recognised internationally, the sculptor Alberto Chissano
only started carving when he was 29. Before that, his life
followed the normal course of any Mozambican peasant child.
Herding animals as a child, virtually no formal education
and then leaving for the city while still very young. There,
work as a domestic servant or a cook, followed by a try
at the adventure of South African mines.
Chissano' s story only took a more individual turn when
he returned from South Africa. After completing the military
service in the portuguese armed forces, Chissano got a job
as a cleaner in an artistic association, the "Núcleo
de Arte". Stimulated by what he saw there, and with
the support of some of the more experienced artists, he
set to work and held his first one-man exhibition in 1964.
From then on, he lever looked back.
normally worked in wood, although sometimes also with stone
and iron. In the words of Alessandro Zuccari, Chissano 's
work is "not the product of a totally empirical and
artesanal treatment, but stems from a capacity for creative
synthesis which makes a conscious use of artist 's techniques
and inventiveness". He considers him "an eloquent
example of the dialectic exchange between African and European
cultures", which gives his works their power and expressivity.
strength, this ability to give life to inert logs, is the
reason for the many prizes he has received, from the Lourenço
Marques (now Maputo) Town Council's First Prize in sculpture
in 1966, to the first and second prizes in Jugoslavia in
died in 1994 in Mozambique.
"Expo 92: 9 artistas de Moçambique"