Untitled, Tanzania

Robino Ntila

Robino Ntila is an artist based in Tanzania. He works with artists all over Africa, conducting printmaking workshops, mostly with the support of the Ford Foundation. He has taught many artists how to print, helping them market their work in the process.

Robino worked closely with the famous Makonde artist George Lilanga, teaching him the art of printing. Lilanga, one of the few early carvers able to transition from three-dimensional to two-dimensional work, made the transition from carver to visual artist in a movement called Tinga Tinga. His distinct style characterized the start of the movement in Tanzania, one which Ntila continues today, alongside Lilanga’s son.

I met Robino Ntila in Nairobi in 1994. I have more than one hundred Ntila prints, as the artist used to send them to me once a year. Today, Ntila has taken to painting, and thus no longer sends me etchings.