Nabulime’s studio: wood carving as a social practice

Lilian Mary Nabulime is a Ugandan born sculptor and senior lecturer of Fine Art. She is lecturing at College of Engineering, Design, Art and Technology (CEDAT) and has published and exhibited her works in various exhibitions both national and international.

The workshop concentrates on the exploration and development wood carving skills. It is practical in terms of studying wood as a material, the properties of wood, themes, techniques, tools and equipment.

An introductory lecture and demonstrations will be given.  Attention will be devoted to the aesthetic contexts, the development of a personal visual vocabulary and the cultivation of individual creative expression.

‘Wood carving as a social practice’ refers to incorporating wood carving with other materials. The materials added should engage, have meaning (symbolic) to society. Both the woodcarving and other materials are conceptual and can deal with issues in society, such as HIV/AIDS, promoting breastfeeding, warning about the dangers of smoking, global water crisis, effects of wars over generations etc. 

The apprentice is expected to conduct research through the internet and the library to focus on a societal issue that is important to the apprentice to guide their wood carving. Other sculptural materials will be incorporated with reference to ‘wood carving as a social practice’.


The following young artists have been selected and will be participating as apprentice in Lilian Mary Nabulime's studio. When international travel allows after the peak of the covid-19 pandemic, they will meet and work on their collective art piece in August 2020 and exhibit during KAB20. At the moment they are interacting online through Zoom and Whatsapp.

Elnah Amware is a Kenyan sculpture based in Nairobi. 


Elnah Akware, born in 1996 in Busia County Kenya, is a young, up and coming sculptor, based in Nairobi. She is currently apprenticing with Kepha Mosoti, a renown wood carving sculptor based at Kuona Artists Collective. Akware also works in dry medium, which is mostly pencil drawing. She is currently a fourth year student at Kenyatta University pursuing a Bachelor's Degree in Fine Art and Design. 

Her body of work is mostly inspired by nature, culture and current trends too. Most of her carvings are hand carved and they embody humanity and its relationship with nature and how they correlate with one another. She has participated in various pop up shows, exhibitions including the Affordable Art Show 2019, at the Nairobi National Museum 2019, BSQ Affordable Art show 2019,at the Nairobi Railways Museum.

She is currently working on achieving greater heights in her sculptural career as she embarks on her professional journey.  

Nantongo Oliva Mary is a Kampala based visual artist, who explores various media and materials. 


Nantongo J.Olivia Mary, (25) is a Kampala based visual artist. She paints using acrylic, oil and pastels in her work. Her art works are based on the use of found objects like fabric, weaving mats, buttons, plywood among others. She collect different media and items to create a paintings. Subjects include African portraits and murals. Olivia has a bachelor degree in Industrial and Fine Art from Makerere University.  She also practices jewelry, fashion, body art and she sings as a hobby. She participated in various art workshops and a few exhibitions, currently she shows her work at Afriart Gallery, on 7th Street Kampala. 

“I love focusing on women as my inspiration for painting. I paint their full figure and also do portraiture. Women are life bearers, strong and independent, they are educators and caretakers. 'A woman of love. She's a gift from above, a strength to this nation and God's manifestation.’” 

Joshua Victor Semaganda is a documentary photographer / sculptor based in Kampala


Joshua Victor Semaganda (1997 -) is a documentary photographer / sculptor based in Kampala – Uganda. He learnt  these two artforms  while studying at MTSIFA (Margret Trowel School of Industrial and Finearts) at Makerere University, where his is currently in his final year.

He rediscovered his love for photography while in his second year and it is where his interests in story telling through imagery developed. 

His work focuses on the daily life of the people around him. In addition, his art is based on storytelling. He also employs the technique of storytelling through sculpture where he intends to communicate social issues through this form of art too. He is passionate about art and has a great desire to learn from his peers. 

Sifiso Mkhabela is a South African contemporary metal sculptor.


Sifiso Mkhabela is a contemporary metal sculptor. Picking up the welder and the grinder was not just an artistic choice for him, his work is inspired by his father, who is a boiler maker and that is why working with metal became second nature to him.

Drawing inspiration from his childhood memories, working with metal is hard work and watching his father work tirelessly over the years and never giving up really helped him form the solid ground that he stands on as a sculptor today. He regards metal is a medium that speaks volumes to because it is used in almost everything we used in our daily lives, metal is the back bone of our entire infrastructure.

His sculptures are distinct by his use of geometric forms and organic structures. Hybridity shines as a powerful tool of transformation and reconstruction of existing concepts to create new exciting structures. His point of view is inspired by mathematical and scientific concepts and  philosophy thought by Plato where he said “The physical world is a poor decaying copy of a perfect, rational and changeless original world. ” Platonism is a contemporary view that there are abstract objects that do not exist in time or space, my work is an attempt to represent these abstract objects taking from my childhood experience.