Grand opening of five new exhibitions for summer season at the Iziko South African National Gallery

  • Posted: Nov 18, 2010

The Iziko South African National Gallery will be hosting a grand opening event on Saturday, 27 November at 17h30 for 18h00, in celebration of five exciting new exhibitions.

About the exhibitions

Borders, an exhibition from the Bamako Encounters 8th African Photographic Biennale, provides a unique opportunity to see the contemporary photography from Africa and its diaspora. This is the first time that this Pan-African biennale has been shown in the sub-Saharan region. Curated by Michket Krifa and Laura Serani, this panorama of contemporary photographic creativity in Africa revolves around the theme of ‘borders’, includes more than 230 works and brings together the work of 40 photographers and 13 video artists.

A Vigil of Departure, a retrospective of Louis Maqhubela endeavours to remind the public about this South African artist, returning Maqhubela from obscurity and re-inscribing him into the local art history. Maqhubela's exposure to European artists and abstract painting offered him a decisive means to break out of the conventions and stylistic mannerisms of a genre labeled ‘Township Art’. This new direction meant the end of figurative expressionism and the beginning of a personal engagement with modernist abstraction, using line, form, shape and colour as expressive means in and of themselves. This exhibition is curated by Marilyn Martin.

Roger Ballen and Boarding House is Ballen’s recent body of work, in which his photographs evince a sense of the theatrical, a tension between the fictional and constructed, and that which is absolutely real and present at the moment he exposes the photograph. In the imaginative worlds that Ballen creates, puppies, rats, wire, drawings and old furniture perform roles within the claustrophobic confines of a door-less stage that are part-tragic, part-comedic, and wholly disturbing. This is contextualised with selected work from shows such as Dorps, Outland and Shadow Chamber. Curated by Pam Warne.

Imagining Beauty – Body Adornment including Young SA Designers is an exhibition curated by Carol Kaufmann where textiles and items of adornment from Iziko’s permanent collections are in conversation with a selection of Mercedes-Benz Fashion Awards’ winning designers such as Black Coffee, Craig Native, Darkie and others shown in Berlin last year. These designers have taken inspiration from our continent’s rich visual heritage to create global fashion with a distinctive African signature. One can expect to see Southern African beadwork; the work of Michael Kra’s collaboration with San artists, a rare Rwandan crown, worn by the Royalty of the Great Lakes region shortly before its collapse, and Irma Stern’s significant portraits of Queen Gicanda drawn in 1942.

In Context, curated by Liza Essers, presents a unique opportunity to view a diverse group of contemporary international and South African artists who explore the dynamics and tensions of place, in reference to the African continent and its varied and complex iterations. Wide-ranging and frequently provocative the exhibition features the works by artists such Yinka Shonibare, El Anatsui, Kara Walker, Jenny Holzer, Robin Rhode, Candice Breitz and Mikhail Subotzky among others. They engage with a number of pressing questions about space, context, and geography. Their connection to the continent might be one they have inherited from the history of slavery, or from the displacements of Diaspora and exile.

Image: Kader Attia [Algeria-France]. Rochers Carrés (2009) © courtesy Kader Attia and Christian Nagel Gallery (Berlin and Cologne).

Text & Photographs © Iziko Museums.
Artworks & Artwork Reproductions © Featured Artists.
No photographs of artworks, images or design components incorporating artworks may be reproduced, sold or transmitted in any form without written permission from Iziko Museums.

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