Visual art has has always been famed male-dominated.
But now, a wind of change is blowing as more women are coming out to claim their spaces.
Tapiwa Chilembo is one woman re-writing the age-old narrative. She is now becoming one of the established names in the business.
“I am [involved] in several forms of art, including fashion designing, painting and teaching,” says the mother-of-one.
Chilembo embraced the profession after being intrigued by art and paintings.
“Looking at different paintings, I would always be inspired by the scenarios and different forms of ar. So, I decided to learn the skill of painting which wasn’t difficult as I already had a background as a fashion designer,” she says.
The up-and-coming visual artist says she feels painting is an excellent way to release ones emotions as it illustrates different worldly things.
But how did she find herself in fashion designing?
Chilembo has been a runway show admirer for some time.
“I was motivated by what the clothing designers would create as exhibited by models in fashion shows and decided to go for some training at a tailoring school back in 2017,” she recalls.
The artist says after she learnt the basics, she taught herself new techniques in sewing and craft making.
Now Chilembo makes some sales from her designs. She, however, says it is not an easy field for a woman because oftentimes they are underrated to do a good job as a man would.
Chilembo adds that visual art is also mentally challenging.
“But despite that, I always push myself to do better and let my creativity speak for itself,” says the artist.
She is currently making murals in homes and institutional places to add colour and variety to life.
Chilembo finds painting financially rewarding as it affords her to put food on her table.
“I afford my needs and wants. I can encourage a girl child to take art as a full-time occupation if she is passionate about it. With some hard work, one can achieve great things,” she says.
Evelyn Chisambiro, another female visual artist who has just discovered her talent, says for a woman to make it in this industry, one needs to be unique and bring out their own style.
She says: “I actually think being female is an advantage, given that you have a softer side that comes with being a woman. Those emotions are important in relating to a subject.
“Already, colours are full of emotion and art is processing all those hues and different shades into telling a story on a canvas other people can relate to.”