Celso Chan a.k.a. "Chan Nini" was born in Maputo, Mozambique in the early 80's. He was born into a country struggling to create an economic and cultural identity. This struggle affected the formation of Celso's multiculturalidentity and efforts to have a deeper understanding of his culture. Primarily self-taught, Celso has been drawn to art since childhood, using it to understand and express human emotion and struggle, from the microcosm of his family to the larger world of the big city – be it Maputo, Cape Town or New York.
He has traveled extensively, from studying urban policy and environmental management in New York to spending a month backpacking India, his creative journey began with his introduction to yoga. His journey through physical aspects of yoga opened`1`q a creative mind-space for him to explore music, photography and the use of paper to express his emotions about the world.
His first show, 'Meditation' in Maputo, Mozambique at the Fundacao Fernando Leite Couto was the first step into the public world of art. 'Meditation' was his self-aware exploration as an artist, a reflection in times of struggle because of his wife's illness. Using a simple continuous ink line and watercolor, he expressed his emotions and awareness of the geographic space around him. His drawing 'Twins' embodies this connection between physical space and emotion. 'Meditation II' was held in Johannesburg at the We are Ants Concept Gallery, bringing together some of the same pieces from Mozambique with the addition of two new ones, 'Vidas,' and 'Generosity and Greed.’