The artist known as Kembo was born in Kinshasa in 1983. He studied as an Artist Designer and an architect at the IBTP Kinshasa.

Real name Gabriel K. Mencoln, Kembo soon became famous due to his inventiveness in architecture and soon crossed into art inspired by traditional African tools, which he finds among craftsmen and antique markets. This earns him several recognitions and merits, including the Nekongo prize in 2013.

A series of projects for luxury hotels, restaurants, exhibitions and individuals, then paintings with innovative techniques followed by furniture have been enough to build an international reputation.

His furniture are true sculptures, works of art in their own right. Kembo’s work King Kongo’s chair is on permanent display at the National Museums of Kinshasa. He’s a free and unrestricted creator who navigates between visual arts, design, painting and architecture.

His first major exhibition outside the DRC was held from March 1 to 31 at the Ama Ata Aidoo Centre for Creative Writing at AUCC, Adabraka ACCRA. These are works that are grand in scale and weight. They are made of alloys knocked together sometimes, smelted other times and worked on to produce the brilliant masterpieces that resulted.

He describes his piece Presidential Palace as “a true object of worship. It is in fact a fusion of masks – SHOKWE and LUBA – of the man and the woman” with a disturbing realism but deeply poetic and esthetic.


Long-time victimized and forced into exile by President Kabila’s regime because of his vocal opposition, Kembo decided to dedicate this exhibition to his parents, both painters.



Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here