Decoration of the Youth, charcoal, pastel, ink and oil on Belgian linen canvas, 200×250 cm, 2019, ©Andile Buka


Nelson Makamo is a Johannesburg based artist. Born in 1982, in a town called Modimolle, in South Africas Limpopo province. Gifted with an astounding artistic aptitude in drawing and painting. He honed his craft at Artist Proof Studios in Johannesburg where he studied print making.

Makamo has exhibited in group and solo exhibitions in South Africa, Europe, England and the US. He has shown in group shows alongside other South African artists including David Koloane, Colbert Mashile, Deborah Bell and William Kentridge.

Nelsons work is strongly influenced by the candid innocents of children. He is particularly drawn to children in rural South Africa, he believes that they embody the peace and harmony we all strive for in life, the search for eternal joy lies in the child within us all, we are just so consumed with worldly things that we forget the simplicity of life through a childs perspective.

Makamos work forms part of a few collections such as those of fashion icon Giorgio Armani, musician Annie Lennox, Hanzehof Zutphense Kunst Collectis, DJ Black Coffee, Swizz Beatz, Oprah Winfrey, Ava Duvernay just to name a few.

His most recent achievement is one of his artwork gracing the special edition TIME magazine optmist issue cover, guest edited by acclaimend film director Ava Duvernay.



2018: FNB Joburg art fair, Booth Ll Editions, Johannesburg, South Africa
The Re-awakening, CIRCA Gallery, Cape Town, South Africa

2017: 1:54, Booth GAFRA Gallery, London, UK
No Commission, Dean Collection, Berlin, Germany
We are the souls of Azania, GAFRA Gallery, London, UK
Salon Zurcher Africa Art Fair, Zurcher Gallery, New York, USA
DDESSIN17, Drawing Fair, Atelier Richelieu, Paris, France

2016: Dipôlelo, Galerie Fatiha Selam, curated by Anna Reverdy, Paris, France

2014: Everard Read, Cape Town, South Africa
Everard Read, Johannesburg, South Africa

2013: Salon 91, Cape Town, South Africa

2011: Museum of Africa, Johannesburg, South Africa

2009: Sharing Realities II, African Studies Center, Leiden, The Netherlands
Walking with Me, UTS Gallery, Edinburg, Scotland
A Place I Call Home, Gallery on the Square, Johannesburg, South Africa

2008: Moving into Light, KZNSA Gallery, Durban, South Africa
Sharing Realities, Gallery Izarte, Zutphen, The Netherlands

2005: Walk with me, Obert Contemporary Art Gallery, Johannesburg, South Africa


2018: 1:54, Booth GAFRA Gallery, London, UK
2017: Fuir, Foundation Blachère, Apt, France
2016: Post It, Constitution Hill, Johannesburg, South Africa
2015: 1:54, Booth CIRCA Gallery, London, UK
2014: FNB Joburg art fair, Booth Everard Read Gallery, Johannesburg, South Africa
Winter, Everard Read Gallery, Cape Town, South Africa
2012: Figuring differences curated by Andrew Lamprecht, salon 91, Cape Town, South Africa The 21th birthday of Artist Proof Studio, Johannesburg Art Gallery, Afrique du sud
2010: Young Contemporaries, Galleria Nikki Diana Marquardt, Paris, France
2009: City Link, Gallery 23, Amsterdam, The Netherlands
Gallery on the Square, Sandton, Johannesburg, South Africa
2007: Cultural and Business Art Exhibition, Somma Lombardo, Italy
Making Identity, The Thompson Gallery, Johannesburg, South Africa
2006: Ten Years of Printmaking, David Krut Print Studios, Johannesburg, South Africa


2017: Foundation Blachère, Apt, France
2016: SAFFCA Foundation, Saint-Émilion, France