Kampala – On Friday, last week BIC, announced continental winners of its ‘Art Master Africa 2021’ competition. The project aims at exploring art talent across Africa and the Middle East by showcasing creativity in art pieces using BIC ball pens.
The competition included one continental winner, as well as the other 11 winners from respective countries in Africa.
Themed ‘Enchant Everyday life,’ Uganda’s Gayi Eric was crowned the ‘2021 BIC Art Master of Africa.’ His art piece titled, ‘Circle of life,’ was created using four pens (till ink finished) in over 210 hours. Besides him, Ashaba Gabito (a Ugandan and an art teacher, Vienna College) was listed 8th in Africa.
In cash prize, Gayi Eric received USD 2000 whilst Ashaba Gabito, USD 250 as a token of appreciation courtesy of BIC and African Queen.
According to Gayi Eric, “circle of life was all about the current situation with the pandemic disaster hence I wanted to showcase that as nature evolves, so should our human life as we have hopes that COVID-19 will come to an end.”
In his advice, he urged “other aspiring artists to work on their talents daily hence engage themselves in such opportunities for exposure.” He added that with a cash prize will facilitate him “build up a website for work and as well buy necessary devices like camera” to officially start his career.
Hosted by and at African Queen, in Namanve, the event was embraced by BIC East Africa officials and NTV’s Faridah Nakazibwe (MC). Richard Kule Mugenyi, Country Implant – BIC Uganda, requested successful artists to “amplify the next phase as the usual norm via social media in order to explore Uganda’s hidden talent in art,” as their ambassadorship role.
Additionally, he highlighted about BIC products including; Stationery (pens, markers, highlighters, glue stick etc), hygiene (savers, blades) and lighters (pocket lighters, mega gas lighters )
There were over 6000 entries for Africa and Middle East region submitted by over 3000 artists.
“Announcements for entries in this competition were made on social media platforms hence where registration for people with interest were made.” Moses Ssenkubuge, Head of Supply Chain and Logistics – African Queen, talked about the criteria for entries before adding that, “a panel of judges (former winners now in Europe) assessed everybody’s art piece to finally select the winners.”
Addressing the presser, Enock Etyang, an official from African Queen revered that, “besides business matters between BIC and African Queen, the challenge is unto artists. What story are you going to tell? You must exhibit excellence to outcompete over 1.2 billion people in Africa.” Being his first time to experience “BIC art royalty celebrating the excellence of such grand talents,” he was gratified by the achievement due to the effort of the two partnerships.
The creative art was chosen from 6,350 entries by over 3,700 artists from 52 countries across Africa and Middle East. The work was shortlisted by a panel of judges; experts from BIC, renowned artists, winners from previous competitions and experts from Europe.
Organized annually, this was the 4th edition, since inception in 2017 from South Africa.