AN artist is bringing his latest exhibition inspired by his experiences in Kenya to the Malthouse Gallery at East Lambrook Manor Gardens.

Moish Sokal was inspired by several landmarks in the east African nation including an elephant orphanage, wildlife parks, the equator, and the coastal city Mombasa.

The artist, who lives in Norton-sub-Hamdon but is from Sydney, Australia, returned to New South Wales after two years away due to the pandemic, where he settled into a routine of morning swims and painting with watercolours. 

Moish said: “As the sunny days rolled by, my cache of watercolours inspired by a recent trip to Kenya was growing steadily - I felt I was back on track!”

However, a six-day period of heavy rain and flooding threatened to destroy his Kenya-inspired artwork.

“Daylight was so poor I had to retreat into my bedroom since it had the brightest light over my bed and paint there from the photos I had taken, which all of a sudden looked more like colourful exotic postcards,” he said. 

Moish hurriedly put all the paintings onto his highest shelves when the flooding threatened his flat and left to spend a night at an evacuation centre.

He returned when the floods started to recede and - to his relief - found his paintings had been spared by millimetres. 

It was the sound of rain that had inspired Moish to transform his Kenyan memories into watercolours, as he had arrived in Nairobi in a downpour. 

His first adventure in the country was a trip to hand-feed giraffes.

He said: “Facing these elegant animals, gently flapping long eyelashes as they stick out a huge blue tongue taking the food off your hand is an unforgettable experience.”

Crossing the equator was another highlight of his journey. 

He said: “Watching the water turning clockwise down the drain and, six metres south, the water turning anti-clockwise was an extraordinary experience.”

After moving to England in 1990, Moish has held several one-man exhibitions - including his 'Safari' exhibition at East Lambrook Manor Gardens last year.

He is looking forward to returning to the Malthouse Gallery to showcase his latest exhibition, 'Postcards from Kenya'. 

The exhibition will be held in the gallery located at the manor gardens in Silver Street, East Lambrook. 

‘Postcards from Kenya’ will be open from Saturday, June 4 until Saturday, July 23 between 10am and 5pm. 

It will not be open on Sundays and Mondays. 

Entry is free and booking is not required.