Geoffrey Mukasa (Ugandan, 1954-2009)
Still Life, 2000
Signed ‘Mukasa 2000’ (lower right)
Collage, paint and gold leaf on paper
30 x 25cm
Sold Ksh 399,160
Provenance: Klaus Betz collection
Geoffrey Mukasa was born in 1954 to one of Uganda’s most prominent doctors. Many people expected Mukasa to follow his father’s footsteps but the murder of his father during Idi Amin’s coup brought drastic changes to his life; he left Uganda and began studying art.
Mukasa travelled to India to study at Lucknow University, graduating in 1984. India greatly inspired Mukasa, exposing him to European and Indian aesthetic values. He threw himself into his work with vigour, focusing mainly on human relationships with the environment, interactions between humans and every day living. In the early 1990s, upon returning to Uganda, Mukasa became a key figure in the movement to revive cultural life in Uganda. This cultural movement was seen as a unifying force and an inspiration for the nation’s recovery from years of military dictatorship.
Mukasa’s oldest friends said that he began making collages in his early years as an artist because there were no classic art materials to be purchased in Kampala. He wanted to create works of art, so he initially used magazines to create collages and only later when materials were available, did he begin to paint large canvases.