[ISEA2018] Artist Statement: Claire Dongo — The Many Faces of Bob

Artist Statement

Other Realities sub-programme

This piece highlights the social commentary on the political life of Robert Mugabe – an international icon (of sorts) – from Hero to Villain. This is showcased in the various different portraits that embody the many faces he carried in the different parts of his political life (himself, the people around him (such as his family, his allies) & the socio-economic effects of his political decisions). The portraits will be animated, made up of a collage of still images and videos, his journey is so rich in great visuals. This will be further complimented by short sound bites of his speeches and instrumental music that defined the different eras so to speak, such as the political jingles. I have divided his political life into 4 main sections: from the 1960s-80s he was the man of the people, the ultimate hero; in the 90s he was the true darling son of the West, who was slowly starting to rebel; from 2000 to 2016 he was the villain that people didn’t see coming and he became the man who completely sucked the life out of the “Breadbasket of Africa”; & 2017, where he was the ultimate villain and dictator who everyone gravely disliked.

  • Claire Dongo is a Zimbabwean digital artist, lecturer and  PhD student in Digital Arts at the University of KwaZulu-Natal. She has more than 10 years’ working experience in the digital arts industry. She graduated from Wits University with a Master’s degree in Digital Arts in 2015, and while at Wits, produced an award-winning short animated film “Amoeba”. Claire is a former student and lecturer at the Zimbabwe Institute of Vigital Arts (ZIVA), one of the very few digital art schools in Zimbabwe.          be.net/clairedongo