Francisco Van-Dúnem, or ‘Van’, as he is more commonly referred to in and around Luanda, was brought up in the Angolan province of Icolo e Bengo. Studying in his native country as well as in Portugal and Cuba, Van-Dúnen holds a masters degree in art education, while his interests unite the visual arts and architecture. He is a founding member of the Angolan National Union of Fine Artists (NUFA), and winner of the 2008 National Arts and Culture Prize. In addition to his artistic practice, he is currently a professor in architecture at the Universidade Agostinho Neto in Luanda. Previous professorships and directorships have taken place at various art institutions in Angola.
A dedicated painter, Van-Dúnen is recognised for his vibrant depictions of the environment, fiction, everyday life, and the relationship between man and animal. Since 1977, his works have steadily been shown in solo and group shows throughout Africa, Europe, and the Americas.