A book release in honour of painters in Congo’s coastal city of Pointe Noire.
The event recently held brought together 97 artists who were each honoured with a copy of the book which contains a collection of their different paintings.
According to the author of the book, painters not only in the city but also across the country face challenges but despite this, their artistic work has to be appreciated.
This is what Yves Dubois, the author of the book said:
“I found that there were a lot of young people. I can give you some names, young people who are between 20 and 23 years old… Marvel, Bamana and those that lack training. So it would be necessary, as the Minister of Culture has said, that there is training from professionals, that there are international meetings. I realized that there are young people who are quite talented. But they lack training. Young people who live in the suburbs but deserve better than that.”
He however said there are several other painters in the city not included in the book who are quite talented but who really need more training in their craft.
The country’s Minister of Arts and Culture commended the publication of the book, the content and the style used to pay tribute to the painters, and admitted that the government had indeed a role to play in supporting their craft.
“Yes we have an obligation to assist you, we have an obligation to provide you with our support. As far as the ministry is concerned, we are in the process of putting in place a legal framework that would allow us to solve a number of problems because if we are to provide assistance to our artists it must be done in a very specific framework,” said Dieudonné Moyongo, Congo’s Minister of Arts and Culture.
Among the painters included in this book, are a group of sapeurs, who say they earn their living through the craft of painting. Sapeurs, quite popular in this region are known for their flashy looks, often spending a fortune on their attire.
Despite the different challenges they face, these painters can only remain optimistic that their deplorable conditions will change and that the economic crisis in the country will soon end to allow them live a life they truly deserve through their art.