12 artists, 12 locations, 12 containers

In October 2012 the first Kampala Contemporary Art Festival was happening in the streets of Kampala. Under the title „12 BOXES MOVING“ 12 shipping containers were distributed in the city, transformed by 12 Ugandan and international artists to serve as individual exhibition spaces in public places and as a platform to showcase Uganda’s visual art. The bi-annual event was a unique collaboration between eight art organisations in Kampala: 32° East|Ugandan Arts Trust, Afriart Gallery, AKA Gallery, Goethe-Zentrum Kampala, Alliance Française Kampala, Makerere Art Gallery/IHCR, Nommo Gallery and Uganda Museum.

A great variety of sculptures, photography, videos, installations, fashion, collages, paintings and performances have been presented during the festival. The artists even left their four walls of the container behind and invited the public to interact with the artworks.
The artists have been selected through an open call and an artist workshop. The participating artists were: Bwambala Ivan Allan, Emma Wolukau-Wanambwa, Eria Nsubuga ‘Sane’, Eric Mukalazi, Lilian Mary Nabulime, Ronex, Ruganzu Bruno, Sanaa Gateja, Stella Atal, Sue Crozier Thorburn, Waswad and Xenson.

The artists dealed with topics like human rights, urban youth-culture in Kampala and remembered 50 years of Independence in Uganda. Others reflected critically about health and traffic problems in Kampala and environmental pollution, unequal power relations within the cloth production on the global economy market or documented traditional Ugandan cultural sites. The artists often used available, recycled and natural materials, cloths and found objects and promoted ecological awareness.

Pictures of the 12 containers!

KLA ART 012 aimed to promote the contemporary art scene in Uganda, explore new and innovative ways of creating art and presenting outcomes to the public. In doing so, art left its place within art venues and museums and was made accessible to the public space. This happend truly, since a wider public was addressed, also people who are not touched by art in their daily life.

The 12 containers could have been visited for free from the 7th to the 14th of October at the different sites in Kampala’s public space, like the Railway Station, Kisementi Parking lot and close to the participating venues. Apart from the exhibitions there was an additional artistic program during the week, like film screenings, art talks and interactive projects at the different container.

The Festival ended on the 14th October with a big closing party at the Goethe-Zentrum Kampala during which the International Jury was announcing the Award Winners. The International Jury was formed by Nadine Siegert from the Iwalewa-Haus in Bayreuth (Gemany), Raphael Chikukwa from the National Gallery in Zimbabwe, Sylvia N. Gichia from Kuona Trust in Kenya, Danda Jaroljmek from the Circle Art Agency in Kenya and the artsist and professor George Kyeyune from Uganda.
The artist Ronex Ahimbisibwe won a 2 month residency at the Iwalewa-Haus in Bayreuth, Bwambale Ivan Allan won a 2 month residency at Kuona Trust in Nairobi and Xenson won the public art award from 32° East in Kampala.

KLA ART 012 is a good example of how art interventions can influence public space and the societies.

Please visit for more information the official KLA’ART 012-Homepage.