The Influence of Photography and Digital Art on Contemporary Art and Design in East Africa

  • Bradley D. Wamutoro University of Nairobi
  • Collins S. Makunda University of Nairobi
Keywords: Digital Art, Visual Artist, Afrofuturist artist


A photographer and an Afrofuturist digital artist Osborne Macharia comes up with his best ideas in a very creative way. He starts with a visual composition and then looks for an anecdote that might complement it. He is a self-taught Kenyan photographer who makes intriguing surrealist photo series that tell the most remarkable stories. On the other hand, Thandiwe Muriu is a self-taught photographer born and raised in Nairobi, Kenya. Pursuing photography from an early age, she is passionate about helping brands communicate through photography so they can get their message across in ways that will not only keep their audiences engaged but also help them get the desired response. Problem: Macharia and Thandiwe are two of the finest visual artists in the industry whose work focuses on themes of Afrofuturism culture, identity and functional narratives. This paper traverses how Macharia and Thandiwe have used their ultimate creativity in digital art to conquer the digital visual art world. They have been quite triumphant in the visual arts industry-leading us to cross-examine some of his iconic works of art. Objective: The main objective of this study is to analyze their sense of style, timing, inspiration, achievements, creativity and their endeavor as photographers and digital visual artists which makes him stand out in the visual arts industry. Design: In this study we used qualitative methods to analyze the incredible works of the digital artists. The source of data include; journals, magazines blogs and websites. Setting: The study is being conducted in Nairobi, Kenya. Subject: The subject of this study are the photographers and digital visual artists, Osborne Macharia. Results: Studying Photography and digital art is one of the most interesting and inspiring exercises I have had. The evidence is outstanding and has vividly shown how East Africa is joining the enlightened world through advanced technology in visual arts. Conclusion: The great works of Osborne Macharia and Thandiwe Muriu have proven to be emblematic and have placed Kenya and East Africa at large to an elevated status when it comes to creativity.