At the beginning of this month I was really pleased to see a post about an art competition in my Instagram feed. The competition was by BIC to produce some artwork about Africa. This really piqued my interest on so many levels. Competitions are cool because they give you the opportunity to push yourself a little harder and inevitably you always end up with artwork that is better than usual. The prize in this competition was good, however a competition like this isn’t about the prize; its about leveling up your game. Not to mention that this competition had an interesting constraint of only using BIC pens. Given this unique set of conditions I knew I was all in.
The coolest thing about this competition is that it’s all about Africa by Africans. I love this concept because it spotlights what Africans can do with just a piece of paper and a BIC pen. And in all honesty, as an artist that’s all you should need. The bare basics to produce something awesome.
Putting Africa at the forefront forces the artist to really consider what Africa is all about. It’s got such a compelling history, that you can not look upon Africa and not have an opinion. We know Africa to be the birth place of mankind, yet Africa has never been given the full respect she deserves. The visuals of Africa are stunning and the stories are intriguing, and they deserve to be communicated by art.
Fortunately the competition organizers decided to show all art submissions on their website at https://www.bicartmaster.com/ . This is great because you get to see how good the competition is before submitting your own work.
I have to admit, we have got some serious talent here in Africa. I didn’t realize just how good some of the guys are, especially in North Africa. Having said that I must say that I was slightly disappointed to see people drawing mostly faces. And while I do love seeing those, drawing portraits are more about illustration than art. I’ve always considered art as having something important to say about world. It allows us contemplate our lot in life, spurring our mind and rattling our perceptions. Having this notion of what art is, I attempted to say something with my submissions.
So far yet so close
Designed to demonstrate my realistic drawing skill so that I’d can be seen as on par with my peers. The idea here is that you can be as far from Africa as possible for example you can be a vegan woman living in the USA, yet we still all come from Africa.
Designed to demonstrate my artistic and design skill. This piece highlights many of my beliefs I have as Indian born in Africa. I believe Veganism, Bitcoin and Ahimsa are the things that will take Africa in to the future.
A Face of Ideas
Designed to demonstrate my artistic and design skill. I love the idea that a mask displays an identity. Here, African face paint is used to describe important ideas of the modern African expressing those ideas in the face paint.
I would say these ideas are somewhat artistic, and they do communicate some important ideas. The ideas aren’t stitched together as a cohesive whole, but I haven’t produced actual art in a long time so I’m a little rusty.
I will definitely say that I’m pleased with how these turned out. I pushed harder on these given the short amount of time I had, and I these turned out great. I’m really proud of them and I had so much fun doing these. I would really love to be in a position to create art forever. The Universe willing, that’s exactly what will happen!