Nelson Makamo

Tracy Robbins (left) Nelson Makamo (centre) and Kelly Rowland (right) Image via Instagram @kellyrowland

SA artist Nelson Makamo stuns Kelly Rowland with solo exhibition ‘Blue’ [photos]

‘Thank you for your gift’: American singer Kelly Rowland was blown away after viewing South African artist Nelson Makamo’s solo exhibition in Los Angeles.

Nelson Makamo

Tracy Robbins (left) Nelson Makamo (centre) and Kelly Rowland (right) Image via Instagram @kellyrowland

South African artist Nelson Makamo stunned American musician Kelly Rowland with his first solo exhibition, titled Blue, in Los Angeles, California Blue. Rowland gushed over Makomo’s exhibition praising all his pieces for being unique, rooted and spiritual. 

ALSO READ: Watch: Trevor Noah talks to fellow South African, Nelson Makamo


Johannesburg-based Nelson Makamo was born in Modimolle, Limpopo. According to his website, the 39-year-old artist is best known for his charcoal and oil paintings that redress decades of images portraying poverty-stricken African children. 

Makamo has exhibited work in several countries including France, Finland, Italy, Scotland and England. He has also worked with rapper Kwesta on their album covers. 

Earlier this year, Makamo customised his very own luxury car, a Porsche 911. According to Car Mag, the celebrated artist hand-painted several of the car’s components including the rear bumper and side mirror covers.

“I always knew I was going to own a Porsche, I just never knew that my relationship with the brand would start this way – and it’s only the beginning.”


For his solo exhibition Blue, Makamo noted that he didn’t realise how much hard work and commitment would go into it. He explained that the underlying theme of his exhibition is hope.

“With the latest piece of work Blue, we don’t only want to share our story, but invite people to the exhibition to be a part of the conversation,” Makamo told IOL

“As much as I live on the African continent, I don’t want my work to only have a frame of where I live in South Africa. I want my work to resonate with people from all walks of life, from different races, backgrounds, the global community at large.”

“It’s about connecting artists on a global platform through this exhibition.”

The exhibition opened on 7 October and will run until 20 November. 

ALSO READ: Global phenomenon: Nelson Makamo’s new exhibition is a must-see


Kelly Rowland visited Nelson Makamo’s exhibition in Los Angeles and took to Twitter to share that she was blown away by the show. She posted a picture with Makamo and wardrobe stylist Tracy Robbins at the exhibition.

“Darest Nelson Makamo, we were truly blown away by your show today! There are no words to describe what we say. Every single piece is so incredibly unique, rooted and spiritual! Thank you for your gift! Love you always!”