Mlangeni, a coffee bean artist, launches an art stokvel

Ennock Mlangeni, a self-taught visual artist, has opened a stokvel to make his work publicly accessible.

The 31-year-old, who hails from the small township of Mamafubedu, Petrus Steyn, in the Free State, stated that his venture will operate a typical stokvel, allowing community members to donate a specific sum for the entire year in exchange for one of his original works of art.

In an interview with Sunday World, he stated that he intended to foster individual and collective growth while ensuring that all stakeholders were satisfied with the outcome.

I’ve had the idea for the stokvel since last year, but I needed time to figure out how to implement it so that everyone gets what they want. The stokvel makes it easier for art enthusiasts and collectors to purchase works over a longer period of time.

“It is really straightforward and uncomplicated. It is similar to purchasing an artwork in installments. We will begin monthly contributions of R2,800 from the end of January through November. Therefore, each member will pay a total of R30 800 in installments, which is a gain because they will receive an art work worth R40 000. Each sculpture will be accompanied by a certificate of authenticity, according to Mlangeni.

He claims that if any member of the stokvel defaults, none of the other members will be affected.

In 2017, the internationally renowned artist rose to prominence after publishing a pen painting of liberation activist Winnie Madikizela-Mandela. In 2018, he won the national Bic Pen Art Master competition.

“However, it all began when I was 12 and in sixth grade, when my peers noticed my God-given talent through my flawless execution of creating comic characters. I continued to work on my skill, and by the time I was a senior in high school, my efforts and dedication had paid off.

Under the tagline “You don’t know me yet,” he painted Black Coffee using coffee, and a series of coffee portraits earned him a relationship with Nestlé-Ricoffy, which introduced him to international venues such as Uitstalling Art Gallery in Belgium.

He believes the moment has come to reintroduce the displays to his native nation. He feels this will be achievable if the stokvel is successful, allowing him to bring the long-awaited exhibition to his Ellis Art Building studio in Johannesburg. ACC

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