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  • Writer's pictureChukwuebuka Ilozumba

THOUGHTS FROM ZAMBIA 05 - TFZ05: Natural Resources and Arts

Updated: Jul 4, 2023


The National Football Team of Zambia is known as The Chipolopolos, which means Copper Bullets. The orange stripe on their national flag represents copper, which is their major mineral export and source of revenue.

Zambian Mineral Stones and Metals
Copper & Stone Bangles

Zambian Stones
Gemstone Tree with Copper Wire Binding

On the ground, one would quickly observe they are a gemstone haven as stones such as emerald, amethyst, aquamarine, citrine, garnets and every other mixture of quartz stones in between are proudly on display. These are all displayed and sold in varying sizes of rough-cut and fine-cut stones. Much more impressive is the fact that they, the people, are using what they have. For example, copper rings and bangles of brown and silver colours are produced and used locally. Art really does have a voice in Zambia.

Giraffe Wooden Carvings, Livingstone, Zambia
Giraffe Wooden Carvings

Fridge Magnets Livingstone Zambia
Locally Fabricated Fridge Magnets

One place to experience these expressions of art was at The SUNDAY MARKET. The Sunday

Artworks, Livingstone Arts Market, Zambia
Artworks, Livingstone

Market is a gathering of art makers and sellers, coming together in a central location on a Sunday, to display and sell their goods. The location was at the Arcades Shopping Mall and we dived into it right on. It was a wonderful way to spend the evening as my brain, eyes and wallet kept having a go at each other.

Let’s bring this home for a moment. What is unique to us? What are we packaging? If you are going to Ghana and someone says “buy me something”, you can almost imagine kente in your mind right away. If you were coming to Nigeria and someone says “buy me something”, what is that product(s) you consider Nigerian and would be getting for that person? Where is the go-to place for such items? Are we packaging ourselves enough? What are we selling asides jollof rice arguments? Ouch, who put pepper in my eye?

Emerald Carvings & Souvenirs, Zambia
Emerald Carvings & Souvenirs


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