Julio Rizhi (b. 1991) is a contemporary artist based in Harare, Zimbabwe, whose practice encompasses the repurposing of found objects and discarded materials.
Born in Mbare, Harare, Rizhi studied fine art at the National Gallery of Zimbabwe’s visual art studio before leaving to pursue and refine his experimental practice. In the subsequent years, while based at Chinembiri Studios, Rizhi worked alongside several of Zimbabwe’s leading new-generation artists including Gresham Tapiwa Nyaude, Moffat Takadiwa and Wycliffe Mundopa.
Rizhi’s practise is deeply embedded in the complexities of urban life in Harare. His work interrogates connections between consumption and its outcomes through the socio-ethical prism of contemporary Zimbabwean life. His dystopic and dysmorphic constructions speak to environmental decay and the social cost of high-density living such as youth unemployment and addiction.
Darkly humoured, Rizhi uses the seductively bright colours of the discarded plastics he melts as a metaphor for the promises of a better future, often proffered but never fulfilled. Oft constructed with the inclusion of found mesh wire, each sculptural work is arresting in its tactile complexity.
Rizhi has exhibited extensively in Zimbabwe and has participated in international art fairs in Paris, Miami and Marrekesh.