17 July 2018

GeoCaching #2 - A 'multi-cache' and fascinating sculptures at Nairobi National Museum, plus looking up some history

'Mother and Child' - by Francis Nnaggenda - is a landmark piece at the entrance to the Nairobi National Museum

Francis Xavier Nnaggenda, is recognized as one of the most important artists of his generation in East Africa. His expressionistic work, especially sculptures, have drawn considerable acclaim. Nnaggenda (b. 1936) was raised in rural Buganda, in central Uganda, where he became intimately connected with traditional life. He grieved over the way modernization was undermining the stability of African communities.

From an early age Nnaggenda knew he wanted to become an artist. He felt it was the best and most practical way of raising his voice against a skewed development process that he was witnessing. During the era of Idi Amin, Nnaggenda went into exile and studied art in Germany and France. He attended Freibourg University (Switzerland) and Bavarian Academy of Fine Arts (Germany).

When Nnaggenda moved to Kenya in 1968 to teach art at the University of Nairobi, he met Joseph Murumbi (see picture). Murumbi was Africa’s greatest cultural collector and an ardent supporter of the pioneer artists of East Africa - - those artists who started their careers against all odds, shortly after independence.

Murumbi became an admirer of Nnaggenda's artwork and was one of his first collectors, eventually buying five of his monumental sculptures. Nnaggenda's sculpture ‘Mother and Child’ was commissioned by Murumbi.



Struggling to survive in Africa, Nnaggenda moved to Texas where he lived for 25 years before returning to be Chairman of Fine Arts at Uganda’s Makerere University. Francis Nnaggenda is recognised as one of the most important artists of his generation in East Africa. His expressionistic work, especially sculptures, have drawn considerable acclaim. [Sadly, I was unable to find a photo of Nnaggenda.]


Perhaps (?) this is another one of Nnaggenda's pieces? It's sad nothing is marked outside in the garden areas.

Carved from wood, perhaps directly from a tree

 Pendo la Mama (Mama's Love), appears to be made of scrap iron

It was a bit of a challenge, but I eventually succeeded in finding the multi-cache!

Multi-caches require more time and can be more difficult to locate than are traditional caches, as there are many steps along the way. For this one - named 'Sculptures and Stuff' - I had to first find various numbers located on signs throughout the museum garden. These numbers are then used to complete the GPS coordinates that were only partially given on the app. Once I had the coordinates, then came the task of finding the actual physical cache, all-the-while trying to avoid being seen by other people.

As always, I enjoyed the flowers, 'stopping to smell the roses' so-to-speak.

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