Chuma Somdaka is a young street artist who has spent the last three years of her life sleeping on a park bench in the Company Garden in Cape Town. Despite being homeless, alone and enduring the loss of her leg from an amputation above the knee, Chuma has not allowed herself to be disabled by circumstance. It is simply her foundation from which to build a better life. One as bright and as promising as her mesmerising works of art.
Through her gift for finding beauty in the forgotten, Chuma’s portraits explore the lives of everyday people living on the streets, capturing their energy, emotions, thoughts and telling their stories. In so doing, she brings an element of humanity to the face of homelessness.
With the generosity of others, she is now preparing to earn a qualification from the prestigious Ruth Prowse School of Art in Woodstock. Like her name which means ‘dirty blossom’ in isiXhosa, she is proof that something beautiful can grow in the darkest of places if given a ray of light.
The Chuma Somdaka Foundation aspires to provide Chuma and others like her with assistance as they work towards achieving their dreams. Our mission is to give homeless artists an encouraging space to exhibit and sell their pieces, while connecting them with resources and skills to improve themselves, polish their craft and journey away from a life on the streets.