The Artist and His Message
Rubem, a student of mine who painted the mural on the library, invited me to visit his workshop and take some photos of his art for him to post online. His workshop is located in a closet hidden in the back of the Casa da Cultura about a five minute walk from our house.
Rubem explained how he tries to depict in his artwork the poverty and hardships the average person faces in Mozambique. The three paintings with women above depict the struggle for Mozambican women in today’s society. Specifically, how gender roles are making it near impossible for women to gain respect in the community and become leaders in Mozambique.
Today, Rubem talked at length (in English!) about how he was unhappy the nature of the visit of President of Mozambique Guebuza in Alto Molocue. Rubem was asked by the local government to paint a portrait of Guebuza to give to the President. You’d think that he would like to be there when the President receives the artwork… Not Rubem. He told me he tries to avoid political rallies of any kind because they always glorify the positive work of the government but there is never any discussion of the real issues and struggles of the people.
According to Rubem, his outlet and his voice are through his art, and he hopes that some day, he will be able to spread his message throughout Mozambique so that the voice of the average Mozambican, will be heard.