Senior Art Exhibit 2007 | Pepperdine University | Seaver College

Senior Art Exhibit 2007

Mushambi John Ngqabutho Mutuma

Great Zimbabwe or Dzimba Dzemabwe are the ruins of an ancient African city located in present-day Zimbabwe built in the 11th Century. This expanse that covers 1,800 acres are both some of the oldest and largest ancient ruins in Africa. The Karanga tribe of the Shona people built this stone structure displaying their amazing skills in stone building. The city, which housed over 15,000 people, soon became a popular center for trading artifacts, which extended as far as Arabia and China.

Great Zimbabwe has always represented achievement, strength and honor to the Zimbabwean people throughout the ages, including colonialism, independence from the British and present-day.

As a Zimbabwean native, that makes up a large part of who I am. It is my home and my passion. Zimbabwe is engraved on my DNA and makes me unique. Great Zimbabwe is uniquely Zimbabwean. Others can neither claim it nor take it away. Zimbabwe has battled a lot over the last hundred years with colonialism, civil war and more recently a collapsed state, dilapidated economy, dictatorial rule and gross human rights violations. Despite all of that, Zimbabwe still has a source of pride and strength. Despite the troubles I face in my life, Zimbabwe cannot be removed from my being and my blood.

In every aspect of my life I have tried to inform others about my homeland whether in writing, public speaking or simply my pride. In these works I have attempted to rebuild Great Zimbabwe through my paintbrush. The structure you see there is the prominent cone figure of ruins. This symbol carries respect and responsibility. In each work I displayed that as well as Zimbabwe's distinctiveness with unique texture and surface quality. I fought to let my heart bleed out on the canvas and provide you a path to Zimbabwe and to who I am.

Zimbabwe has a place in me. That which cannot be removed. Upon viewing these works I hope you've seen into my heart and seen Zimbabwe in this paint. Seen her spirit, her strength, her history, her resilience and her beauty.

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