Archive: Issue No. 56, April 2002

Go to the current edition for SA art News, Reviews & Listings.

24.04.02 'Playtime' festival at Newtown Precinct
24.04.02 Fiona Couldridge and Walter Oltmann at Standard Bank Gallery
24.04.02 Leora Farber at The | Premises
24.04.02 'Freedom 1001 Miniatures' at Spaza Art
24.04.02 'Dimension: Fire' by the Virus Corporation at Carfax
24.04.02 Market Photo Workshop book launch
24.04.02 Chair exhibition at Merely Mortal
24.04.02 Diana Hyslop at Millennium II
24.04.02 Beverly Price at Alastair Findlay
17.04.02 'New Acquisitions' at Gallery on the Square
10.04.02 Doreen Southwood and Antoinette Murdoch at Spark!
10.04.02 Nel Erasmus and Adele Hamblin at the Art Space
10.04.02 Sue Williamson at the Goodman Gallery
10.04.02 Colbert Mashile and Tamar Mason at Art on Paper
10.04.02 Mixed bag at the Little Louvre
10.04.02 Bag Factory artists-in-residence exhibition
10.04.02 Lucas Bambo and Ferdie Hartzenberg at Absa Gallery
10.04.02 Trevor Coleman at the Alliance Française
03.04.02 Jürgen Schadeberg book launch at Exclusive Books
03.04.02 Artists-in-residence at MTN Art Institute
03.04.02 VACA exhibition at the Sandton Civic Gallery
03.04.02 Moses Seleko and Ben Nsusha at Millennium II
20.03.02 Karl Kugel at MuseumAfrica

17.04.02 Lionel Smit, Liam Lynch, Zander Blom at Millennium Gallery
10.04.02 'Oer Baan' at the Open Window
27.03.02 'Transmigrations' at Pretoria Art Museum
27.03.02 'Jabulisa 2000' at Pretoria Art Museum

'Playtime' festival at Newtown Precinct

Initiated by the French Institute of South Africa (IFAS) and partnered by the Johannesburg Development Agency (JDA), 'Playtime' is a multidisciplinary arts festival with a special focus on contemporary installation and video art.

'Playtime' will run for five days in the first week of May and takes place on and around the Newtown Cultural Precinct, with installations by local and international artists housed in MuseumAfrica. Moeketsi Koena of Inzalo Dance Theatre will be doing a series of performances included in a programme with a bias towards the creative arts from the continent and diaspora.

Watch this space for programme details.

Fiona Couldridge

Fiona Couldridge
Fragments: Jellyfish
Mixed media and oil

Walter Oltmann

Walter Oltmann
Disarticulated Flower
Aluminum and copper wire and brass upholstery studs
250 x 1800 x 330 cm

Fiona Couldridge and Walter Oltmann at Standard Bank Gallery

Fiona Couldridge is known for her high-relief, small-scale paintings depicting the textures of insect exoskeletons. 'Fragments' is her second solo show, this time concentrating on sea creatures. In her abstract fragments, she attempts to frame the emotive or instinctive fascination we have with these creatures, by articulating this through qualities in the paintings that embrace sensuousness and tactility. The detailed, magnified and abstracted skins begin to resemble aerial landscapes. As a counterpoint to this, Couldridge also shows a series of drawings of magnified surfaces of trees. As the references to sea creatures often appear land-like, the trees appear bodily in their abstracted and fragmented state. You can see her work at

Couldridge has a perfect exhibition partner in Walter Oltmann, whose Standard Bank Young Artist exhibition finally comes to Johannesburg. A neat catalogue with text by Brenda Schmahmann accompanies the exhibition, which features his own wirework "transformation of the commonplace". Like Couldridge, he has a bit of a thing for creepy crawlies. The press release recalls an anecdote about the transport - on foot through the streets of Durban - from store room to the Durban Art Gallery of his giant python held in two equally giant hands. A posse of council employees cleared a path ahead while a few formed a circle around to protect it from inquisitive hands. Questions were asked while an impromptu vanguard was formed to lead the procession. The spectacle was inevitable - see if it does the same for you. See Virginia MacKenny's review of this show at the Durban Art Gallery and Sue Williamson's review of the recent Cape Town exhibition.

Opening: April 30
Closing: May 25

Standard Bank Gallery, corner Simmonds and Fredericks streets, Johannesburg
Tel: 011 636 4231
Hours: Mon - Fri 8am - 4.30pm, Sat 9am - 1pm

Leora Farber

Leora Farber
Corpa Delicata
Wax chocolates

Leora Farber

Leora Farber
Corpus Delicti
Still from video

Leora Farber at The | Premises

A performance, happening, video shoot and installation, "event" is the easiest way to describe this unique happening inspired by Leora Farber's remarkable exhibition 'All You Can Be' at the Aardklop Festival last year. That exhibition included a video piece entitled Corpus Delecti, featuring a primodial ooze of bubbling, molten wax. Alongside graphic footage of cosmetic surgery and Farber's abject wax sculptures, this small interlude seemed to indicate a new desire in Farber's work that has something to do with "undoing" her usually obsessive, labour-intensive process.

Corpa Delicata (delicate/delicious bodies) focuses on the slow melting of 750 exquisite handmade, flesh-like wax chocolates, painstakingly produced over a period of five months. The installation, which will be on view in its original state for one hour, functions as the "set" and raw materials for a new, experimental video piece, which will be filmed on the opening night and exhibited in place of the original installation four days later. The experiment occupies a risky space between contingency and obsessive control, and the scale and labour-intensive nature of the pre-production for this project means that there can be no rehearsal for the filming process. For this event, The | Premises becomes a controlled film-set and live workspace, with viewers performing as witnesses and ultimately participants.

The associations with body and flesh that the chocolate simulacra invoke are ambivalently gendered, but the process they go through from solid to liquid and back again inevitably refers to issues relating to Western constructs of beauty, control, bodily boundaries and desire.

Including the limited edition, boxed wax chocolates which will be on sale at the gallery, exactly 1 000 handmade wax chocolates have been specifically produced for this event.

For this event, The | PREMISES will be a controlled environment. For safety reasons, visitors are requested to leave bags, jackets and similar items outside the gallery.

Opening: April 27 at 6pm. Filming will begin at 7pm sharp
Closing: May 11

The | Premises, Johannesburg Civic Theatre, off Loveday Street, Braamfontein
Tel: 011 403 3408 ext 184 (Boy Bangala)

Special hours during this exhibition: April 27: 6pm - 8pm (first installation, performance and filming); May 2 - 11: 12pm - 8pm (second installation); closed May 5/6.

Spaza Art

Miniature at Spaza Art

'Freedom 1001 Miniatures' at Spaza Art

To commemorate Freedom Day, Troyeville's Spaza Art hosts an exhibition of tiny visual celebrations of democracy and constitutional freedom.

Opening: April 27 at 5.30pm
Closing: May 31

Spaza Art, 19 Wilhemina Street, Troyeville
Tel: 011 614 9354
Hours: Mon - Fri 10am - 5 pm, Sat 10am - 2pm

'Dimension: Fire' by the Virus Corporation at Carfax

Underground events designers and art collective the Virus Corporation host 'Fire' at Carfax this week. As part of the dark festivities, they also debut a performance piece titled The Bitch, Lilith on dancefloor 2. There are a range of DJs, "you make it - we play it" music sessions, a fetish room, visual displays, fire shows and body painting. An art exhibition featuring work by Alistair Machlahlan, Chaldea Laue, Konrad Schoeman, StarLuna, Stella, Anastasya Eliseeva, Donna Boyd and Kate Skinstad provides a contemporary art reading of the evening's central focus. Cover charge is R20.

April 26 at 9pm. Performance begins at 10pm


Market Photo Workshop book launch

Sharp! is the very appropriate title of the Market Photography Workshop (MPW) book that will be launched with an exhibition, party and general shindig to celebrate one of the most successful community-based projects in the visual image history of Johannesburg and probably South Africa. As street slang implying "cool", "OK" or "right on", "sharp" also describes the generally preferred focus of a "good" photograph as well as the focus of the workshop itself.

The MPW started in 1989 as the only community-based photographic training institution in Johannesburg. The Workshop offers bursaries and provides affordable photographic education among groups that historically have had limited access to the media. Over the years the MPW has proved to be an accessible and viable source of education, equipping aspiring photographers with the necessary photographic skills and allowing them to generate income and secure employment. Many prominent photographers active in the market today began their careers at the MPW.

April 26 at 6 for 6.30pm

Market Theatre complex, corner Bree and Wolhuter Streets, Newtown
Tel: (011) 832 1641

Chair exhibition at Merely Mortal

'The Great Merely Mortal Chair Exhibition' allows a free association between art and design at this great venue for kicking back with a cocktail and engaging in the art of conversation. The show features interior scenes with well-loved and specially crafted chairs by artists Joan Abrahams, Walter Oltmann, Owen Ndou, Mark Swart and others, as well as contributions by chair designers and importers @work, Dauphin, Twiice International, Pago, Alutec, Modutec, My Design, the Design Centre, Tinderbox and Charles Storr.

Opening: April 25 at 6pm

Merely Mortal, 356 Jan Smuts Ave, Craighall Tel: 011 326 3820 (Heather Greig) Email:

Diana Hyslop

Diana Hyslop

Diana Hyslop at Millennium II

Johannesburg-based painter Diana Hyslop shows recent works. Hyslop has participated in a number of exhibitions locally as well as Thupelo and Thapong workshops, taught art at Streetwise and was resident at the Santa Monica Fine Arts Studio in California in 1993.

Opening: April 24 at 6pm
Closing: May 18

Millennium II, 19 Jellicoe Avenue, Rosebank
Tel: 011 880 5270
Hours: Tues - Fri 11am - 6pm, Sat 12pm - 5pm

Beverly Price at Alastair Findlay

Contemporary jeweller and sculptor Beverly Price currently shows two large sculptural pieces in Alastair Findlay's showcase window, opposite Franco's restaurant in Parkview. Call her on 011 485 5053 for more information.

Alastair Findlay Showcase, 54 Tyrone Avenue, Parkview
Tel: 011 486 2940

Mimmo Paladino

Mimmo Paladino
Etching and aquatint
298 x 408 mm

'New Acquisitions' at Gallery on the Square

Gallery on the Square presents a collection of original etchings, lithographs and ceramics by a cast of big names including Gillian Ayres, Marc Chagall, Jim Dine, Sam Francis, David Hockney, Howard Hodgkin, William Kentridge, Marino Marini, Henry Moore, Mimmo Paladino, Victor Pasmore, Pablo Picasso, Frank Stella and Edoardo Villa.

Opening: Thursday April 25 at 6.30pm

Gallery on the Square, Sandton Square, Sandown
Tel: 011 784 2847
Fax: 011 784 2849
Hours: Mon - Thurs 10am - 6pm, Fri - Sat 9am - 5pm, Sun 10am - 2pm

Antoinette Murdoch

Antoinette Murdoch
From 'Gereformeerd II'

'Eksie Perfeksie' - Doreen Southwood and Antoinette Murdoch at Spark!

Doreen Southwood and Antoinette Murdoch come together in a show that promises to bring a breath of fresh air to the art-women-home triad that often looks so very Seventies in the hands of less accomplished and self-critically sharp artists. Both are in their 20s and are, in their own words, bound by "mood altering medication and domestic crafts ... [and] dealing with issues of obsession and mental illness, striving to find the perfect balance between fear and love, order and chaos".

Southwood had a successful solo show entitled 'Too Close for Comfort' at Bell-Roberts in Cape Town last year, while Murdoch's 1996 show 'Trane Trekkers' ('Tearjerkers') was followed by the equally successful 'Gereformeerd II' ('Reformed II') in 1998.

Opening: April 17 at 6pm with guest speaker Kathryn Smith
Closing: May 12

Spark!, 10 Louis Road, Orchards
Tel: (011) 622 8297
Pieter Vorster 082 574 2152; Glynnis Jackson 083 836 1210
Hours: Mon - Sat 10am till café-bar closes, Sun 10am - noon

'Timeshift' - Nel Erasmus and Adele Hamblin at the Art Space

Seventy-three-year-old abstract painter Nel Erasmus collaborates with 33-year-old commercial photographer Adele Hamblin in an exhibition appropriately titled 'Timeshift', that seeks to unite two generations of image-makers through digital technology. The invitation is over-designed and the descriptors applied to Hamblin ("neo Surrealist" and "conceptual photographer") run the risk of over-determining the exhibition before it's even opened.

Check out their respective websites at and

Opening: April 14 at 5pm
Closing: May 11

The Art Space, 3 Hetty Avenue, Fairland
Tel/fax: (011) 678 1206
Cell: 082 651 4702

Sue Williamson

Sue Williamson
'From the Inside'
Installation view

Sue Williamson - 'From the Inside' at the Goodman Gallery

Sue Williamson's 'From the Inside' project, which consists of a series of double portraits, visual and textual, of people living with HIV/AIDS - opens this week at the Goodman. The idea behind the series was to put messages out into the world that would go beyond graffiti or advertising slogans. The series was conceptualised when Williamson was invited to make work for the international conference on AIDS in Durban during July 2000, and has been worked on since then with six pieces produced for the Joubert Park Public Art Project.

Williamson will be also be showing Can't Forget, Can't Remember, the interactive CD-Rom dealing with two cases that came before the South African TRC and which has travelled around the world to critical acclaim from art critics, but some criticism from the digerati of new media.

Opening: April 13 at noon
Closing: May 11

Goodman Gallery, 163 Jan Smuts Avenue, Parkwood
Tel: (011) 788 1113
Fax: (011) 788 9887
Hours: Tues - Fri 9.30am - 5.30pm, Sat 9.30am - 4pm

Colbert Mashile

Colbert Mashile

Tamar Mason

Tamar Mason

Colbert Mashile and Tamar Mason at Art on Paper

"Please join us for a calabash of home brew", reads the invitation to the exhibition 'Insider/Outsider', featuring painter, draughtsman and major rising star Colbert Mashile showing alongside master ceramicist Tamar Mason. I hope it's for real, but even if not, this should be a powerful but intimate exhibition and one that asks important questions about the role of the traditional in contemporary society, with a focus on male and female circumcision.

Mason works in clay, bronze and with engraved cattle horns. Her sculptural clay vessels are handbuilt and many are deliberately rendered "useless" by being drilled with holes and studded with upholstery pins. Mashile renders what he terms "the mental big pictures" of personal experience of initiation rituals, compelled to produce visual images where language fails.

Mason and Mashile will conduct a walkabout on Saturday April 20 at 3pm.

A panel discussion about initiation will be held on Wednesday April 24 at 4pm. The discussion will be led by Prof Anitra Nettleton (Head, History of Art Department, Wits), Prof R Thornton (Anthropology Department, Wits) and others. This event will be preceded by a poetry reading. Booking is essential as space is limited, but entrance is free for all events.

Opening: April 13 at 3pm
Closing: May 2

Art on Paper, 8 Main Road, Melville (next to Outer Limits bookshop)
Tel: (011) 726 2234
Hours: Tues - Sat 10am - 5pm

Mixed bag at the Little Louvre

The Little Louvre Gallery shows new work by Patrick Rorke, Nico van Rensburg, Diane McClean, Estelle Marais, Jan Cizek, Scott Harrison, Flip Hattingh, James Durno, Elnor Leach, Barbara Shaw, Wanda Van Den Hogen, Sharle Matthews, Collin Cole and Elaine Cowley.

Opening: April 13 from 10am to 1pm
Closing: May 18

The Little Louvre, 69 11th Street, Parkhurst
Tel: (011) 327 1384
Hours: Mon - Fri 9am - 4pm, Sat 9am - 1pm

Bag Factory artists-in-residence exhibition

'State of Being' is the title given to the exhibition by three current Bag Factory artists-in-residence - Sharlene Khan (SA), Edward Mbao Mumba (Zambia) and Nkoali Eausibius Nawa (SA).

Opening: April 10 at 6pm
Closing: April 17

Bag Factory, 10 Minnaar Street, Newtown
Tel/fax: (011) 834 9181
Hours: Mon - Fri 10am - 3pm, Sat 10am - 1pm

Lucas Bambo and Ferdie Hartzenberg at Absa Gallery

This double bill features a new collection of black and white linocuts by Lucas Bambo alongside Ferdie Hartzenberg's kinetic sculptures. Both artists are past finalists and merit winners in the Absa Atelier competition. Many of Bambo's works reflect his early childhood in KwaNdebele and will be sold unframed for the pocket-friendly price of R600 each. Hartzenberg will be showing work in bronze, metal, cement and sand that incorporate moving and interactive elements.

Opening: April 9 at 5.30pm
Closing: April 26

Absa Gallery, Absa Towers North, 161 Main Street, Johannesburg
Tel: (011) 350 4588
Hours: Mon - Fri 9.30am - 3.30pm

Trevor Coleman

Trevor Coleman

Trevor Coleman at the Alliance Française

Previously on exhibition at the Hyde Park Gallery, Trevor Coleman's brightly painted semi-abstractions of people and views in the Greek Isles move to the Alliance.

Closing: April 30

Alliance Française, 17 Lower Park Drive, Parkview
Tel: (011) 646 1169
Fax: (011) 646 4521

Jürgen Schadeberg

Jürgen Schadeberg
The cover of Black and White Fifties

Jürgen Schadeberg book launch at Exclusive Books

Two books by photographer Jürgen Schadeberg will be launched simultaneously at Exclusive Books, after being shown numerous times in the last year as photographic exhibitions. Soweto Today and The Black and White Fifties, both published by Protea, together represent half a century of work by Schadeburg, who made his name during the Drum era but has continued to document South African life on both sides of the racial divide ever since. The guest speaker will be John Perlman.

Wednesday April 10 at 5.30pm for 6pm

Exclusive Books, Hyde Park
RSVP: 011 325 4298 (Connie)

Artists-in-residence at MTN Art Institute

Ceramists Wonderboy Nxumalo and Petros Gumbi from the Ardmore Studio in KwaZulu-Natal are being hosted by the MTN Art Institute as artists-in-residence this year. You are welcome to visit the artists in their studios and watch and discuss their working methods, but please make an appointment first.

April 8 - 12

MTN, 3 Alice Lane, Sandton
Tel: 011 301 8124 (Eloise Knoetze)
Hours: 9am - 4pm daily

VACA exhibition at the Sandton Civic Gallery

The full title for this multi-part exhibition is 'Passages of Time, Celebrating the Past, Welcoming the Future', mounted by the Visual Art and Craft Academy's Vis+Ability project. 'Celebrating the Past' shows the work of previous VACA students, directors and teachers including Wessel van Huyssteen, Nhlanhla Xaba, Moses Seleko, Keith Dietrich, Obed Mbele, Usha Seejarim, Richman Buthelezi, Churchill Madikida, Tiny Malefane, Loren Kaplan, Chantel Collet and Ruth Sack. 'Welcoming the Future' shows work by current VACA matric students.

VACA is an NGO that grew out of a need expressed by students from Katlehong, who could not enter universities, technikons or colleges due to the lack of a matriculation certificate as a result of the ongoing education crisis. Since its inception more than 200 students have obtained their matric certificates with an average pass rate of 95% allowing them to pursue careers in the arts.

Opening: April 7 at 10.30am with guest speaker Shelley Barry and a performance by Gcina Mhlope
Closing: May 5

Sandton Civic Gallery, corner Rivonia Road and West Street, Sandton
Tel: 011 881 6431
Hours: Mon - Fri 9.30am - 4pm

Visual Art and Craft Academy: 011 726 1109 (Toni Meyer)

Moses Seleko and Ben Nsusha at Millennium II

Up next at Millennium II is an exhibition by Moses Seleko and Ben Nsusha, titled 'Diversity'.

Opening: Wednesday April 3 at 6pm
Closing: April 20

Millennium II, 19 Jellicoe Avenue, Rosebank
Tel: (011) 880 5270
Hours: Tues - Fri 11am - 6pm, Sat 12pm - 5pm

Karl Kugel

Karl Kugel
Récits des corps

Karl Kugel at MuseumAfrica

As part of the Journée de la Francophonie (Day of the French Speaking World) celebrations, photographer Karl Kugel exhibits images of fight dance scenes shot on the continent and the Indian Ocean region. Kugel initially came to South Africa in 2001 to conduct a workshop on exhibition design at Museum Africa. A hundred black and white photographs will be exhibited, the result of years of travelling and documenting fight dances. This exhibition, already displayed in Mozambique, will travel to France after South Africa.

Kugel states: "Récits des corps is a work about the connection between the islands, the men and the women of the greater Indian Ocean. It's also a research into the photographic 'medium' and the link between its informational function and fictional dimension. For this work, I have used a method close to visual anthropology, without denying the poetic dimension or the narrative of the photography. Introduced as a fable, photography can indeed come to life in a theatrical installation. That's what I call 'photographic visual setting'."

Opening: March 20 at 5.30pm

Creole and French-speaking poet Christian Jalma, a cappella singer Nathalie Natiembe and fight dancers will perform at the opening.

Walkabouts with the artist will take place on March 22 at 1pm and March 23 at 11am.

MuseumAfrica, 121 Bree St, Newtown
Tel: (011) 833 5624
Fax: (011) 833 5636
Hours: Tues - Sun 9am - 5pm


Lionel Smit

Lionel Smit

Lionel Smit, Liam Lynch, Zander Blom at Millennium Gallery

The Millennium Gallery present a trio of shows by Lionel Smit, Liam Lynch and Zander Blom.

Opening: Thursday 25 April at 7pm Closing: May 15

Millennium Gallery, 75 George Storrar Drive, Groenkloof
Tel: 012 460 8217
Fax: 012 346 5552
Cell: 083 263 5842
Hours: Tues - Fri 10am - 5pm, Sat 10am - 2pm


The invitation to 'Oerbaan'

'Oer Baan' at the Open Window

Haidee Nel, MJ Lourens and Rossouw van der Walt show new work. The opening features a video projection for one night only.

Opening: April 17 at 7pm
Closing: May 11

Open Window Art Academy, 10 Rigel Avenue, Erasmusrand
Tel: (012) 347 1740
Fax: (012) 347 1710
Hours: Mon - Fri 9am - 4pm, Sat 10am - 2pm



'Transmigrations' at Pretoria Art Museum

Artists' collective Dasart, headed by Ashley Johnson, initiated 'Transmigrations' as an exhibition that is concerned with story-telling "in the belief that the many levels within myth and enchantment are vital to our well-being. Western ways of seeing accept the culturally familiar and reject as superstitious that which is culturally 'divergent'." Thirteen South African artists, among them Rookeya Gardee, Nhlanhla Mbatha, Diane Victor and Wim Botha, are joined by one Canadian artist and one American artist, picked up on the show's journey from here to Los Angeles and Tijuana.

After Pretoria the exhibition will travel to the Oliewenhuis Art Museum, Bloemfontein (Sept - Nov 2002), the Ann Bryant Art Gallery, East London (Nov - Jan 2003), the Durban Art Gallery and the Tatham Art Gallery, Pietermaritzburg.

Further information on 'Transmigrations: Rituals and Items' as well as archival information on Dasart can be accessed at

Opening: April 6 at noon
Closing: July 21

Pretoria Art Museum, corner Schoeman and Wessels streets, Arcadia
Tel: (012) 344 1807/8
Fax: (012) 344 1809
Hours: Tues, Thur - Sat 10am - 5pm, Wed 10am - 8pm, Sun 12pm - 5pm

'Jabulisa 2000' at Pretoria Art Museum

Direct from the Johannesburg Art Gallery, this is a sprawling exhibition that covers every conceivable aspect of creative production in KwaZulu-Natal from contemporary art to crafts. While it cannot be faulted for being too selective, the exhibition would have benefited from more rigorous curatorial strategy and exhibition design.

Opening: April 2
Closing: May 5

Pretoria Art Museum, corner Schoeman and Wessels streets, Arcadia
Tel: (012) 344 1807/8
Fax: (012) 344 1809
Hours: Tues, Thur - Sat 10am - 5pm, Wed 10am - 8pm, Sun 12pm - 5pm