Arts & Culture: Artist, DENG Ajuech – nak Telling South Sudan`s Story Though Artistic Paintings

By Kim Justine

[box] This portrait presents the emotional and spiritual connection I and many other victims of civil war retain with our separated families and loved ones.

Title – TUKO PAMOJA (we are Together)                                                                                                   Dimensions – 50 by 70 cm                                                                                                                              Medium – Paper Collage on Canvas with Acrylic                                                                                              Year – o1/02/14 price – $ 1000[/box]


South Sudan`s reputation and economy continue to bleed due to bouts affiliated to perennial corruption, ethnicity, anarchy orchestrated by avaricious radicals  and poor governance. The dissolute in the wheels of governance alongside those scheming to inherit the political pickings have doubled their ferocious cravings and are determined to drive the  young democracy the the rocks.

This has left many destitute populaces watching by the alleys hoping that the world could turn its elusive care to the harsh realities they are subjected to. I however query myself every day as to whether South Sudan`s innocent citizens are perpetually doomed to this truncated position where the elite youth shout at each other from  social media platforms and spread hate as if they are the reasons for their lot? Can the youth do something meaningful to make the life of each other better or better still be the elements of the much needed transformation back home?

I’m glad that many who managed to escape the  warring nation  have devoted themselves to study which is a rung in the right direction. It is however the story of one gentleman we grew up with at Kakuma refugee camp in Turkana – Kenya that gripped my eye. While many fund raised and broke their backs to do the so called heavy courses like the engineering’s of this world in the University; no offense to you engineer, one Deng Ajuech – nak decided to further his gift of art painting with an agenda to tell the story of South Sudan to the world.

[box] INSPIRATION – This is a self potrait. It is birthed from reflections of what I went through as a child. I fled my country leaving my parents behind.It tells a story of how I grew up in a new world away from my mother. Struggling and facing the struggles of this world all alone and in a forsaken refugee camp. The pains of seeing more children now in South Sudan, almost going through what I went through due to civil war inflicted upon them can leave one feeling helpless. It is such moments that call for making peace within me. Most often, our minds easily tend to drift to dark thoughts that in turn affect our outer world. Title – Inner Piece Dimensions – 40 by 60 cm Medium – Paper Collage on canvas with acrylic Year – 03/01/2015 Price – $ 1000ntent goes hereent goes here[/box]

    When I spoke to him at java coffee shop at the Junction Mall – Nairobi on Thursday last week, Deng told me that his art is motivated by his life experiences as a victim of civil war and by the  happenings in the African continent; a continent that is tipped towards the edge by the day owing to its debauched politics.

I was enthused to go through some of his arts that told the story of his childhood pain and that of many of us, victims of civil war. We had to separate with our parents at tender ages. His art is basically made from paper collage on canvas and painted in acrylic paint. One of his pieces (see above) reminded me of childhood friends we played with in the village back home but  are no longer with us today. They were conscripted to the war effort and naively died at the battle front determined to redeem our people from the dogmatic Arab rule; and they did.

The art however presented me the timeless and infinite connection we have with our separated loved ones. Those dead or alive. The chef-oeuvre (masterpiece) sells at $ 1000 dollars only.
Deng`s vision is to engage the world through his art with an aim to find support for many gifted south Sudanese artist. He wishes to establish art galleries that will feature local arts from every corner of the country (South Sudan) thus attract the world to our lovely home land, South Sudan.
Engage him at @Deng Ajuech – nak – Facebook page.


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