a major role in sharpening his skills.
This young talent also said he drew inspiration from artists who are doing the same art as him but with better exposure and experience. Giri said each of his artworks had a different meaning and he went through different emotions when creating them.
Even though Giri is very talented, just like other young talents he struggled to gain recognition he deserved. He said at first it was hard for people or the public to actually see or appreciate his work because they didn’t know him. However, that did not demoralise him but rather pushed him to work his way up. Now that the public sees and appreciates his work, its support had been nothing but golden. “Themes of my work vary depending on the motive of the current works because I exhibit a lot. I often cover every possible theme so that whenever a new exhibition arises I just pick from the bunch of artworks I have. I mostly stay in Francistown so that is where I’m based,” he said.
The fine artist who is a member of Thapong Visual Arts Centre noted that he had exhibited in various art exhibitions to get the necessary exposure. He said that one of the pinpoint exhibitions he was glad to be part of was the three day exhibition of the annual Francistown Arts Meeting (FAM)
“I had a lot of challenges in my career some of them being a saturated market, late payments by customers, long distance transportation of artworks and the outbreak of COVID-19 that has had a major impact in my craft.
So, I would not say I achieved as much as I would love to but I have a good career run so far. I sold more than hundred artworks and some of them to public figures. It makes me happy that more than hundred people wake up to see my work in their walls and smile,” he said.