Zambian Art 1964 -1994 – a lost history

Ruth HartleyArt history, Feminism, Mpapa Gallery, Visual Arts, Zambia3 Comments

Mpapa Gallery, Women and Art in Zambia In 1984 when I started working at Mpapa Gallery with Joan Pilcher, Cynthia Zukas and Patrick Mweemba, there were many women making art, but few were Zambian and none were black. Most women artists were the expatriate wives of businessmen, diplomats and aid agency officials. Colonial domination of Zambian culture before 1964 is […]

The Shaping of my Art

Ruth Hartley Storytelling, Apartheid, Art Process, Creativity, m’Other Art, Mpapa Gallery, Poetry, Politics, Southern Africa, Visual Arts, Zambia2 Comments

The world hasn’t stopped turning in spite of the COVID-19 pandemic, but most people’s lives have been upended. It’s been a time for self-reflection for me as well as a time of tidying up files and boxes of photos. Some photos record my changing appearance, but the more interesting ones are those that detail how my art has altered and […]

Connections between art, politics, and change in South Africa and Zambia

Ruth Hartley Storytelling, Apartheid, Art Process, Colonialism, Creativity, Design, Education, Human rights, Identity, Imagination, Justice, Mpapa Gallery, Politics, Printmaking, Racism, South Africa, Southern Africa, Visual Arts, When I Was Bad, ZambiaLeave a Comment

Andrew Verster, the best teacher I had Andrew Verster died on Sunday 16th February 2020. In 1964, After graduating from Camberwell School of Art and Reading University, he taught me painting at the Michaelis School of Art, University of Cape Town. He was a wonderful teacher – one whom I will never forget because of his kindness and the attention […]

Lutanda Mwamba’s story, Mpapa Gallery and the Lechwe Trust Exhibition

Ruth HartleyArt Process, Creativity, Education, Mpapa Gallery, Printmaking, Southern Africa, Visual Arts, Zambia9 Comments

Teaching O level art at the ISL I was teaching O level art at the International School of Lusaka in 1982 when I first noticed a student called Lutanda Mwamba. He had a gift for drawing. I praised his work but he said he wanted to be an engineer. I didn’t argue. Life was hard then in Zambia particularly for […]

Flying backwards to yesterday and arriving in tomorrow’s world

Ruth HartleyBooks by Ruth Hartley, Creativity, Family, The Shaping of Water, Visual Arts, ZambiaLeave a Comment

Flying backwards to yesterday     Was I flying backwards into a nostalgic and unreal fantasy about a past life? Even now Zambia feels like home to me, the place closest to my heart where I feel most deeply rooted. I lived in Zambia for 22 years and my dream had always been to have a plot of land, build […]