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Artist Bio.


Born on the 21st June 1999, in Cape Town, Digital artist, Aphiwe Mhlanga creates under the name Harmonica Sunbeam. 

"Growing up I had a deep appreciation and affinity for music actually, and for awhile I thought that my life was gonna follow that path in some form or other. Itwasn’t until high school when I quite randomly decided to take art as a subject that I felt what I believe to be a very fervent curiosity. There hadn’t been any epiphany or a pre-inclination that I can remember that made me choose it. Up until about 2019 I was a very “spur of the moment” kind of girl so that decisiondoesn’t surprise me at all.

When it comes to my art I think from the beginning I think I was very drawn to space and texture, less concerned with composition and form, or execution really. In high school specifically what really mattered to me was dramatic spaces and “fun” textures, but I lacked a skill set and a knowledge base that would help me execute it properly and make better use of my time and effort.
It’s been really enjoyable seeing how my priorities are so clearly reflected in my work and how in turn my work has evolved so drastically in a matter of years or weeks. I did photography, painted portraits, drew tangerines, did charcoal sketches, sculpted lilies etc. I tried as much as I could so that I could see for myself what was out there and learn what I liked and what I wanted to like. In my experimentations I found that I don’t like to define myself by or be a  “master” of any one medium. I like to think that art is a very explorative space and much like the seasons in my life, my tastes and preferences will change.
I’m currently in a time of sculpture and I have some huge things in the works but that’s due to what life has been throwing me. I always “things happen the way they need to” and it’s for me to go and grow.

2022 was a year in which I produced the largest body of work of my career in digital. My first collection “In Step with Humanity” was an exclusive drop that lasted only 2 weeks and showcased a wide variety of my earliest explorations of digital collage and human emotion. 

Being so unaccustomed to the art space comes with so many advantages, finding people who’s art and stories I connect with but also just experiencing everything for the first time is always a pleasure. I know in a few years I’m going to look back and be glad I enjoyed every minute of the uneasiness and nerves and pure excitement of it all." 




Harmonica Sunbeam

Isle of the Downtrodden and the Sombre.

Digital drawing printed on paper. 

Acetated, unframed.


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