Artist Statement

Kibera is the largest slum in Nairobi, Kenya and home to an estimated 500,000 to 800,000 residents who struggle with poverty. There are no opportunities for creative expression or development of artistic talent in most Kenyan schools, and opportunities to participate in art for Kibera children and youth are extremely limited, despite a plethora of artistic talent. The Uweza Art Gallery opened in 2013 to provide art students with their own space and materials to paint and market their artwork, which is sold online, at the gallery, and through events and exhibitions. As of 2018, the gallery is currently self-sustaining through sales of artwork. Several of the artists have been able to pay the entirety of their primary, high school and post-secondary education through the sales of their artwork, and many of the older artists are able to fully support themselves through their sales. Uweza Art Gallery also hosts art classes for children from Kibera twice a week.

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