One of Solomon Islands pioneer artists has died
One of the country's best-known artists died in Honiara on Sunday while doing the job he loves. Charles Manata collapsed and died while painting murals at a home in Panatina.
The Solomon Islands Artists Association yesterday mourned the death of Mr Manata. "We've lost one of our pioneers. It was a great loss to us," the Association's vice president Peter Kennedy Bubulu said yesterday.
He described Mr Manata as a person of great compassion who wanted to see the development of art in Solomon Islands. Mr Bubulu, who has known Mr Manata since 1988, said his decision to become an artist was influenced by Mr Manata's work.
"I first saw his work in primary school text books. Later on when I moved to Honiara, I saw some of his works in various buildings around town. All I can say about Mr Manata is that he was an unselfish person who is always willing to share his skills and talents to young artists," Mr Bubulu said.
Mr Manata is a former curator of the National Art Gallery in Honiara. He was also a former president of the Artist Association. Records have also shown that he was one of the founders of the Solomon Star newspaper, although he left the paper some years down the track.
In November last year, he got a job as an interpreter with the Case Support Unit. As an interpreter, he was required to interpret court proceedings from English to pidgin and vice versa. A statement from the Case Support Unit said Mr Manata was a man of great experience.
"Charles will be greatly missed by his colleagues for his extremely high standard of interpreting both at the High Court and Magistrate Court. He is always smiling and ready to greet you whenever he is met. He always ensures that his interpreting duties are never questioned and that he does his job in an extremely high standard. His sudden passing is indeed a great loss to us and has left a vacuum that will take some time to be filled," the statement said.
The Solomon Star was unable to establish the cause of his death.
Source: Solomon Star