Paulo Kapela was born in the Province of Uige, Angola. First and foremost a self-directed artist, Kapela began painting in the early 1960s upon enrolling at the Poto-Poto School of Painting in Brazzaville, Republic of Congo. When the time arrived to return to Angola some years later, he became known within his social circle as the ‘spiritual father’ of the legendary artists’ collective living and working at the National Union of Fine Artists (NUFA).
Following substantial recognition that led him to win the ICBC Prize (International Centre for Bantu Civilisations) in Brazzaville, in 2003, Kapela’s work was selected for the Luanda Triennial. He has since been shown in many group exhibitions, including Check List: Luanda Pop at the Venice Biennale in Venice, Italy, in 2007 and more recently in You Love Me, You Love Me Not, a collaboration between the Sindika Dokolo Foundation and the municipality of Porto, Portugal. The latter took place at the Galeria Municipal Almeida Garrett in Porto, in 2015. Kapela’s work has been acquired by private and public collections, including the Sindika Dokolo Foundation in Angola.