Chrisford Chayera hails from Lilongwe District in Malawi where he h has spent much of his life as a professional “mouth artist”. He uses his mouth to paint.
After falling ill when I was 11 years old with poliomyelitis, his hands and legs became paralysed. At that point, nobody ever expected that he one day have the capacity to employ himself.
Without functioning hands and legs, one would have thought he would not survive without meaningful employment. But those were just mere assumptions.
As he grew up, he was still able to attend primary and secondary education, and succeed. In August 1994, soon after he completed secondary education, he made his first attempt at mouth painting.
With diligence, he succeeded and constantly improved his technique each passing day. The technique and material that he uses includes acrylic and oil on canvas.
“I am an extraordinaire artist because I have got an in-born talent of using the mouth to paint not hands as most painters do,” he boasts.
As former president of the Visual Artists Association of Malawi (VAAM), he believes that art is a complete way of his life.
“I rely on it and my work takes a critical view on social, political and cultural issues often referring to traditional African history and culture,” he says.
As an accomplished fine artist, some of the exhibition and projects that he has been involved include the following:
- In 2015 received an honorary certificate for the best artist in Malawi by Jane Adams high school, USA.
- In 2014, attended art fair at Bishop Mackenzie High School organized by International Women’s Association of Malawi (IWAM) in Lilongwe, Malawi.
- In 2013, attended art exhibition organized by Visual Artists Association of Malawi (VAAM) at four seasons garden in Lilongwe, Malawi.
- In 2012, received an award of best artist of the year organized by BWALO LA ALUSO in Malawi.
- In 2011, attended training in art and development at Chancellor College in Zomba
- In 2010, attended training in business management and marketing on website.
- In 2009, attended art exhibition at the African Bible College organized by Wildlife and Environmental Society of Malawi (WESM).
- In 2008, attended art exhibition at Bishop Mackenzie High School organized by WESM
- In 2007, his works were exhibited in OHIO, U.S.A
- In 2006, attended art exhibition at Old Mutual Building organized by BEST ART PANORAMA, in Malawi
- In 2005, conducted solo exhibition at Lilongwe vocational training centre for the Malawi Council for the Handicapped (MACOHA)
- He has participated in over 15 exhibitions in several places within Malawi and sold over 100 pieces.