From 1st of February 2012 there will be a new young Kenyan team at Kuona Trust, Nairobi. Sylvia Gichia is appointed the new Director with Ato Malinda in the new role of Programme and Marketing Officer. Danda Jaroljmek will remain as a consultant.
Sylvia N. Gichia
Sylvia was born in Nairobi, Kenya where spent a good part of her life before moving to America for her higher education. In 2000, Sylvia graduated with a Master’s degree in Business Marketing from Georgia State University, GA. In 2002 she returned to college to study photography and graduated with a Degree in Photography. Since then she has been photographing for some of Kenya’s top organizations and international brands. Some of her recent clients have included The World Bank, National Geographic, Care International, Christian Blind Mission, AGRA, AECF, Microsoft Africa, Reuters, New York Times and the Smithsonian.
The Directorship is an opportunity she feels will give her a chance to build a long-term artistic vision for Kuona as well as help raise the level and quality of the local art scene. Her current role at Kuona, managing current programmes and developing ideas for new activities has given her a good understanding of her new role in the organization.
She brings along a wide range of experience in leadership and management which will be of great value to Kuona. Sylvia’s strong leadership qualities, combined with her organizational and excellent communicative skills provide a strong foundation that will be beneficial to Kuona.
Ato was born in Nairobi, Kenya in 1981 and grew up in the Netherlands, Kenya and the USA. She studied Art History and Molecular Biology at the University of Texas in Austin. She subsequently moved back to Kenya where she began her professional practice as a painter and now works in the mediums of performance, drawing, painting, installation and video, and also as a free-lance curator.
Ato has been a practising artist for the last eight years and has travelled extensively and exhibited throughout Africa, Europe and the Caribbean. She has also worked as an arts facilitator in Eastern Africa and the UK, empowering disempowered, young African women. She will begin her Masters in Fine Arts at Transart Institute in July 2012 long distance.
Working as the Programme and Marketing Officer for Kuona Trust, Ato will endeavour to elevate the standards of contemporary Kenyan art by engaging artists in conceptual dialogue through educational programmes. And together with Sylvia Gichia, the incoming Director, she will engage the Kenyan public with contemporary art by involving Kuona Trust in public art and community art projects around Kenya.