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A vibrant art centre and platform for artistic exchange where visual and performing artists come to create, learn, inspire, exhibit and perform


Nafasi Art Space was founded in 2008 by a small group of Tanzanian Artists with the aim of improving access to and widening participation in the visual arts in Tanzania. We are Tanzania’s leading centre for contemporary visual and performing arts. It is a vibrant community of artists, musicians, dancers, performers and technicians, based in the industrial area of Mikocheni B, Dar es Salaam.

Nafasi Art Space hosts over 20 studios and workshop spaces and multiple galleries and performance platforms. We offer regular programmes including training and workshops, art talks, and public events, such as film screenings, exhibitions, concerts, festivals, and public art fairs. On average, Nafasi attracts more than 1000 visitors every month.

Nafasi’s platform has generated an organic ecosystem where the arts community can thrive, enabling artistic and cultural entrepreneurship for many young Tanzanians.


Enriching and furthering human potential through the medium of contemporary arts.


Overall Objective

To be a centre of excellence that promotes the creativity and professionalism of Tanzanian contemporary artists through training, exposure, cross cultural dialogue, and collaborative artistic endeavours.

Core Values & Beliefs

Our values are: Inclusivity, Creativity, Integrity, Generosity, Authenticity, and Cooperation

Our guiding beliefs are:

Artistic integrity and independence: We believe in protecting freedom of expression and providing a safe and encouraging space for artists to create work they believe in without fear of censorship or repression

Exchange and open dialogue: We believe in the intrinsic value of artistic collaboration and critical discourse about art to challenge, inspire, and energise the artistic community, thereby driving innovation and creativity

Social transformation through art: We believe that access to and participation in culture is a fundamental human right, and that art has the potential to create positive change in society.

Artist-centred Ethos

We engage in collective decision-making and strive to ensure that all of our organisational actions and plans are in line with the primary interests of the artists, recognizing the power of the artist to build a better world.




The Nafasi’s Board is made up of artists, strategists, entrepreneurs, advocacy specialists, and more. In charge of Nafasi’s overall governance, their role is to ensure that Nafasi is achieving its vision and mission and living up to its values. Nafasi’s board members serve on a voluntary basis and meet at least quarterly, in order to provide guidance and leadership to Nafasi’s management. If you are interested in joining Nafasi’s board, please don’t hesitate to contact our Director, Lilian Mushi


Artist Development

Audience Engagement

Partnerships and Networks

Sustainability and Resilience


Nafasi’s team is committed to seeing the arts grow and flourish in Tanzania. They keep the organisation running on a day-to-day basis, working to make sure Nafasi remains the leading contemporary art centre in Dar es Salaam. Stop by and say hello!

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A majority of the staff working at Nafasi are artists. Some say that working here is almost a calling. To them Nafasi is an essential place for artists like themselves to exist and thrive. They feel that the work Nafasi does is presently redefining the role of art in Tanzanian society.

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