“Singi Chihota is an exceptionally versatile stone sculptor who explores the medium in a myriad of fascinating ways. There is an emotional expressiveness in his work which draws the viewer in. He is both a gifted artist and teacher.”
ZimArt Curator, Fran Fearnley
Born in 1975 in Zimbabwe’s Centenary District, Singi Chihota started carving at the age of 12. His father Luke Chihota, a basket weaver and stone sculptor, was his mentor. Singi credits his father with teaching him that sculpting is a contemplative process. In 1989 Singi was invited to join the Tengenenge Art Colony. Six years later he moved to the Rukodzi studio, where his cousin, internationally acclaimed artist Edronce Rukonzi, helped him take his work to a different level. In 1996 he was appointed supervisor at the studio, mentoring young artists joining the collective.
Singi finds inspiration in daily life, the spirit world and nature. The human family is a recurring theme in his work. He carves in a range of stones, but prefers the colorful serpentine which comes from his rural home near Guruve. Singi moves effortlessly between abstract curved forms to and more representational works. He sometimes chooses to introduce elaborate chisel work into his sculptures and at times experiments with leaving some of the stone untouched and natural.
Singi’s work was exhibited at the Mobil Anglo-American Zimbabwe Heritage Exhibition in 1994 and 1998. In 1998 he was awarded a highly recommended certificate by the National Art Gallery of Zimbabwe. In 2000 one of his sculptures was selected for the permanent collection at the Harare Airport. Singi has sold work to collectors and galleries in Germany, Holland, the US, the UK, Canada and South Africa. He has participated in group exhibitions hosted by the Fen Bank of Atlanta (1995) and The Museum of Fine Arts in San Diego, California (1997, 1998).
In 2009, Singi was the featured artist-in-residence at the Shona D’Afrique V, inn Beaconsfield, Montreal and Rice Lake X, the tenth annual exhibition hosted by ZimArt at the Rice Lake Gallery. He also led three successful sculpting workshops at the gallery.