BY BILLY SUTER
SOME interesting things are happening on the Durban and Pietermaritzburg art scenes, including the opening, at 6pm on Tuesday, May 21, of an exhibition by Banele Khoza, titled Seeking Love. This will be at the Durban Art Gallery in the City Hall building.
Also of note is an exhibition by various local artists, running until June 2 at the KZNSA Gallery in Bulwer Park, Glenwood, titled Ikhono Lasenatali.
Note, too, that Pietermaritzburg’s Blue Caterpillar Art Gallery is hosting an exhibition by Umhlanga-based artist Angelika Anastasis, who works in ceramics and oils.
There will be a free walkabout with artist Banele Khoza from 10am to noon on Wednesday, May 22, at which this 2017 Gerard Sekoto award-winner will discuss his work.
Seeking Love, running until June 21 at the Durban Art Gallery, is a collection of work that reflects the complex nature of love, how important it is to acknowledge the heart’s desires and to also learn self-love – which Khoza wants people to walk away from the exhibition thinking about.
“This exhibition is an open love letter to whoever is watching or reading my work – also to God/All/The universe. I am confessing that I am ready, and I am letting go of the search,” explains the artist.
Khoza is a Swazi-born and South African-based visual artist. He first enrolled at the London International School of Fashion in Pretoria, but soon realised his passion was in the Fine Arts realm.
He holds a B Tech in Fine Arts from Tshwane University of Technology, Pretoria. In 2017, he won the prestigious Gerard Sekoto Award and with it a three-month residency at the Cité Internationale des Arts in Paris.
The Durban Art Gallery is open seven days a week – from 8.30am to 4pm Mondays to Saturdays, and from 11am to 3.45pm on Sundays and public holidays. Entry is free and all are welcome. For more info, phone (031) 311 2264 / 9.
The current KZNSA Gallery exhibition, Ikhono Lasenatali is a collection of commissions by acclaimed South African visual activist, Zanele Muholi, to 25 young KwaZulu-Natal visual artists to reinterpret Muholi’s self-portraits from the Somnyama Ngonyama project in each young artist’s medium and technique.
The exhibition at the KZNSA, curated by Bajabulile Dhlamini and Thobeka Bhengu, celebrates KwaZulu-Natal’s talent and provides a platform for the young artists to showcase their skills and craft.
Ikhono Lasenatali also forms part of a 25 Years of Democracy commemoration, with the interpretations of Somnyama Ngonyama by mostly ‘born-free’ artists speaking to social ills and touching on Muholi’s themes of gender, race, politics, sexuality, collaboration, and collectivism.
Participating artists are: Mpilo Makhanya, Bongani Luthuli, Lindokuhle Khumalo, Mlamuli Mkhwanazi, Mthobisi Maphumulo, Mduduzi Dzanibe, Londiwe Mtshali, Andile Maphumulo, Sthenjwa Luthuli, Lungisani Ndlovu, Nomusa Mtshali, Morgan Mohape, Sphephelo Mnguni, Ncumisa Mcitwa, Major Ndlovu, Mondli Mbhele, Zwelinjani Radebe, Shabo Bhengu, Mhlonishwa Chiliza, Khulekani Mkhize, Lindani Nyandeni, Nhlakanipho Gcwabe, Thembi Mtshali, Thalente Khomo, Wonder Mbambo and Nkosikhona Majola.
There are numerous educational activities planned throughout the exhibition, including public and schools walkabouts. These will facilitate in-depth discussions on national, continental and international issues relevant to the artworks selected.
Discussions will also provide a vibrant overview of South African contemporary art and art history, encouraging participants to engage in critical thinking and analysis through visual interactions and experience.
For more information on the exhibition, the education programme or to book a walkabout for a school, contact Thobeka Bhengu at 073 968 0825 or the KZNSA Education Officer, Summaya Menezes, at 083 307 8619.
Jenni Cramer, the curator of Pietermaritzburg’s Blue Caterpillar Art Gallery, describes as “fresh and exciting” the latest exhibition by Angelika Anastasis, which opened this week and runs until the end of August.
Anastasis is an artist who has always loved colour which she uses with ease in her canvases. This contrasts with the refreshing starkness of her ceramic pieces.
“This artist has a wonderful way of expressing herself through confident use of colour and also bold outlines used on the canvas. All of her pieces on display include the image of a woman, but with many different interpretations, and also individual ‘stories’ which are partnered with each painting,” explains Cramer.
Anastasis won the Regional award for Ceramics South Africa 2017. She is both a ceramic and a contemporary oil artist.
She has exhibited both in Johannesburg and Durban, in joint painting exhibitions with Jody Waterson and with Nicole Pletts, as well as participating in a number of group exhibitions. She has sold work both locally and internationally.
Anastasis worked for many years as a counsellor, using her psychology background and UK training as a hypnotherapist and psychic within the ‘mind-body’ space. Within this space she learned of the significance of symbols, seeing them as hints of intuition to take direction.
Angelika uses symbols in particular birds as a reference to one’s intuition and inner knowing. The heart also features in many of her paintings, and she sees the heart as allowing one to overcome fear, our biggest stumbling block.
She is inspired by women, focusing on their strengths, vulnerabilities and archetypes. A cacophony of colour is diametrically opposed to the formal shapes Angelika experienced in London. The triangular shapes of Proteas and softer shapes of roses also draw her in.
Working primarily with oil colours and with a loose natural style, she is currently exploring the world of mixed media by bringing in more graphic shapes.
The Blue Caterpillar Art Gallery is at Butterflies for Africa, 37 Willowton Road, Pietermaritzburg, The number to call for more information is (033) 387 1356.