This sculpture of a “Female African Buddha” is based on an idea from John from Starnberg, Germany. John had seen a sculpture of a buddha at a friends house and wanted something related as he has an interest in Buddhism. His concrete idea was “I want a statue of a Buddha made of carved hardwood. It should be about 90 cm tall and draw on a set of pictures I will provide. All Buddha’s I know are male and Asian. This one can be female and African, BUT must still capture essential facial expressions and hand gestures.“. John was in fact our first real client after some test drives of the concept. I got to know John when I was looking for an investor for my first StartUp almost twenty years ago. He was Partner at an investment firm at that time. I gave John a call to ask him what he thinks about the concept of the Urban Change Lab. While doing my elevator speech he responded: „I was looking for an artist to create something for me“. That is how this project started…
When I first met Naftal (one of our lead Artists on Urban Change Lab and the artist behind the sculpture shown yesterday) in Nairobi we touched on so many topics. Naftal is as talkative as me. We discussed the relation between arts and politics, what makes art to art, his experience as a lecturer in arts at university. But what still stuck in my mind after years is when I asked him about his kids. Naftal responded that he has 7 Kids. When I asked him if one of them is into arts as well he responded “All of them…”. Naftal drove me nuts in his first project, I could not understand at that time that a sculpture needs drying time while making. So it took almost 6 months to finish it. John, the client was and still is extremely happy about it. While Naftal was realizing the first Female African Buddha based on the idea of John from Starnberg people passed by and got an interest. Two wanted to buy it immediately but Naftal insisted that it’s already sold. In the course of the year he sold two other Female African Buddhas locally in Nairobi and made his living for his first year on Urban Change Lab out of it. Naftal, you are an amazing Artist!
More details on the Project page Buddha sculpture (female and African)
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