Watch Video As 18-Year-Old Boy From Sierra Leone Storms The Art World

9 mins read
Abu G
18-Year-Old Boy From Sierra Leone Has Taken The Art World By Storm
Abu G
18-Year-Old Boy From Sierra Leone Has Taken The Art World By Storm

18-Year-Old Boy From Sierra Leone Has Taken The Art World By Storm


In video uploaded by Issadin k, a Sierra Leonean Youtuber, 18-Year-Old Boy From Sierra Leone Has Taken The Art World By Storm with his beautiful artwork

Alusine Gibril Kamara, a 17-year-old Sierra Leonean art prodigy is one of those using creativity in promoting mental health by using his artwork. Born in Freetown, he started doing his artwork at the age of 5. Like many young people in Sierra Leone who find pushing for their talents to be seen and felt in a society that only sees University door as a success, Alusine faced a lot of challenges and setbacks in trying to pursue his dreams. Alusine would take an hour of his study time to do his drawings that are related to issues of human interest, like mental health. Anytime he got leisure time; not fetching water, not looking for customers around his Lumley neighborhood, he will find a little corner at his backyard and start drawing.


Alusine Gibril Kamara artwork of mental health implications

At age 5, Alusine got inspired after spending most of his time with his elder brother Mr. Amidu Kamara who is an artist also. It was during those time that Alusine grew interested in drawing and artwork in general.

Alusine, like many young children, is coming from a poor family. His dream has always been to get support from any NGO’s, private institutions, or a humanitarian that will help him and support him with school learning materials, guidance, words of hope and help him get enrolled in a university to study arts and be graduated as a successful artist like Picasso.

In an exclusive interview with him at his home in Lumley, Alusine shared with me his experience, hopes, and next plans with us at Salone Messenger


Tell us about the path of artwork you are focus on and why?


‘’My path of artwork is to use my talent to talk about social issues affecting children and young people in Sierra Leone, in fact, when I realized that I had this talent in me and waking up every morning where we are asked to fetch water in at around 5: A.M  in the morning, at a time when one should be fast asleep, let alone in a country where her children and youthful population and engaged in drug abuse. I find this very troubling. I do not think as young people, we should grow up in such a society and become such type of people. I strongly believe that children and young people should grow up in a society where opportunities are there to go to school and live in dignify life, my passion of using my talent started when I woke up one morning, with my pencil and after fetching water, I could remember drawing an 8-year-old boy with a rope across his mouth, crying and with the words NOT AMONG. That artwork depicts my current predicament and that of many others who are born and grow up in a society where they wake up at 5:00 A.M in the morning to fetch water when they should be sleeping, where their parents discourage them to focus on their talents because the society they are born hasn’t nurtured much of such people. Where I find myself and that of many other contemporaries at the market places around 10:00 A.M selling cold water, running after each car for us to be able to feed our families when we should be in schools. This artwork I drew portrays the opposite of the society we find ourselves. I wanted our leaders and parents to know that this is not the society we should live in.  I didn’t have the heart or even voice to speak this louder for our leaders and families to understand our pitiable plight and that of many others in the streets of Freetown, so the best way to seek refuge is to do this drawing that I could take a look at whenever I want to describe children and young people in Sierra Leone’’

”NOT AMONG” A.G.K artwork of young boy growing in society that lacks opportunities for them to realize their potential


In one of your artworks, there is one of different faces joint together with a message of Mental Health problems. Tell us more about this artwork?


‘’Mental health is a problem that has blazing up in recent times due to the number of children and young people engaged  in it in sierra Leone. Since 2018, Watching some international news whenever I have the chance, I see lot of report on this troubling issue. In our country, many young people have engaged in taking drugs that affect their wellbeing which push them to do bad things like stealing, insulting their parents and end up destroying their future at a tender age.  With the drawing of those different faces side by side helps send out a message of how our young people look like when they take drugs, it shows that they are no longer normal when they take drugs. I want to help in adding a voice to this growing concern in the world.’’


In some of your artworks, you drew some past leaders and celebrities who are they and why did you choose to draw them?


‘’2 Pac Shakur, Michael Jordan, Michael  Jackson and others, Having watched YouTube videos of their inspiring journey, I realized that they served as a source of inspiration to many, they went through a lot of challenges to be where they were. I drew them because they had talents and most importantly most of them were born and grew up a society where opportunities were not available, faced with injustices, and otherwise did what they did to inspire others in their various field where they are good. The likes of Tupac Shakur, Michael Jackson, and many others. Some of them proved to the society that their talents are a profession too and should be respected. So putting their faces on a paper inspires me that I will someday prove to my parents and country that artwork is a profession that should be recognized and respected.’’


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Sallu Kamuskay

Sallu Kamuskay is a Sierra Leonean activist, storyteller, and blogger. He was born in Sierra Leone but later relocated to Guinea as a refugee because of the war in his country. Sallu Kamuskay uses his phone to engage on social media, under the name ‘’Salone Messenger’. He Co-Founded the Salone Messenger platform after his experience of the war, Ebola, and injustices. According to him, silence was the root cause of war, and of many social injustices, we continue to face as a nation. In 2013, during the Ebola crisis, Sallu Kamuskay took the risk and volunteered to fight Ebola. He spent some months in both safe and unsafe places; helping the victims and telling their sad stories. The election in 2018, left a divided country with communities fighting on tribal lines. This inspired Sallu Kamuskay to serve as the coordinator of the United Sierra Leone peace concert, which was organized in 4 major parts of the country, targeting violent communities and troubled youth. Sallu Kamuskay led a group of entertainers, activists, and organizations across the country on a peace tour, a program supported by the European Union, United Sierra Leone, Africa Union, ECOWAS, and the Messeh Leone Trust. Sallu Kamuakay has also served as a staff writer for the Hidden Voices Magazine.
Over the years, Sallu Kamuskay has been using his Techno phone to be able to tell stories, the phone he used to tell the story of Gbessay during Ebola who was admitted at one of the Ebola treatment centers after rumors that she had Ebola when the actual sickness was ulcer, she was almost abandoned at the treatment canter with no medication provided to her. She could have died. Sallu told the story via social media and was able to secure funding from the United Sierra Leone to buy her medication and advocated for her. She was later discharged and taken home, He did the same to a patient that died and was abandoned in the street, Sallu Kamuskay used his phone and shared the message across, the corps was later taken and buried. It could have been more disaster without his voice. The story of late America Stress 3-year-old daughter. The hero’s daughter was abandon after his father's death. He shared her sad story and was able to get a sister who has taken the child as her own and is currently providing her with educational support. The article of America Stress can be read on the link below http://ayvnewspaper.com/index.php/k2-categories/item/7350-america-stress-a-hero-to-recognize.
Sallu Kamuskay feels the stories of Gbessay, America stress and that of many others need to be told. The media house we have cannot better tell these stories, they are better reporters than telling human interest stories. He created the Salone Messenger platform and brought together passionate storytellers to be able to tell these compelling stories.

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