MULEKE ALEX IS THE YOUNG TALENT WHO CREATED TWENTY PAINTINGS, EACH INTERPRETING A POEM SELECTED FOR ONGOING POETRY ANTHOLOGY PROJECT.
Muleke Alex has discovered his heart and soul in art and design. The environment in which he lives, and the onslaught of Coronavirus pandemic have greatly influenced his inspiration, motivation, mission, and his main subject matters in art.
Uganda’s first presidential directive calling for a countrywide lockdown to slow down and control spread of coronavirus triggered artistic desire in Alex to record the milestone unfolding in his generation. “This is when I developed an idea of making a masterpiece for the COVID moment,” states Alex. “Then in March 2020, I produced a painting, ‘Mask’ or ‘Muleke Alex COVID Painting.’ It attracted attention of 75 viewers in one week. It was such an inspiration for me. Many people got to know me by that painting. It was a starting point in my artistic life.”
It was at the height of Uganda’s lockdown and the pandemic that Alex was engaged to do artistic illustration of 20 selected poems for the poetry anthology on recommendation of his teacher and editor of the anthology, Ms. Kaigo Betty. He embraced the proposal whole heartedly. So, with joining university still on hold, Alex already had his hands full with what he is passionate about and looked forward to pursuing in Kyambogo University, Kampala.
His task with the 20 poems involved studying each of them for their meaning which he then would transform into visual work in paint. “It’s a wonderful experience joining art with poetry. The artistic ideas that poets possess is really a gift from above,” stated Alex, conscious of the symbiotic relationship between the two genres.
Art, for Alex is a journey of meditation and discovery of self out of which paintings emerge and take shape: “Something so breathtaking about art is that it helps me to discover myself more and more. Art pushes me into silence and gets me into conversation between me and my inner self. I reflect on my life and the kind of experiences I pass through to get a theme for my next painting. The painting itself acts as a tool that makes me turn away from whatever had blinded me.”
Alex has tasked himself with three things that he will always fight to achieve. In his own words:
- To help youth in the community where I come from, especially those who turned away from their life journey and accepted to be driven by all sorts of substance abuse and addictions. I can only achieve this through making an art project that will inspire them to also think like artists. When they discover the brilliant light that is in art, they will turn away from their past life.
- I also want to explore the impact of art to the mind of a child with special needs. This is because in the community where I come from, these children are neglected and poorly educated. People think such children are wasted and useless in society.
- My last desire is to make community exhibitions for my artwork, that of children with special needs and of my fellow youths that I desire to change from substance abuse and addiction.
Alex spends his time exploring places to make research and references for his paintings as a matter of a hobby. “I love making portraits especially female emotional faces. I also love listening to soft music and driving myself into total silence,” stated Alex.
Alex is already showing signs of a fiercely serious artist with a huge mission. At prime age of 21 years, he still has a full life of energy and ambition to fulfill his dreams. He is pursuing Bachelor of Vocational Studies in Art and Design with Education at Kyambogo University, Kampala. He resides in Kampala city’s suburb of Kireka, which has been source of inspiration for many of his paintings.
If you wish to experience more of Alex’s sense of beauty and art, follow him on the following channels:
- youtube@Muleke Alex