Archive: Issue No. 112, December 2006

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3.12.06 South African Artists in Istanbul

5.11.06 South African Artists in the Canary Islands Biennale
5.11.06 Candice Breitz in England
5.11.06 Mikhael Subotzky in Amsterdam


3.12.06 Nicholas Hales in New York
3.12.06 Kim Lieberman in New York
3.12.06 African Comics in Harlem

5.11.06 South African artists at the Sao Paulo Biennale
5.11.06 Berni Searle in Florida

7.07.06 'Body of Evidence' at the National Museum of African Art in the USA


5.05.06 'Off the Record' in Tokyo



South African Artists in Istanbul

For the first time in the biennale's history, a selection of artworks from the 51st Venice Biennale will travel to Istanbul's Museum of Modern Art for 'Venice-Istanbul'.Rosa Martinez, co-curator of the 51st Biennale, and also the chief curator of the Istanbul Museum for Modern Art has selected a number of works from the biennale to be shown in Turkey.

Coinciding with the celebrations of the 150th anniversary of diplomatic relations between Turkey and Italy and the subsequent declaration of Istanbul and Venice as sister cities, the exhibit will bring out the strong interaction between these two cities with rich historical pasts. Explaining that the exhibition reflects the erasure of boundaries and how art can be a vehicle to strengthen historical, institutional and educational ties between two cities, Martinez says, 'the Venice-Istanbul project shows how art can move from biennials towards museums and how it can gain new meanings through this transition.'

South Africans William Kentridge, Robin Rhode and Berni Searle are amongst the artists selected.

Opens: October 18
Closes: January 18

Canary Islands Biennale

Los Lavaderos building in Tenerife where Ruth Sacks will be doing a site-specific installation

South African artists in the Canary Islands Biennale

The Canary Islands vice-ministry of culture has announced the '1st Architecture, Art and Landscape Biennial of the Canaries', a show of 70 artists' interventions spread across the seven-island archipelago off the coast of North Africa.

This Biennial is conceived as an event that intentionally reflects the specificities of this complex island territory, spread over the whole of the geography of the Canaries, occupying well-known centres and venues, as well as lesser known unconventional spaces in an event that highlights the discussion between the urban and natural, and the islands' own economic development and history in relation particularly to its adjacent African continent.

The South Africans involved are Ruth Sacks, Johan Thom and Kendell Geers.

Opens: November 27
Closes: February 10

Candice Breitz

Candice Breitz
Working Class Hero (A Portrait of John Lennon) 2006
video still

Candice Breitz in England

During a recent residency at BALTIC gallery, Candice Breitz invited a diverse community of dedicated John Lennon fans to pay tribute to their hero in a recording studio in Newcastle-upon-Tyne. Each fan was given the opportunity to re-perform Lennon's first solo album Plastic Ono Band (1970), from beginning to end.

The resulting video, lasting 39 minutes and 55 seconds (to match the length of the original album), will be displayed on 25 plasma screens that are staggered around BALTIC's seven storey public stairway. Each plasma screen is dedicated to one fan's idiosyncratic re-performance of the howling and cathartic songs on Plastic Ono Band, an album that explores the traumas of Lennon's childhood and which was made while Lennon and Yoko Ono were undergoing intense Primal Therapy with Dr. Arthur Janov.

Working Class Hero (A Portrait of John Lennon) is the fourth in a series of portraits of musical icons by Breitz (preceded by portraits of Bob Marley, Michael Jackson and Madonna). Collectively, the portraits are an ongoing survey of the culture of the fan and the delicate mechanisms of projection, identification and consumption that characterise the relationship between an icon and his/her community of fans.

Opens: October 10
Closes: January 28

Mikhael Subotzky

Mikhael Subotzky
Hermanus (parking garage), Cape Town, CBD 2005
archival pigment ink on cotton rag paper
46.5 x 126cm

Mikhael Subotzky in Amsterdam

Mikhael Subotzky is participating in the World Press Photo's prestigious Joop Swart Masterclass this November, for which he was selected earlier this year. This year's theme is 'Risk' with the participating young photographers each creating a photo story for the class and an exhibition at the Foam_Photography Museum inAmsterdam. Subotzsky's photo essay explores the people of Beaufort West.

Opens: November 10
Closes: January 7 Foam_Photography Museum
Keizersgracht 609, Amsterdam
Tel: +31 (0)20 551 6500
Hours: Mon - Wed 10am - 5pm , Thu - Fri 10am - 9pm


Nicholas Hales

Nicholas Hales
Release 2005
oil and wax on wood
35.5 cm x 35.5 cm

Nicholas Hales in New York

Nicholas Hales will be showing on 'December 2006', a show featuring 29 international artists working in various media at the Alpen Gallery in New York. Hales' paintings on the show are part of his Portals series which was shown in its entirety in Cape Town last year.

The work was inspired by the artist's time spent in Mannenberg, and the hurricane that hit the suburb shortly thereafter. The works deal with violence, illness and an internal investigation of self in relationship to contemporary urban South Africa.

Opens: December 17
Closes: January 18

Kim Lieberman

Kim Lieberman
Human Currents (detail) 2006
oil paint on white puzzle
30 x 90cm

Kim Lieberman in New York

Kim Lieberman shows 'Human Currents' at the Esso gallery in New York. In this, her latest work, Lieberman is again concerned with the conceptual connectedness presupposed by the grid, albeit the blank postage stamp sheet, or the complete white puzzle. The sense of connectedness is reinforced by an intricate line that literally forms a current that links all the important elements in the picture plane together in a completed whole. When talking about the origin of this arabesque line, Lieberman references motifs she first encountered in kitchen and bathroom tiles in condemned downtown Johannesburg buildings, due for implosion.

Opens: November 25
Closes: December 23

African Comics


African Comics in Harlem

In partnership with Africa e Mediterraneo, a non-profit organisation based in Bologna, Italy, The Studio Museum in Harlem hosts 'Africa Comics', the first-ever exhibition in the United States dedicated exclusively to comic art from across the continent. A new generation of African artists is expressing itself through a medium most Americans associate with superheroes and funny pages. Using comics, this talented group depicts the rage, desperation, hope and humour of daily life in Africa. The work, which addresses issues as wide-ranging as corruption, human rights, immigration and the plight of women, provides an unprecedented glimpse into modern Africa.

'Africa Comics' includes 32 artists or 2-person artists' teams from all over the continent, including Angola, Benin, Central African Republic, Cameroon, Democratic Republic of Congo, Equatorial Guinea, Eritrea, Gabon, Ivory Coast, Kenya, Madagascar, Mali, Mozambique, Nigeria, Republic of Congo, Rwanda, Senegal, South Africa, Tanzania and Togo.

Opens: November 15
Closes: March 18

Mustafa Maluka

Mustafa Maluka
The Great Quiet, 2005 oil on canvas
180 x 300cm

South African artists at the Sao Paulo Biennale

The 27th Bienal de Sao Paulo this year does away with so-called national representations, showing instead only individual projects. The exhibition, entitled 'How We Live Together' proposes a reflection on how shared and common spaces are constructed, questioning controversial issues such as difference, coexistence, rhythms of production and collaborative practices in an attempt to reach an ethical sense of living-together. Amongst the extensive list of artists are South Africans Jane Alexander, Guy Tillim, Mustafa Maluka and Pieter Hugo.

Opens: October 7
Closes: December 17

Berni Searle

Berni Searle
WAITING #3 2003
lithographs on BFK Rives watercolour paper

Berni Searle in Florida

Berni Searle's exhibition 'Approach' shows at the University of South Florida's Contemporary Art Centre this month. 'Approach' includes seminal video and print pieces such as her Colour Me and Waiting series.

As part of this exhibition, Searle will also work with the Graphicstudio, the distinguished artist workshop at the University of South Florida, to create a suite of prints.

Opens: October 27
Closes: December 16

'Body of Evidence' at the National Museum of African Art in the USA

'Body of Evidence' is a new show at the Smithsonian Institute's Museum of African Art. The long running show is an exhibition of works by contemporary African artists from the museum's collection who deal with ideas of 'The Body' with varying levels of explicitness.

The artists use the human body, and its absence, as a site for issues of race, identity, gender and geography - all issues that are often integral to artists from this continent. South African artists Kay Hassan, Gavin Jantjes, Rudzani Nemasetoni, Georgie Papageorge, Johannes Phokela, Berni Searle, Sue Williamson and Jeremy Wafer are included.

Opens: June 14
Closes: April 6, 2007


Off the Record

An X-cube locker

'Off the Record' - Shibuya and other stations, Tokyo

Timed to coincide with the opening of 'Africa Remix' at the Mori, is a project much lighter in weight and more ephemeral in concept: 'Off the Record', devised by Belgian artist Eric van Hove, now based in Tokyo, will hi-jack X-Cube storage lockers found in subway stations in the city.

These lockers are opened not by a key but by utilising a cell phone number designated by the storer. Invited artists will make an artwork to fit into one of these lockers, which measures 30 x 30 x 60 cm. An SMS to a friend inviting him/her to come and view the artwork will set the process in motion. The invitee will then invite someone else in turn, setting the new cell phone number as the new code. 'Think of Chinese whispers', says Van Hove.

Participating artists include Lara Baladi (Egypt), Federico Herrero (Costa Rica), John di Stefano (New Zealand) and Sue Williamson (South Africa).

Will the artwork be stolen by a viewer? Will the next invited viewer take the trouble to pay a visit? Will an earthquake destroy Tokyo and all the artworks? The agenda is open.

More information?

May 2006 - until such time as the project ends itself.