Yvonne Ncube, Showbiz Correspondent
The National Gallery of Zimbabwe is seeking donations to buy the late veteran artist Rashid Mohamed Jogee’s house, which has been put up for sale, to keep the late visual artist’s dream alive.
Affectionately known as Kudakwashe, Rashidi, Mdala, Member, Qhawe or Pamperi, Jogee, who hugged late former President Robert Mugabe in the mid-1990s, died last year at his home after a short illness.
Jogee worked from his home at 144 Fort Street in Bulawayo.
After his death, he received a National Arts Merit Award Legends @ 40 trophy for his contribution to the art scene in Zimbabwe.
According to an announcement by local real estate agency Bechak Real Estate on their Facebook page, the asking price for the house is US$125,000.
“Townhouse – ideal Bulawayo to be converted into, a hybrid bar/cafe, hardware store, restaurant, grocery store. It is located along Fort Street. Fort Street is the busiest road in Bulawayo’s CBD. Size of the yard 800m2. $125,000 asking price,” read the listing.
The director of the National Gallery of Zimbabwe, Raphael Chikukwa, told Chronicle Showbiz that the decision was to make it an artistic home.
“As an art gallery, we would like to preserve the late Raphael Jogee’s home for art. However, the house has been put up for sale and we are looking to buy it. We are currently raising funds to do so and we call on anyone with mutual philanthropy to come forward and help us achieve this goal. Jogee had been part of our family for the longest time, so we felt it was fitting to do this in his honor,” Chikukwa said.
He said Jogee was passionate about art and devoted most of his life to it.
“He was part of Cont Mhlanga’s film called Amakorokoza. We are also at a stage where we think it is important for Zimbabwean artists and Jogee’s family, so much so that his dream of keeping the arts alive can be realized and sustained.
“We saw fit to raise funds so that we could make this an artists’ residence and his legacy could be passed on in his home,” Chikukwa said.
Born in Bulawayo on February 11, 1951, Rashid Mohamed Jogee began painting at the age of 19. He studied at the Mzilikazi Arts Center and then at the Bulawayo Technical College. He is one of Zimbabwe’s most independent and original artists, who has worked in a variety of styles and techniques.
Jogee has had over 48 exhibitions in Zimbabwe, South Africa, Botswana, Mozambique, Kenya, England, USA, Denmark, Germany and Sweden. In 2013, he represented Zimbabwe at the Venice Biennale.
Jogee has facilitated numerous workshops in Bulawayo, Murewa, Cyrene, Marondera and Thapong, Botswana. His work has also featured in numerous publications in Botswana, Namibia, Mozambique, Zambia and Zimbabwe.
Jogee has taught at Mzilikazi Arts and Craft Center as well as Founders High School in Bulawayo, imparting knowledge and nurturing young talent in the city of Bulawayo – @SeehYvonn