YOUTHS are vital to the future survival of the National Gallery and the contemporary art and visual heritage centre will continue to add more programmes that speak to the youth in a bid to rejuvenate its cultural vibrancy, Butholezwe Kgosi Nyathi, the director, has said.
To that end, the National Gallery in Bulawayo has employed digital programming for its exhibitions in addition to strengthening its social media platforms as part of efforts to appeal to an ever growing youthful audience.
“We endeavour to make the National Art Gallery a space that is accessible to everyone and that audience includes the youth so going forward we will have more programmes that speak to the youth.
“You will find that more people, particularly the youth, are heavily reliant on technology thus we will be launching more programmes with digital content for exhibitions in addition to strengthening our social media platforms as part of efforts to appeal to the youthful audience,” said Nyathi.
The National Gallery will be launching the Entities and Subjects Exhibition together with the official opening of the Virtual Gallery Tour during the Friday Late edition that runs for free.
Nyathi describes the Entities and Subjects Exhibition as a platform that seeks to appreciate artists who have made artworks from everyday objects into artistic pieces.
Some of the pieces on exhibition, according to Nyathi, speak to the environmentalism agenda — concern about and action aimed at protecting the environment — promoted by the Government.
The Friday Late Editions also seeks to embrace the different artistic genres that will be on show at the gallery and they include dance, singing, film screening and a showcase of traditional food.
“We are a central and culturally creative space and we saw it fit to allow different artistic genres to find expression in this building.
“The Virtual Gallery Tour that is being launched today will enable people to tour all the public spaces of the gallery online whenever and wherever they are for free,” said Nyathi.
Felistas Sibanda, a local university student said: “I have never been to the gallery before as I always considered it to be a fancy place that doesn’t cater for young people but I think now that it’s accommodating the youth, I will definitely give it a try.”
Since Nyathi took over as the National Gallery boss, he has made inroads in turning it into a vibrant space and it recently played host to the Queen Loziba Lecture.
Queen Loziba was a senior queen in the Ndebele Kingdom and the lecture was meant to promote female narratives and profiling powerful historical figures.