Bahari Blue #19: The Soothing Art of Mogau Kekena

May 15, 20203 min read

Mogau Keana is a South African storyboard artist, illustrator and animator. He started pursuing art when he was in primary school and continued into university. He studied Multimedia at UJ Faculty of Art Design and Architecture (FADA) where he majored in Video and Animation. Right after that, he taught digital art classes for about a year.

In 2019, Mogau illustrated the children’s book, Yes Yanga! by Refiloe Moahloi. Later that year, he exhibited at the South African Book Fair.

Mogau’s art is characterized by 2 distinct styles. One features angular lines and calm colours and the other, a painterly style that uses hard lines to highlight important features while maintaining a brushstroke aesthetic. Generally, Mogau’s art is soothing.

Mogau Kekana’s soothing art often depicts relatable characters in mundane situations being themselves. From a man grabbing a beer to a woman selling in a market to waiting for a bus with a parent, Mogau brings reality to life through gorgeous, contrasting colors.

I want my work to reflect my experiences as an African youth based on the southern parts of this continent residing in Hillbrow. 

Mogau Kekana via Creative Nestlings

Mogau is part of the Creative Nestlings team along with Noma Amadi working on a series of mini-comics to stop disinformation in the wake of COVID-19.

Go on an adventure with Mogau’s art.


Space Girl by Mogau Kekana
Space Girl by Mogau Kekana
Monkey Business by Mogau Kekana
Monkey Business by Mogau Kekana
When they see us by Mogau Kekana
When They See Us
Dogs Box fanart by Mogau Kekana. Dogs Box is an upcoming project by Panda Exclamated and Tako Universe about dogs boxing and the politics of the sport
Dogs Box fanart. Dogs Box is a project by Tako Universe and Panda Exclamated about dogs boxing, and the politics behind the action-packed sport.
Joburg City by Mogau Kekana
Joburg City by Mogau Kekana
Illustration of father and son by Mogau Kekana
Chiko and Father by Mogau
Illustration of a Johannesburg apartment by Mogau Kekana
Johannesburg by Mogau
Gemini illustration by Mogau Kekana from the Star-Sign Afro sign illustration series.
Gemini by Mogau from the Star-Sign Afro illustration series.
The Streets Will Be Missed by Mogau Kekana
The Streets Will Be Missed by Mogau

Bonus Art of Mogau Kekana

We can’t enough of Mogau’s unique style so we added some more. ?

Art of Mogau Kekana
Art of Mogau Kekana
Art of Mogau Kekana

See more of Mogau Kekana’s work on Instagram, Behance, Artstation and Pinterest.

Bahari Blue curated by Squid Mag's Kadi Yao Tay and Kofi Sydney Asare
Bahari Blue Series

Bahari Blue is Squid Mag’s Kadi Yao Tay and Kofi Sydney Asare’s and illustrator Bolaji “Art Nerd X” Olaloye’s scrapbook of favourite African (including the diaspora sometimes) artists they love, are inspired by and believe the whole world needs to know about.

So far we’ve featured Alfred AchiampongVenus BambisaMalcolm WopéSimangaliso SibayaKofi OfosuIfesinachi OrjiekweKudzai NgunduSalim BusuruRodney Tawanda NgunduJuni BaPoka ArtsNatasha NayoHanson AkatttiBertil SvanekiaerCollyde Prime, Nils Britwum, Hélio Januário and Mika Hirwa. See all the Bahari Blue features here.

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