Collecting the Nation
An exhibition of reproductions from the National Art Gallery of Namibia Permanent Collection will be showing at the Maria Mwengere Centre in Rundu from 24 March 2017 until 26 May 2017.
The mandate of the National Art Gallery of Namibia (NAGN) is to serve the Namibian nation as a whole. This involves decentralizing activities from the Namibian capital of Windhoek and extending our services into the regions. As such, the NAGN mobile exhibition programme is designed to bring parts of the NAGN Permanent Collection to the regions as an educational resource, as well as to offer opportunities to enjoy an art exhibition and encourage arts appreciation.
As 2017 hosts another year of the Bank Windhoek Triennial, a nationwide competition, Collecting the Nation showcases reproductions of artworks from past Bank Windhoek Triennial participants and winners which have been collected by the NAGN. The Bank Windhoek Triennial encourages national participation in Namibia’s largest visual arts exhibition, and has yielded exceptional results showcasing the best of Namibian arts and crafts.
The permanent collection of the NAGN houses a large variety of works collected from the inception of the gallery as an institution in 2005. The mandate of the NAGN is to collect, preserve, study, exhibit and stimulate appreciation for and advance knowledge of works of art that collectively represent the broadest spectrum of human achievement at the highest level of quality, all in the service of the public and in accordance with the highest professional standards. The Permanent Collection of the NAGN echoes this mandate, striving to preserve and exhibit works that show the artistic talent in Namibia, as well as that offer voices to issues and themes pertaining to Namibian society. It is therefore fitting that some of the works of past Bank Windhoek Triennial winners and participants exist in this collection.
From the printmaking by Kabelo Kim Modise to the sculpture by Erik Schnack, the selection of artworks in Collecting the Nation reveals the variety of media embraced by Namibian artists. Paul Kiddo’s realist painting of the Christuskirche shows the merit and skill of the artist in rendering intricate detail, while Chris Snyman’s Guardian Angel emotively gestures toward bold and abstract expressions. Ceramicist Sarie Maritz and basket weaver Elizabeth Modise reflect the Bank Windhoek Triennial as an exhibition thus far inclusive of exceptionally crafted products. Artistic and conceptual merit is evident in the artworks and craft collected from the Bank Windhoek Triennial and placed into the NAGN Permanent Collection.
Like the Bank Windhoek Triennial, The NAGN Permanent Collection is as varied as our society is diverse, being made up of over 300 artworks, from works by around 150 artists. This collection is housed in the NAGN storage, and is shown throughout the annual schedule in sections in exhibitions in the gallery curated around various themes.