Sylvia Gichia is the Director of Kuona Trust Art Centre, Nairobi’s leading art space, constituting 36 artists and art studios, an extensive programme of workshops, exhibitions, presentations and artist exchanges. Sylvia has a passion for the arts and spends most of her time running this successful art centre in Nairobi that is dedicated to advancing the skills and opportunities of contemporary visual artists in Kenya and the region.
Sylvia comes from a business and marketing background and also holds a degree in photography from the Washington School of Photography. She has been working in a variety of art fields for the past 9 years locally and internationally, and has amassed a wide range of skills. She has great passion for the arts in Kenya and Africa at large and in the recent years, has managed to build good networks and relationships with the local artist community raising the profile of Kuona Trust to a leading visual art center in Kenya. Sylvia frequently speaks in a variety of forums on African contemporary art and advises many regional art organisations or the same.
The Directorship is an opportunity that gives her a chance to build a long-term artistic vision for Kuona as well as help raise the level and technical skills and the quality of contemporary art produced for local art markets. Sylvia’s current role at Kuona, directing the vision of the organization, fundraising, overseeing the artistic programmes, aswell as developing new ideas for the Trust, has given her a good standing in the art scene and solidified Kuona’s place in the overall art arena in Africa. Sylvia also sits on the board of the Kenya Copyrights Board where she is an active member of the Fundraising and publicity subcommittee. She has been appointed on the Kenya Photography Awards jury for the last 2 years running, was part of the national adjudication team for the prestigious Barclays L’atelier Art Competition 2016 and has recently been appointed on the East African Wildlife Society Photography award 2016 jury. Sylvia is one of the founding members of the Kenya Art Fair that is in its 3rd year, providing increased visibility for East Africa’s art scene and emerging art markets.
Ernest Kamara Ndungu was born and raised in Nairobi and comes to Kuona Trust with a wealth of practice in finance, administration and accounts. A graduate of Finance from the Catholic University of East Africa and as a CPA-K, Earnest hopes to bring his experience from the public service to the arts world.
Sheila Akwany is the Programmes Officer at Kuona Trust, the Leading Visual Arts Centre in Nairobi dedicated to advancing the skills and opportunities of artists while creating awareness of the contemporary visual arts in the region. Since its inception, the Trust has trained over 1,500 artists and acts as one of the major centres that shapes the growth and expansion of art in the East African region.
In her position as programmes officer, Sheila works closely with artists designing and implementing an exciting array of art programmes and projects that range from technical workshops, public art projects, community based art workshops, concept based exhibitions, international and regional residencies and artist mentoring sessions. Sheila is currently working on the development of a 3 year artist incubator programme that aims to nurture the growth and development of artists, while providing them a platform that empowers artists to implement their business and artistic ideas.
Sheila comes from a Sociology and Economics background and holds a Master’s Degree in Strategic Management. In the last five years, she has been working in a variety of art projects and has had extensive experience in Project Management and amassed a wide range of skills in monitoring and evaluation. She has great passion for the arts in Kenya and Africa and in her position at Kuona has managed to build good networks and relationships with the local artist community
Lynnet Ngigi has been working with Kuona Trust for the past four years. She joined the Trust after graduating from Daystar University with a Bachelors Degree in Communication. Lynnet first begun working with the organization as an intern, under the administrator and later on as the Sales Executive, running the Kuona Trust Art Shop.
Currently Wangui works as the Business Development Officer. Lynnet has worked hand in hand with artists to submit several proposals for commission of artwork in public places. She has spear headed several projects while at the Trust such as the Art Walk, The Art Bus,The Visual Artists Directory and is at the fore front of organizing the Kenya Art Fair.
Linda comes in as the new addition to the Kuona Trust staff team. She first joined Kuona Trust as a part time volunteer in the Office and Library in which she gained vast experience in the arts industry which made her a great addition to the team.
She holds a Diploma in Information Science from the University of Nairobi with extensive experience in Communication and Information Management. She has attended and participated in various arts related workshops which include Nai Ni Who?, the Creative Entrepreneurship Course which both are GoDown Art Centre’s initiatives and a short course certificate in International
Leadership and Organizational Behavior from Italy’s SDA Bocconi School of Management.
Linda’s also a part time volunteer at Kenya Red Cross Society- Parklands Branch, in which she dedicates her free time in running the community service work assigned to the branch.
Anthony Wachira has been working with Kuona Trust for the past 7 years.
He is a professional photographer who has worked with brands such as Visual Eyes Production and FAFA (Fashion For Peace initiative)
He is currently working at Kuona Trust as the shop attendant and grounds manager .