Fiko was born in Estcourt in the KwaZulu-Natal Midlands and in 2000, and at the age of 17, completed her education at the Sisatina School in Loskop where her mother lives.
Two years later one of Ardmore’s painters, Mbusi Mfuphi, organised for her to meet Fée Halsted.
Fiko had no schooling in art but joined Fée at Springvale Farm in Rosetta and worked alongside Angel Gabela who, with Fée, taught her to develop her natural artistic talent.
In 2004, Fée moved to the Caversham studio and Fiko faced an upheaval in her life. Her friend Angel died of HIV/Aids. As a true friend, Fiko stayed with Angel’s mother in Rosetta and helped look after Angel’s newborn baby. She commuted back and forth to Caversham carrying home pots to paint and returning with completed pieces.
Fée said: “Fiko really proved to me that she had the determination and diligence to become part of the Ardmore family. Once Angel’s baby was old enough, Fiko joined us at Caversham and now lives on the property.”
Fiko aspires to follow in the painting footsteps of Punch Shabalala, who has been with Ardmore since 1989 and is one of the studio’s leading painters.
She has participated in all of Ardmore’s exhibitions since 2004 and is one of three sisters who work together in the painting studio. The others are Mbusi and Nondumiso Mfuphi.