At Guruve, we believe in doing business the right way…
We promote new artists so they can carve a future for themselves and their families. Buying direct, often at the artist’s asking price, our visits can generate the equivalent of months’, or even a year’s, salary.
No surprise that we are favourite customers, with artists often keeping special pieces just for us.
But it’s about more than money. The way we do business also sets us apart. From the very beginning, we have treated artists with respect and kindness, building long-term relationships based on trust and friendship.
Since our first trip to Zimbabwe in 2000, Guruve has brought the sculptors at an arts centre for aspiring young artists donations of specialist tools, raw materials, heavy lifting equipment – in addition to enough business to fund the installation of electricity supply, and the construction (and later rebuild) of a central gallery, an office and thatched shelters.
Best of all, in the early days, we celebrated the end of each buying trip with a party, with food, drink, music and dancing for everyone. Sadly, this has since become politically sensitive and we have had to tone things down!
In Bulawayo, we financed a two-day workshop for young artists in 2002, organised by the Visual Artists’ Association of Bulawayo (VAAB). It was so popular, we repeated the venture in 2003!
Every year, we return 10% of the profits made (if we make a profit!) to the individual artists as a gift. Our artists tell us we are their only promoters to do this, and we receive many messages of thanks from grateful recipients.
“We want to thank you for the support of 10% profit-sharing you are giving us, advance payment for us the prepare nice pieces on time and we also thank you for the support of tools you are giving us as the Centre. I hope if we have more other customers like you who help us as like you do, we can go miles away. Me as Treasurer […], I would like to thank you for your support on behalf of other artists.”
Onias Mupumha, Treasurer, CAC, November 2011
We donate 10% of income from sales of Gambian art to a charity providing education to disadvantaged Gambian children.
We are the good guys in African art and we can prove it. Since we began trading in 2000, we have given more than £40,000 in donations and gifts directly to the individual artists we promote, and to group associations and charities, and raised a further >£20,000 for charity. This section should put your mind at ease about our ethics… so challenge other dealers to see if they can PROVE they do the same.
Guruve’s donations made directly to artists or to UK/African charities
The Guruve story – who’s behind the name and why do we do this?
Young sculptors at an centre for aspiring sculptors
Arts centre gallery donation – Guruve funds the rebuild in 2015
Sponsored workshop for artists and schoolchildren in Bulawayo