Sculptor Mamud brings any subject to life through art

Sculptor Mamud Samamoude is an exceptional artist who manipulates any material to bring his subject to life.

Whether he is working on plastic or metal, he can turn anything he comes across into realistic figures. Born in Mozambique, the 69-year-old artist has turned his hobby into a real passion. He has been creating figurative half-sculptures of influential people in politics, sports, entertainment and humanitarians.

His collection, estimated to be more than 500, has entertainers like Somizi Mhlongo, Cassper Nyovest, Unathi Nkayi, Papa Penny, AKA, Brenda Fassie, Lucky Dube, Michael Jackson and George Michael.

Sculptures of political figures include President Cyril Ramaphosa, Samora Machel, Steve Biko, Jacob Zuma, Albertina Sisulu, Winnie Madikizela-Mandela and Oliver Tambo. For sport, he has created sculptures of Mamelodi Sundowns billionaire owner Patrice Motsepe and legendary boxer Mohammed Ali. Samamoude's biggest dream is to meet Ramaphosa and present him with a beautiful bust bronze sculpture of him.

"I have been creating these sculptors because it is something that fulfills me... I also create signs for different companies. I use my spare time to create sculptures and sometimes I work until late at night. Believe me, once it is stuck in my head, I won't fall asleep until I have created it," Samamoude says.

He adds: "The sculptures are inspired by the people that I admire, but again making their sculptures is a way of honouring them for the work they are doing. During this lockdown, I spend a lot of time creating these pieces. But my biggest wish is to present the president [Ramaphosa] with the sculptor."

When Sowetan team visited Samamoude at his home in Booysens, Johannesburg, he was carving a beautiful sculpture of Mother Teresa. The sculptures range from plastic to stainless steel which is merged with wooden plank.

The talented artist also creates sign board for advertising agencies. He uses cuts-off wood and Acrylonitrile Butadiene Styrene, turning them into stunning art pieces.

Samamoude moved to SA in 1984 and has been creating the half-body sculptures for 25 years and has donated some of his work to politicians. Samamoude uses his own hands to create the masterpieces without any help of machine and he's eager to see his work being displayed in one of the galleries.

"I'm doing this as a hobby, but my family and grandkids feel strongly that I need to exhibit the work and also start selling them," he says.

"I spend a lot of time creating this work and they are time-consuming.

"I have created Idols judges because I love their work. I have also created plastic signs for FNB and Standard Bank."

Samamoude says his passion for art work started at a young age and he taught himself how to create these sculptures.

Since he was not getting any younger, the artist wishes to open a school or centre where he can share his skills with young people.

"I want them to be able to use their skills to create jobs for themselves."

The Emperors Palace and Carnival City signage were also created by him.

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