Cyrus Kabiru (Kenyan, born 1980)
Blue Mamba, 2020
Signed ‘Ckabiru’ (lower right, on mudguard)
Mixed media sculpture
160 x 165 x 25 cm
Ksh 800,000 – 1,300,000
(US$) 7,750 – 12,650
Provenance: direct from the artist

Sold Ksh 821,800

Assembled from parts of old bicycles and junk material, Cyrus Kabiru’s new series of composite, fantastical sculptures pay homage to the Black Mamba bicycle. Kabiru explains that these bicycles used to be ubiquitous objects, found in nearly every Kenyan household, but are now disappearing – increasingly replaced by motorbikes. In his reimagined Black Mambas, and in a documentary made by Kabiru, “The End of Black Mamba”, a story is constructed that ties together a consideration of bodies and work, memory and futurity.

Kabiru is a founder of Art Orodha Kenya, a contemporary visual art centre located in Thika that provides support to emerging artists and which opened in 2020. By providing studio spaces to rent, classes and exhibitions, the centre seeks to create a conducive art practice environment and a platform to nurture young artists, as well as aiming to develop local audiences through a programme of public art education initiatives.

All of the proceeds of this sale (inclusive of auction commission) will go to the Art Orodha Centre set up by Cyrus Kabiru to support emerging artists.