Kudzanai Chiurai

Exploring Narcisisstic Rage in the Dying To Be Men Series

Contemporary African Art Collection - The Jean Pigozzi Collection

The Minister of Defence (2009) by Kudzanai ChiuraiContemporary African Art Collection - The Jean Pigozzi Collection

Kudzanai Chiurai’s (born in 1981, Zimbabwe) scathing theatrical compositions about African power and corruption have won him a growing following. 

Born one year after Zimbawe’s emergence from white-ruled Rhodesia – Chiurai’s early work focused on the political, economic and social strife in his homeland.

The Minister of Finance (2009) by Kudzanai ChiuraiContemporary African Art Collection - The Jean Pigozzi Collection

In his series Dying to be Men Kudzanai Chiurai explores the world of African politics and the performative guise of its leaders. 

For this series, Chiurai created a set of staged  photographs depicting  exaggerated stereotypes of African government ministers. 

The Minister of Health (2009) by Kudzanai ChiuraiContemporary African Art Collection - The Jean Pigozzi Collection

The ministers portrayed by Chiurai are all very caricatural.

Some of these government officials are made to look like pimps with a lot of bling and others look like experts in their fields like this minister of health but also wear the marks of traditional ritual practices and magic.

The Minister of Arts and Culture (2009) by Kudzanai ChiuraiContemporary African Art Collection - The Jean Pigozzi Collection

The Minister of Arts and Culture

"Chiurai plays on the archetypal male image of golden era hip hop. Looking off-camera the Minister stands erect and self-assured.

In his hand is a boombox, an oversized radio, and he is wearing oversized sunglasses, oversized jewellery and has oversized ambition"  - Nolan Dennis

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