Gakonga is an artist who came from humble beginnings, however the magic of life always inspires him to capture life through colours. He was born in a small village near the foot of Mount Kilimanjaro.
As a young boy Gakonga lived in a farm in a village where there was not much reprieve from the monotony of farming, however it was when his father would leave the farm now-and-then when Gakonga would experiment with plant dye's and sea shells on his fathers mud hut (Thingira Wa Muthee).
At the time he thought it was just a menial youthful hobby inspired by the beauty of Kenya. He would look up and see the sun setting, realising he had become lost in the art and creating, (he would run back to the field to finish off his duties in the farm before his dad got home, but still beaming with joy from the work he had created). Little did he knew art would be his calling and his life long passion. His greatest gift is painting and now inspiring others to capture the beauty and the colours of his homeland, Kenya.
Gakonga's work let's the beautiful colours dance across the blank white paper bringing joy to the lifeless page, as he captures the burning gold and reds of a dying sunset and the warm exuberant colours of the tribal dances. Song's and dance are all part of Kenyan culture and every painting has its own joyful rhythm, that will bring a smile to your face and a warmth to your heart.
Gakonga comes from a humble background from a place in Kenya most people have never heard of, however he followed his heart and his art brought him out (of Kenya) to England in the mid 90s.
In the year 2000 Gakonga was trained to become an artist in education and since then he has worked with over 300 schools across the United Kingdom. He has also done many commissions including one for penguin books which was featured on the cover of the book titled 'The Penguin Book of Modern African Poetry - by Gerald Moore. He was also recognised for his talent by Her Majesty the Queen and was invited for a tea at the Marlborough House.
People say that in life you write your own story but Gakonga has never written his, and instead he continues to tell and share his story though his painting, undoubtedly a picture tells the story of a thousand words.
Every day is precious.
Artist in Education