Zimbabwe Arts and Culture
Currency: Zimbabwe Dollar (ZWD / ZWL)
Exchange rate: 1 euro – 438.67 ZWD / ZWL dollar (12/2020)
Time zone: UCT + 1
Country code (phone): 00263
Climate (for capital): subtropical
The pride in its own rich craft traditions and political independence promoted cultural life after 1980. In addition, there was the education of children and young people based on international standards.
According to politicsezine, Zimbabwe had a vibrant and creative cultural scene in the 1980’s and 1990’s – one of the most diverse on the continent. This was particularly true of literature, music, and sculpture.
Zimbabwean artists were honored with numerous international prizes and were role models for young people in the country. These included well-known writers such as Yvonne Vera and Chenjerai Hove – their works were read by many people in Zimbabwe; both were recognized in Europe and North America and have already passed away.
The multifaceted Zimbabwean literary scene also included Charles Mugoshi, Shimmer Chinodya or Christopher Mlalazi, Tendai Huchu, Tsitsi Dangarembga and, more recently, No Violet Bulawayo, Petina Gappah and Novuyo Rosa Tshuma. Some of the novels by these authors have been translated into German.
The informative website Reading Zimbabwe provides an overview of non-fiction, children’s and youth books as well as fiction. It presents a selection of interesting literature. Zimbabwean children’s books reflected historical developments and social changes.
Zimbabwean stone sculptors such as Colleen Madamombe, Agnes Nyanhongo, Dominic Benhura and Joe Mutasa presented their works locally and in highly regarded exhibitions in German and European cities. In the meantime, many galleries and workshops have been closed due to the economic and political problems. Some recognized stone sculptors have died of AIDS, others have emigrated. Artists who specialize in other working techniques, such as drawings and illustrations, such as Kunyalala Ndlovu, aka Fort Rixon, are also in South Africa. Fled there tooKudzanai Chiurai. Well-known young artists include Portia Zvavahera, Gareth Nyandoro and Mishek Masamvu. Owen Maseko, who discussed the Gukurahundi massacre among other things, repeatedly had problems exhibiting his art.
Zimbabwean musician / -Innen as Stella Chiweshe, Thomas Mapfumo and Oliver Mtukudzi, who in January 2019 died were celebrated on world tours. Young musicians like Nobuntu, Prudence Mabhena and the rap artist Awa also occasionally perform in Europe or North America. In Zimbabwe itself, musicians have been walking a fine line between artistic innovation and state control for years.
After political independence in 1980, professional theater projects such as the Amakhosi Theater flourished. There were some international productions. Even documentaries and feature films wanted socio-changing act. The artistic work with children and adolescents, including through song and dance, is dedicated to Iyasa that internationally recognized. Basically the dance changed.
However, artists’ scope for development and action was severely restricted, particularly due to the political and economic crisis from 2000 onwards. Since then, the tension between art and politics has been fraught with conflict. Politically or historically relevant pieces were banned. Arcades and independent cultural centers were targeted by the secret service. Many well-known artists are threatened with arrest and have been forced to go into exile. Some come to Europe temporarily in order to be able to work on new works without threats at the invitation of cultural institutes.
Although there are now cultural festivals again, such as the HIFA Festival and SHOKO Festival, many young artists are extremely careful in their choice of topics. Some perform in South Africa, others relocate their artistic activities to the Internet, including comedians and satirists, the Magamba Network is internationally known. In addition to Zimbabwean actors, the UN organization UNESCO took part in the debate on the cultural situation in 2012; the main focus was on the culture industry. The Zimbabwean government submitted its last report to UNESCO about the culture in the country 2016. In June 2015, individual Zimbabwean artists exhibited their works at the Venice Art Biennale, and in 2017, 2018 and 2019 officially selected works of art from Zimbabwe were also presented there.