Ilibagiza Bayijahe Nyirankuriza

Ilibagiza is an emerging self-taught artist who is based in Kigali, Rwanda. She has loved drawing ever since she could hold a pencil. Her interest in art was cultivated during her teenage years when she made drawings for her classmates at school and the interest further developed after she earned her college degree. Ilibagiza’s artistic career began in 2017 while making wedding gifts for her friends by practicing realism. She now works primarily in realism and paper collaging. Images of women’s faces and bodies are brought to life with bits of papers, magazine cutouts, print-outs that she sticks together on canvas to make an art piece as a whole. She makes collages exploring feminism. A feminist womanhood, particularly black womanhood has become the focus and center of her art work. Her art is inspired and motivated by issues that many women face and experience, addressing such themes as culture and social norms, beauty standards and menstruation. Ilibagiza invites women to love themselves, to embrace and celebrate their beauty and the magic of their bodies, to accept and be comfortable and confident in their beautiful bodies.