Liz Ogumbo is an artist, fashion designer, recording and performing artist, radio host and radio and TV producer whose multi-faceted talents have earned her a place amongst Africa’s most admired creatives.
Currently based in Johannesburg, Ogumbo was born in Kenya and named for her great-great-grandmother Elizabeth Loye, a talented singer and performer. Growing up in a musical family and community helped shaped Ogumbo’s early creativity, but she credits her father for nurturing the heritage that plays a consistently important role in her creative life. In particular, her father taught Ogumbo the Luo songs that surface as a strong element of her current musical output while her mother imbued in her the Christian lifestyle and values that remain her mainstay.
A fiercely proud Kenyan, Ogumbo’s journey has taken her from Kenya to the USA and now South Africa where her entrepreneurial spirit sees her constantly finding ways to bring her passions to the world. Amongst these is her Johannesburg studio from where she runs her style consultancy and designs under her own label, creating intricate pieces that depict the modern, fashion-savvy woman. Her studio is also the base for several other projects including hosting the Fashion Lab Africa show on CliffCentral – Africa’s first fashion business radio show. Central to Ogumbo’s creativity is her self-described KenSoul – her Kenyan Soul – which is compellingly, and beautifully, threaded through all aspects of her creative life.
The KenSoul Experience
The KenSoul Experience finds particular expression in her music, with Ogumbo embracing her roots and culture in two albums that highlight her passionate belief in fostering relationships and projects that advance the African creative industry. Traversing multiple influences, and expressed in Luo, Swahili, English and French, Ogumbo’s music reflects her genre-agnostic sound, her Kenyan soul and her life experiences. Her acclaimed debut, simply titled KenSoul, was released in 2010, and its 2018 follow-up, KenSoul, The Lotus Chapter, is currently cementing Ogumbo’s reputation as a skilled songwriter, able to tell stories through songs that touch on love, womanhood, fashion, humour and much more.
Since 2010, Ogumbo has performed on multiple live platforms including HIFA, Lake of Stars, Indian Ocean Music Festival, Afropicks Redbull Music Academy, Africa Leadership Network, Africa 2.0 awards, SANAA Festival, Design Indaba and the Turkel Fair. With a vision to bring economically, socially and environmentally sustainable fashion to the world while empowering African communities, Ogumbo is an African leader to watch.