Art Auction East Africa 2022 Lot 5 Doreen Mandawa

Doreen Mandawa (Tanzanian, born 1929- 2021)
School Girl, 1974

Signed ‘D. Waithilingam Gibson 74’ (lower left)
Oil on board
60.5 x 60.5 cm
Ksh 265,000 – 530,000
(US$) 2,000 – 4,000
Provenance: private collection
Sold Ksh 633,960

Born in Scotland in 1929, Doreen Mandawa studied art at the Sunderland College of Art from 1959. She spent a number of years active in anti-apartheid campaigns and the human rights struggle in England before moving to Tanzania with her family in 1964, where Mandawa lived and worked as a prolific painter and educator until her death in 2021. 

Mandawa has become well regarded for her impressionistic paintings: she has exhibited frequently in Dar es Salaam, as well as in Kenya, Canada and the UK. In 2019 a retrospective of her work was held at the National Museum of Tanzania, to mark both her and the museum’s 90th year. This is one of Mandawa’s first paintings and a favourite of hers. She signed it using her first husband’s surname and her maiden name Waithilingam Gibson. She later signed as Doreen Mandawa.