Kubuda mudope translates to Out of the mud.
The series began in 2020 with Who Is Next, the first paddle work with which Musekiwa attempted to articulate the sentiment of fear and instability felt in his community and shared globally. From it was born the 2021 series Kubuda mudope, which translates to out of the mud.
Adorned with cut number plates, a sublet reference to identity cards, Musekiwa presents portraits of people, who, despite the odds weighed against them, continue to strive. One tempting reading of these works is that Musekiwa is rising monuments to the existential resilience demonstrated by the most vulnerable individuals and nations as the pandemic continues to bulldoze their already threadbare stability. But, there is pride and a sense of success within these bodies; a hope that transcends the virus, the economic hardship, and governmental mismanagement that has exacerbated food insecurity and access to aid.
“When you are stuck in something, there is an opportunity that happens in getting out of it. It can be through belief, or through hard work, or just the simple passage of time. From 2020 when I first started working with them, I’ve been digging myself out of the mud. It’s a personal journey, but it’s parallel to a global movement.
This is a time when we are all coming out of the mud. Me personally, but also so many people around the world. The pandemic turned our lives around, but step by step we are emerging, we are succeeding.
The vaccine is a solution to the pandemic, a way out of the mud. It’s an idiom. There are many interpretations for these works. This sense of a process before we are clean of something is a state we encounter often in life.”
- Terrence Musekiwa