About the part that art plays in a globalising society

Framer Framed

Nathan Omiel & Robinah Nansubuga

Nathan Omiel

‘If you talk to the image, and you talk to the picture, and you talk to the photo, in the end the greatest thing is the image.’

Nathan Omiel was a participating artist in the Framer Framed group exhibition Simuda Nyuma – Forward Ever Backward Never in 2015, curated by curated by Robinah Nansubuga and Andrea Stultiens. For the exhibition, Omiel made a series of painted portraits of Ham Mukasa, loosely based on available photographic portraits. He said of the process: ‘It is very complex because we are dealing with Ham Mukasa, who stood in a time when we saw a transition starting from informal education to formal education. I do not have much history to make you actually understand if during the informal education drawing was a part of that. Within the clans you had people who did specific things. So for a royal to be painting or drawing, that was not really important. But education came in through the royal class because they were the first privileged people, the first people to get actual education so that the chiefs would be benefiting… I am considering that drawing must have been a language of appeal, since most of these youngsters did not understand English by then. If I wanted to point out that this is a woman in English and you call her mukazi in Luganda, I would have to draw and say Mukazi – Woman.’


Exhibition: Simuda Nyuma - Forward Ever Backward Never

A contemporary interpretation of missing documents in an Ugandan archive of Ham Mukasa. Curated by Robinah Nansubug and Andrea Stultiens