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Published: 13 June 2020

By Andy Ross

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Article of the Week - number eighteen

Zimbabwe's second largest city after the capital, Harare, Bulawayo was founded in about 1840 as the settlement of the Ndebele King, Mzilikazi,  who was succeeded by his son Lobengula. Known as the industrial heart of the country, Bulawayo was once home to the textile industry although that has now largely disappeared. 

Quite a few years ago, on a visit to Bulawayo, I bought this piece at the local Art Gallery. Created by Cornelia Nemungando who lives in the city, the piece is made of cotton with applique and  embroidery, and it tells the story of a Woman's Day in the rural areas of the country. Each panel shows an activity from sun-up to sundown in lovely detail. On the back of the work is a small pocket holding a folded piece of lined paper, of the sort used in schools in Zimbabwe. The paper has, on it in Cornelia's writing, each panel's story and it is reproduced here for you to see. 

Just after this arrived in the studio we got together with other groups and made a Shetland version: A Crofting Life. This will be an Article of the Week soon.