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Biography of Bernard TAKAWIRA BERNARD

Zimbabwe > Arts : Bernard TAKAWIRA BERNARD

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Biography :

Bernard Takawira (1945-1997) was a Zimbabwean sculptor.

Bernard Takawira born in 1945 in Nyanga and died in 1997 . Bernard hesitated for a long time before becoming a full time artist. Bernard felt an emptiness inside him, a vital need that he initially tried to fulfil through religion and became a Christian even thought about becoming a priest. In 1967 Bernard learnt how to carve at the Vukutu open-air workshop with his brother John .

For the next two years Bernard felt overshadowed by his brother John's  creative genius and left to study agricultural engineer. Until Independence Bernard only carved in his spare time. It was only at the beginning of 1980 that he decided to devote all his time to his sculpture, in order to fully express his inner anguish through stone.

Bernard' s sculptures reflect the artist will to surpass himself, to force the stone to render the dual nature of life - joy and suffering, wisdom and madness, youth and age and beauty despite the hardships of life. From the diversity of colours and the contrast between polished and rough edges to the expression of the eyes, everything in Bernard's sculpture combines to make us realise that, in the final analysis, it is essential to take contradictions into account.

Bernard received on several occasions the first prize from the National Gallery of Zimbabwe for his sculpture. Bernard was now a widely recognised artist and remains uncompromising. "Sculpting is not a train station, it is the journey itsel," says Bernard.

A sculptor of international repute who had exhibited in Africa, Britain, New Zealand, Sweden, Italy, Austria and many other parts of the world.

Last update : 06/10/2007

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