KNEW KIDS is a concept that embraces acknowledgement of the past and in the process inspires the future, which is based on the experiences and ideologies of the artist.

 Vusi Mbulali, a portrait artist who draws his inspiration from being a self-taught experimental artist, and he gained more experience by being around his counterparts like Polygraph Modupi, Bamboo Sibiya, Madi Phala and Mafa Ngwenya. His highly technical abstract art has evolved through his various projects namely “siyavana IV”, a trending south African move which reflects to the artist memories about his mother who taught him to carry a bucket on the head and left there without holding it, balanced by the neck; “imthatchild”, based on his childhood sentimental memories; “Qhiniqhiya, a reflection of traditional performed most by mothers like Winnie Mandela and own mother. To him as an artist this tradition had some profound impact, and a “Warriors” series, a spirit of perseverance and victory which he gets from athletes, his own family and politicians. Mbulali simply sees himself as also Knew kid from the journey he found himself in which requires fresh ideas of creativity and ancient knowledge. That is why he deliberate uses the letter K in “knew kids”, which represents the vast knowledge he has acquired through learning on other cultural worlds like storytelling, music and filming which got him inspired.

The artist has a professional career that spans over 20 years and his artistic journey has been *publicly recognized started when he was only 12 when his principal gave him homework to draw a human body and label it. His skill and precision were dumbfounding and this discovery launched Vusi Mbulali’s artistic journey and his work has evolved from drawing school charts, posters and book illustrations to encompass painting of South African heroes such as the late Nelson Mandela, Oliver Tambo and Steve Biko among many other renowned public stalwarts and private commissions.

Mbulali took an opportunity to introduce his retrospective potraits and new techniques in his abstract works at his first solo exhibition at the Springs Art Gallery in 2009 which was a resounding success for the artist and after that he has grown in strength and stride, as he was part of the 30 chosen artists exhibiting at the 30/30 Contemporary Group Art Exhibition in 2014. His artistic work received great reviews from artists like the late David Nthubu Koloane, an acclaimed artist, educator, writer, curator and facilitator who was recognised and honoured internationally for his contribution to the visual arts in South Africa. Additionally, since the late 1970s, Koloane has been a pioneer in the development of the black art community in South Africa and co-founded Johannesburg’s first black art gallery as well as being the head of Fine Arts at the Federative Union of Black Artists (FUBA).

 In 2017, Vusi Mbulali exhibited at the OR Tambo Centenary Celebration Exhibitions, the OR Tambo Coin Launch, OR Tambo Centenary Lecture (with President Thabo Mbeki as the keynote speaker) and the OR Tambo Corporate Golf Challenge. In 2018 his work was exhibited at the Talking to Deaf Ears Exhibition at Absa Art Gallery, and at The Aftermath exhibition hosted at First Rand’s pop-up exhibition space. Of note, is the artist drive to give back and he has done so through his continued mentoring of art students at Matshidiso LSEN School from tsakane to Johannesburg exhibitions   and taught art to children at Geluksdal Library. He has further appreciated an opportunity to teach art in his home community with The Star in Vire Art Class Project.

His Printmaking journey was accompanied by his colleagues and friend Kamagelo Masemola who is also an artist, community art developer And art curator Thabo Sekoaila they both introduced him to Artist Proof Studio on different occasions, where he did printmaking for two years.

Vusi Mbulali’s contribution to the art community can be see through his published poetry and prose book written by Lindiwe Mabuza and Steve Biko memorial lectures 2000-2008.he also worked on a Face of a nation a Nelson Mandela Coffey table book”

He spent 7years working at August house studios in Johannesburg whereby they open for public 2 to 3 times a year. He is now currently working privately on his new theme “Blaq power” project whereby he embraces African people for their victories over human rights and culture.