Mika Obanda: The 22 Year Old Making High-Cost Art From Eggshells

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Photos: Mika Obanda

By Prudence Minayo

Mika Obanda is a 22-year-old Nairobi based artist turning eggshells to mosaic art. When he was looking for something to make his paintings with, he came across eggshells. Since he was bothered by how they were being strewn around, he decided to incorporate them into art.

Sourcing eggshells

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The artist works at Mukuru art collective, which was founded in 2010 to help youths fight against social anxiety, depression, and crime and drug abuse.

He gets the shells from five star hotels, dump sites, and vendors. After getting them, he cleans and paints them using different colors. To form specific patterns and straight lines, he uses a scalpel to cut the eggshells. He uses a precise pattern, primarily triangles, then he organizes them with a toothpick before positioning them on his art pieces.

When people catch a glimpse of them for the first time, they think it is paper or plastic. They are
surprised when they realize that it is eggshells and this makes them to have a closer look. This allows people to look at art differently.

Inspiration and sales

Photos: Mika Obanda

The inspiration for his art is gotten from his mother and the streets around him.

I am inspired by my streets and mostly my mother, and I try to also capture the women power because I have been raised by a single mother, so I try to capture different moments where she used to be so loving, so caring, and also how she used to work hard, so as to pay for my fees and my sibling’s fees“, he told Africa News.

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Apart from exhibitions, the talented artist sells and markets his artwork through social media pages and also has a YouTube channel. His pieces are sold both within and outside the country for at least Sh5,000.

In 2022, he was among the artists whose art was exhibited at the Sands of Nomad in Diani during the celebration of the Global Recycling Day on 18th March.

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