Car guard-turned-artist Erick David Karangwa has been making his mark on the Cape Town art scene ever since his talent was discovered a few years ago.
Karangwa burst onto the scene in 2016, while he was working as a car guard at Constantia Village Shopping Centre.
Centre management noticed his talent and offered him an exhibition where he sold his first works and connected to his inspiration and mentor Andrew Cooper.
Karangwa was born in Rwanda and fled from his home in 1994 when war broke out. He arrived in South Africa in 2004.
He had a hidden gift for painting and was inspired to pick up a brush by Cooper, whose work was on display at a gallery in the shopping centre.
He has since developed strong connections with galleries and other art communities which have taken notice.
Karangwa says he still has a long way to go in his career and says he prefers opportunities over hand-outs.
He says he sustains himself and makes a full-time living as an artist.
Karangwa was invited to paint for the Wavescape Surf and Ocean Festival's annual Art Board Project.
The event sees top artists invited to turn a surfboard into a work of art. The boards are then auctioned off and the proceeds go to ocean-related charities.
Karangwa is one of 11 artists, including Lionel Smit and Brett Murray, who will partake in the auction project.
The auction will take place on Wednesday 28 November at Jack Black Brewery in Diep River from 7pm.
My life has changed a lot since I left the car park.— Erick David Karangwa, self-taught artist
It was a very difficult journey because I started with nothing.— Erick David Karangwa, self-taught artist
I'm still pushing and I'll never give up.— Erick David Karangwa, self-taught artist
I do a lot of landscapes and portraits as well.— Erick David Karangwa, self-taught artist
I'm looking forward to my art being on auction.— Erick David Karangwa, self-taught artist
Karangwa spoke about his latest artistic achievements and his upcoming projects.
Listen to his inspiring story on New Beginnings on The Pippa Hudson Show:
Image: Erick's Facebook page.