Archive: Issue No. 61, September 2002

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LISTINGS/KZN

DURBAN
18.09.02 Fred Archibong's and Mathiba Molefe at the BAT Centre
18.09.02 Gwen van Embden, Janet Solomon, Milijana Babic and Ralph Bronzin at the NSA Gallery
01.09.02 African Art Centre new shows
01.09.02 'City' at the DAG
01.09.02 Red Eye @rt at the DAG
19.08.02 'Outpost ll' - a show of contemporary KZN art at the NSA
19.08.02 'Clay and Fiber' - annual ceramic exhibition at the NSA

PIETERMARITZBERG
01.09.02 Valerie Leigh at the Tatham
01.09.02 'Abelumbi: Untold Tales of Magic' at Tatham
DURBAN



Fred Archibong's paintings - 'Art As A Bedrock For Future Development' and Mathiba Molefe's exhibition of ceramics 'Introspection Life's Geology' at the BAT Centre

Two new shows opened at the BAT Centre this week. In the Menzi Mchunu Gallery Nigerian painter Fred Archibong shows his 'Art As a Bedrock for Future Development'. Nationally and internationally recognised, Archibong has, over the last 30 years, contributed invaluably to the Nigerian art scene both at home and across Europe and America.

Archibong's works works engage the various peoples of his native Nigeria. For instance Fulani Motifs show the Fulani people, natives of Northern Nigeria whilst the calabash carvers of the Oyo state in South Western Nigeria also appear in his works.

Showing in the Democratic Gallery is Mathiba Molefe's exhibition of ceramics 'Introspection Life's Geology'. Born in 1974 in Harrismith, Molefe began enjoying art while she was still in Standard Three but it was not until she was studying at Vaal Triangle Technikon that she developed a passion for design and ceramics. Enrolling for a full time ceramics course in 1996, under the guidance of Rita Tasker, Rion Munting and Eunice Botes, she soon developed an individual style. After completing her Ceramic Design Diploma in 1998 she worked from home for three years perfecting her skills and supplementing her income by selling products at the Basotho Cultural Village.

Offered an opportunity to work as an artist in residency at the Bat Centre Studios she met and became ceramicists Clive Sithole and Simphiwe Belle. Under their influence Molefe's approach to pot making changed. Previously focusing on wheel throwing she now turned to coiling, burnishing and smoke firing.

She says that her work "is heavily influenced by aspects of African cultures and Pueblo pottery�My greatest teacher has been my great grandmother. During the time that I spend with her she continues to teach me new techniques. It is encouraging to know that I am learning the very technique that her mother taught her, as this knowledge will be passed on to the next generation".

Closing: September 30

BAT Centre, 45 Maritime Place, Small Craft Harbour
Tel: (031) 332 0451
Fax: (031) 332 2213
Email: info@batcentre.co.za
Website: www.batcentre.co.za
Hours: Mon - Fri 9am - 5pm, Sat - Sun 9am - 4.30pm


Gwen van Embden

Gwen van Embden
Untitled detail, 2001

Janet Solomon

Janet Solomon
John (detail)
Oil on canvas

Milijana Babic

Milijana Babic
Invitation image, 2002
Drawing


'Hand Work' by Gwen van Embden, 'In Search of Lost Time' by Janet Solomon, 'nonsense' an installation by Milijana Babic and a photographic exhibition by Ralph Bronzin at the NSA Gallery

Four new exhibitions opened this week at the NSA Gallery. Primary among them is by Gwen van Embden's 'Hand Work' an exhibition built around the domestic terrain of her own experience.

Works in this exhibition are a collection of found objects, manufactured objects, photographs, printed ceramics, embroideries and book pages: objects that are the fragments she has used to construct a picture book that forms a narrative of her family history. Interrogating the domestic and family past and the present as it unfolds itself, the 'debris' of these processes are collected and carefully reconstructed and displayed.

Van Embden becomes 'keeper' of this domestic archive, investigating museum practices of collection and display - subverting these so that her 'domestic' position becomes that of a curator - the home and memoirs ground of and for artistic investigation and interrogation.

There will be a walkabout on the exhibition on Wednesday, September 18 at 12h30 and a panel discussion of the implications of work on Thursday, September 19 at 18h00 with Virginia MacKenny, Llianne Loots and Nise Malange. All are welcome and entry is free entry, but booking is essential.

In the Mezzanine Gallery Janet Solomon presents 'In Search of Lost Time'. Produced over the last five years the, mostly large-scale, oil paintings engage art history and its 'masterpieces'. Utilising portraits of people she knows the works exhibit traditional technical mastery while commenting on contemporary existential questions and interpretations of beauty. The exhibition is dedicated to a lost friend, Serge Menager.

In the media gallery there will be a special launch of the Young Artists' Project (YAP). Conceived and guided by gallery curator Storm van Rensberg the project allows four young artists annually the opportunity to a first solo-project with professional assistance. The project will culminate in the publication of a small-format catalogue and a public seminar and conference. Focusing on work that is installation and new-media based and not commercially driven, YAP aims to create a space for experimentation and contemporary work in the city, and through transparent processes to become informative and educative.

Receiving funding from Pro-Helvetia (the Arts Council of Switzerland) and the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC) the project will be kicked off by Milijana Babic with her installation 'nonsense'. Babic, a Croatian by birth, has been living, working and studying in Durban for the past five years. Currently completing her B. Tech degree at the Durban Institute of Technology, Babic has participated in various public projects in the past year, notably during the recent Durban Designers' Emporium events at the BAT Centre with a knock-out installation titled Not-for-Sale.

Utilising a pared-down aesthetic and recurring symbols of childhood and home, Babic continues to search in her work for an elusive place of refuge for a little girl searching for her identity. In her Artist's Statement she says that, "in my work, the search for perfection is also a search for the child that I used to know. The idea of the imaginative as real is seen as a base for a conceptual home, as expressed through the use of a childhood vocabulary. The story of 'Alice in Wonderland' offers some of the many possible answers to questions of 'who' and 'where'. It was Alice's statement, 'I can't help it, I am growing' that made me strongly want to make it 'real'" .

Finally on the Arts Caf� Wall is a photographic exhibition by Ralph Bronzin. Bronzin recently returned home from a few months of travelling alone around Western Europe. He states that "travelling alone allowed me to be selfish; being away from my support system, and the niche that living in the same city most of one's life can create, encouraged me to explore and redefine the boundaries that enclose and explain my world."

The exhibition is a selection of images seen on his travels and it reveals a sharp eye for detail and the unexpected. A mixture of still life, unrehearsed portrait, and landscape the show successfully engages the viewer with its personal vision.

Closing: October 6

NSA Gallery, 166 Bulwer Road, Glenwood
Tel: 031 202 3686
Fax: 031 202 3744
Email: iartnsa@mweb.co.za
Website: www.nsagallery.co.za
Hours: Tues - Fri 10am - 5pm, Sat 10am - 4pm, Sun 11am - 3pm


Sibisiso Duma

Sibisiso Duma
'Wathinta abafazi, wathinta imbokodo (you touch the women, you touch the strength of stones)
Painting


African Art Centre new shows

A trio of new exhibitions opens this week at the African Art Centre. Topping the bill Sibusiso Duma opens with a show of paintings. Strongly influenced by Trevor Makoba, Duma nevertheless is becoming known for his own particular eye on African life.

Also on the agenda is a show of carved and painted wood sculptures by Timothy Mlambo, Themba Khumalo, Widus Mtshali and Sibusiso Gumede. Coming from a long tradition of worked and burnt woodcarving these pieces are idiosyncratic and make great purchases.

Also working in what is a growing field are telewire basket makers Zodwa Maphumulo, Ntombifuthi Maphumulo, Ntombifuthi Magwaza, Rosalina Khanyile, Eliott Mkhize, Robert Shange, Janet Ngubane and Simon Mavundla. Colourful and inventive these African 'mandalas' are not just decorative, many tell stories.


Lorenzetti

A photo by Lorenzetti
from 'City' an exhibition about daily life in Chicago


'City' at the DAG

Chicago is Durban's twin city so, as part of the 'Celebrate Durban Festival' being held by the City of Durban, the Durban Art Gallery will be showing 'City', an exhibition of photographs from Chicago.

Chicago, located in the heart of America's great Midwest, is a major metropolis on the shores of the Great Lakes. On a quest to create a lasting record of life in Chicago, more than 200 photographers spent 366 days canvassing the city and chronicling its people, places and personalities. The project's eclectic mix of styles and approaches - from photojournalism to fine art photography - has blended into a rich historic document of life in Chicago today.

Inspired by the Chicago 'City' project a workshop on documenting life in Durban will be held with the Imvunge Photographers (originally an initiative of the Friends of the Durban Art Gallery under the auspices of Moses Khubisa) during the run of the show. Results of this workshop will be shown at a later date.

Opening: September 21
Closing: October 5

Durban Art Gallery, 2nd floor, City Hall, Smith Street
Tel: 031 311 2262
Fax: 031 311 2273
Website: www.durban.gov.za/museums/artgallery
Hours: Mon - Sat 8.30am - 4pm, Sun 11am - 4pm


Peter Ford & Chris Mkhanya

Funny boards
Peter Ford and Chris Mkhanya

Peet Pienaar & Jaco Bouwer

Jaco Bouwer in the performance
"Untitled" by Peet Pienaar and Jaco Bouwer created for the
Male Order exhibition

The video of this performance will be shown at Red Eye


Red Eye @rt at DAG

Yes, its Red Eye time again - diarise Friday September 6 for another staging of the new, revamped quarterly production of this contemporary practice event. Given coherence with a theme this month's Red Eye will focus on 'The Theatre of the Body' with a special emphasis on various modes of performance art. Included will be the video screening of two performances that formed part of the 'Male Order' exhibition recently showcased in Grahamstown. These include an untitled piece by Peet Pienaar and Jaco Bouwer as well as 'Avocado' by Greig Coetzee. Another video feature is 'Ms.Fits'- a feminist piece produced in Durban by UND student filmmakers as one of the entries for M-Net's 'Edit' Film Competition.

Two new performance pieces will be presented by Durban Institute of Technology (previously Technikon Natal) Fine Arts students Nicolette Van der Walt and Vaughn Sadie and Flatfoot Dance Company will showcase 'Abakhwetha' ('The Initiates'), a dance piece dealing with the controversial Xhosa initiation/circumcision ceremony.

Visual art on show will include two installations: one an untitled collaboration by Deanne Donaldson and Dean Jensen as well as 'Codex', an installation by Michael Tietz which explores issues of masculinity and identity.

Staying with the subject of the body, if you've ever wanted to try another one on for size you'll have the chance to do so at Red Eye. So if you fancy being a 'Pin-Up' for 5 minutes and having the picture to prove it, then make your way along to 'Brigitta's Funny Boards' to see what it's all about.

Last but not least, music maestros for the evening are Dj's Ragga (USA) and Shela (S.A) who will be spinning a mix of Retro 80's Rap/Hip-hop, Ragga and Dancehall.

Opens: September 6 at 6:00pm

Durban Art Gallery, 2nd floor, City Hall, Smith Street
Tel: 031 311 2262
Fax: 031 311 2273
Website: www.durban.gov.za/museums/artgallery
Hours: Mon - Sat 8.30am - 4pm, Sun 11am - 4pm


Thando Mama

Thando Mama
Video still on monitor


'Outpost ll' - a show of contemporary KZN art at the NSA

The NSA is hosting a follow-up to 'Outpost',- a travelling show that took contemporary work from KwaZulu Natal to Pretoria two years ago. 'Outpost II', the sequel, will also be travelling later in the year, this time to Stellenbosch. Both shows have been curated in response to the historically held idea that KZN is the last bastion of British colonialism in a far-flung and remote part of Africa and as a consequence work produced here will be conservative and reactionary. 'Outpost II', however, rather than being a beleaguered camp under siege in the badlands, is a place that marks necessary forays into the terrain of uncertainty. Questions rather than assertions might indicate such tentative sorties into the unknown and the works on this exhibition engage with erosion of certitude, lack of identifiability, ambiguity, intertextuality and a dissolution of the expected boundaries between public and private.

In a world subsumed by large monopolies and a globalisation that purports to embrace difference, but rarely does, KZN might represent the smaller, idiosyncratic voice of the individual, which is often lost. This exhibition engages geographies of identity within the South African context. It embraces the personal whilst at the same time acknowledging the broader politics of place.

Curated by Virginia MacKenny and Storm van Rensburg it includes established and newer names. Included artists are Andries Botha, Carol-Anne Gainer, Clive Hardwick, Langa Magwa, Thando Mama, Isabella Quattrocchi, Greg Streak and Ingrid Winterbach.

The NSA exhibition is a selected preview of the larger show which will travel to Stellenbosch.

See REVIEWS

NSA
Opening: August 21
Closing: September 7

NSA Gallery, 166 Bulwer Road, Glenwood
Tel: 031 202 3686
Fax: 031 202 3744
Email: iartnsa@mweb.co.za
Website: www.nsagallery.co.za
Hours: Tues - Fri 10am - 5pm, Sat 10am - 4pm, Sun 11am - 3pm

University of Stellenbosch Gallery
Opening: October 10
Closing: November 6

US Art Gallery, corner Dorp and Bird Streets, Stellenbosch
Tel: (021) 808 3524
Email: usmuseum@maties.sun.ac.za
Hours: Mon - Fri 9am - 5pm, Sat 9am - 1pm


Henny Meier

Henny Meier
Teapot


'Clay and Fiber' - the annual ceramic exhibition by the Association of Potters Southern Africa (APSA), KZN at the NSA

The KwaZulu Natal region of APSA is holding their annual ceramic exhibition at the NSA Gallery. A regular showcase for the leading ceramic artists in the province this year guest artist Henny Meier was invited to showcase his famous colourful teapots, which have become collectors' items.

An important component to the exhibition is the creation of a platform for first-time exhibitors, made possible through a yearlong training programme sponsored by Old Mutual.

In addition, alongside the ceramics, textile works will be exhibited by Jeannette Gilks, Annette McMaster, Sally Scott and Jutta Faulds.

Opening: Wednesday 28 August 28 at 6:00pm
Closing: September 15

NSA Gallery, 166 Bulwer Road, Glenwood
Tel: 031 202 3686
Fax: 031 202 3744
Email: iartnsa@mweb.co.za
Website: www.nsagallery.co.za
Hours: Tues - Fri 10am - 5pm, Sat 10am - 4pm, Sun 11am - 3pm

PIETERMARITZBURG



Valerie Leigh at the Tatham

A retrospective selected from different periods of the artist�s life since the 60s this exhibition presents a broad cross-section of work from this familiar figure in KZN. Probably known more for her work in supporting others� artistic endeavours through her art museum curatorship this exhibition proves a fascinating insight into her own production.

Trained initially at the University of Natal Fine Art Department under Jack and Jane Heath, Leigh then continued her studies at the Museum of Fine Art in Montreal under Arthur Lismer. This she followed up with time in Paris at the Ecole des Beaux Arts and study with André Lhote at his atelier. As an artist Leigh�s connection to other important artists of the province such as Derek Leigh, her brother, and the Everard Read family provides a rich link to an important period of art production in KZN.

Tatham Art Gallery, corner Longmarket Street and Commercial Road
Tel: (033) 342 1804/01
Hours: Tues - Sun 10am - 6pm




'Abelumbi: Untold Tales of Magic' at the Tatham

After travelling around the country Abelumbi: Untold Tales of Magic is back in KZN at the Tatham. Months in the preparation 'Untold Tales of Magic: Abelumbi' is a fascinating survey of different cultural approaches to the idea of magic. The term 'magic' is utilised here to embrace the unexplained and so ranges across organised religion, local folktales, mythologies, alchemy, sorcery and enchantment. Concerned with both good and evil the exhibition covers Western, Eastern and African subjects and features the work of 68 artists from KwaZulu-Natal.

Pieces to look out for are MV Naidoo's oil painting Kali and the Kutti - Shaitaan depicting the 1935 exorcism of an evil spirit that was eventually defeated by the combined forces of Zulu sangoma, Muslim priests and Hindu spiritualists, depictions by Zamokwake Gumede, Juluis Mfethe, George Msimang and Siphiwe Zulu of the Night Rider the Zulu legend of a dark, undead entity who rides a baboon 'familiar' facing backwards so as not to be recognised by his enemies and Cross of Evil a beaded sculpture by Thafa Dlamini and Ceaser Mkhize.

Curated by Jill Addelson of the Durban Art Gallery the exhibition is seen as making a real contribution to indigenous knowledge systems and Michigan State University, in conjunction with Professor Seleti of the Campbell Collections, is funding ongoing research into the artists contributing to the show.

Closes: September 15

Tatham Art Gallery, corner Longmarket Street and Commercial Road
Tel: (033) 342 1804/01
Hours: Tues - Sun 10am - 6pm

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