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THE DEFINITIVE AFRICAN GRAFFITI & STREET ART WEBSITE.

This blog features news, pictures and event info to keep you updated with what is happening in the world of South African graffiti and street art.

EVENT \\ Exhibition: Compendium by Lionel Smit

The new Lionel Smit exhibition, Compendium, opened today and is now viewable online HERE.

Smit’s work is expressive and engaging, and is committed to a (de)construction of the portrait and, by extension, of identity.

Compendium offers collectors the opportunity to experience his work in a range of mediums varying from sculpture, new works on paper and oil on canvas.

>> MORE INFO

EVENT \\ Exhibition: Faith47 - Fragments of a Burnt History

The long awaited Faith47 solo exhibition opens this Thursday (8 November) at David Krut Projects, 140 Jan Smuts Avenue, Parkwood, Johannesburg.

Faith47’s “Fragments of a Burnt History” is comprised of an installation of found objects and artwork created in the artist’s studio, as well as a new series of monotypes produced in collaboration with the David Krut Print Workshop. Faith47, based in Cape Town, is a recognised street artist whose work can be found in cities all over the world. She has an established international gallery career, with exhibitions in Europe, America and Australia, but Fragments of a Burnt History is her first solo exhibition in South Africa, indicating a culture of cross-over from street to studio that is already well underway abroad.

The body of work presented in this exhibition is, appropriately, drawn from the artist’s experience of her own country, particularly the city of Johannesburg. Although the work is not a direct interpretation of the city, her experience is of Johannesburg as a representative African city, the streets full of the energy of transformation and endless possibility, but also the evidence of the harsh realities of day to day life. The textures of the streets are incorporated into her studio work, which becomes a combination of her signature graphic style and marks left behind by people who were in those locations before her. The installation of work communicates the emotion that Faith47 experiences on the streets, which tell her ‘a real, hard and beautifully sad story.’ The nostalgic architecture of the city is present in the work, and the sense that the ‘history of the city is etched deep into its streets’ – the works are fragments of this history, containing signs of the dynamic transition that has been, at times, reeling and painful, but has also been honest, allowing itself to be offered up for comment and consumption. The voices of the people that occupy this symbolic South African city, incorporated into Faith47’s own voice, allow her work to function as a penetrative look into the psyche of the spaces that we communally inherit.

Check out the teaser video:

FRAGMENTS OF A BURNT HISTORY - TEASER _ 2012 from FAITH47 on Vimeo.

>> MORE INFO

EVENT \\ Live Exhibition: GATHER (Augustine Kofie & Paul Senyol)

GATHER

A two-man ‘live art’ show by Augustine Kofie (USA) and Paul Senyol (RSA)

12 - 27 October 2012
The Lovell Gallery
139 Albert Road, Woodstock, Cape Town

PRESS RELEASE

This October The Lovell Gallery in association with Salon91 Contemporary Art Collection presents GATHER an exhibition by visual artists Augustine Kofie and Paul Senyol, whose works grace the streets and galleries of LA and Cape Town, respectively. GATHER will include works by the individual artists in their signature styles, collaborative works by Kofie and Senyol, as well as a true pièce de résistance, a historic racing Porsche 911, which will be transformed into an object of art inside the gallery from the 16th to the 19th Oct as part of this exhibition. This Art Porsche will then race in the endurance challenges of the International Springbok Series in Johannesburg, Cape Town and Port Elizabeth starting in November this year.

Augustine Kofie (born 1973) is a self-taught artist living and working in Los Angeles. He has exhibited extensively worldwide with seminal shows in New York, California, Japan, The Netherlands, Germany and Switzerland. The artist has been featured in Juxtapoz, The Huffington Post, LA Weekly, Project Room and Studio Voice. Kofie is internationally renowned for his awe-inspiring technical skills, employed to create his unique abstract compositions, characterized by simple geometric shapes, exact lines and smooth colour – complex yet elegant and in a league of their own. He has just completed shows in London and Turin Italy, and is in Cape Town for three weeks only on a residency with The Lovell Gallery.

Paul Senyol (born 1980) has been drawing and painting since his early high school years, however never pursuing any form of artistic training. Graffiti and street artists such as Marc Gonzales, Ed Templeton, and Barry McGee have all been major influences in his work, and in later years, the artistic genius of Jean-Michel Basquiat, Andy Warhol, and Cy Twombly. The absence of formal training has given the artist the freedom to break away from traditional notions of painting, to explore a variety of genres and styles, and to meld mediums, allowing him a creative freedom that flows so evidently through his works. Senyol’s art lingers gracefully and intentionally between beauty and honesty and brings a surreal, yet abstract world into being. Geometry, line, shape, composition, typography, abstraction and colour form the key elements in his work. Senyol has exhibited extensively throughout South Africa and has shown in a number of exhibitions in Europe. He currently works from a studio in Woodstock, Cape Town, and is represented by Salon91 Contemporary Art Collection.

Kofie and Senyol have both succeeded in developing their own unique abstract- and street- inspired artistic identities without any formal training. Process, balance, geometry, layering and typography are common elements, which link these artists’ works together. The pairing of Kofie and Senyol’s practice in GATHER results in a richly diverse visual dialogue and outcome, coexisting beautifully and harmoniously within the gallery space. GATHER further invites the viewer to be witness to the art-making process of two original contemporary street- and fine-artists in their own right. A world-class exhibition not to be missed!


Gallery hours: Tue – Fri 10am - 6pm; Sat 10am – 2pm (Closed on Mondays)

Contact:

Brendon van Kraayenburg (Gallery Manager):
084 627 2951 / 021-447-5918

info@lovellgallery.co.za

or Tamzin Lovell Miller (Gallery Owner):
079 176 4292 / 021 447 5918

tamzin@lovellgallery.co.za

The conclusion of the exhibition will be celebrated on the 25th of October at 6.30pm where one can view the finished works…

>> www.lovellgallery.co.za

EVENT \\ Exhibition: Motel7 - Daydreamers

Motel7 - Daydreamers

16 October 2012 - 10 November 2012

After her initial solo exhibition, Tears and Castles, at 34 Long Fine Art in 2009, Motel7 left South Africa to work in Europe and America. Having returned to South Africa she has reclaimed her position on the streets and in the gallery environment.

Mors ultima ratio’ 2012
60X80cm
acrylic on canvas

After working in traditional mediums from an early age, Motel7 has moved through the ranks of graffiti to street art and like many international artists, such as Banksy, Mr. Brainwash, Miss Van, Blek le Rat, D*Face and Nick Walker, she has secured her position as an acclaimed urban contemporary artist. Since then her work has been featured in numerous international exhibitions, including the Basel Art Fairs, as well as galleries in Amsterdam and Los Angeles. Motel7 continues to hone her skills in urban spaces whenever and wherever the opportunity presents itself.

Increasingly street artists occupy both urban and fine art environments. In cities like Cape Town, where street art is still illegal, artworks seldom remain on the walls for long enough to be fully appreciated before being cleaned off or defaced. Ironically, while the value of works in urban spaces is often overlooked, within the gallery environment these same works are approached with a more appreciative eye.

Reincarnation’ 2012
100X140cm
acrylic on canvas

‘Daydreamers’, Motel7’s second solo show, affirms the ease with which she straddles the divide between urban and gallery spaces - where the traditional process of work progressing from gallery environment to museum or public commission, is reversed. The exhibition is presented in her unique visual idiom, built-up over years of working in a challenging environment. The seemingly juxtaposed images of sculls, toys, fruit and sweets are complimented by the vintage quality of the paintings… it’s all about symbolizing daydreaming and nostalgia and the past.

Street art and graffiti are closely associated, but are often regarded as vandalism - evidence of urban decay - in stark contrast to gallery art, which is seen as the epitome of artistic achievement. ‘Daydreamers’ demonstrates that it is not these works themselves which are different, but rather the contexts within which they are viewed.

This exciting exhibition opens tomorrow evening at 18:34.


34FineArt
Second Floor Hills Building, Buchanan Square
160 Sir Lowry Road, Woodstock, Cape Town

Gallery Hours:
Tuesday - Friday 10:34-16:34
Saturday 10:34-13:34

>> www.34fineart.com/

EVENT \\ Exhibition: ‘The Tropic of Soda’ & ‘Time, Time, Time’

The Tropic of Soda - An Exhibition of Drawings by Jean de Wet.

A series of detailed drawings that explores and describes a remote cluster of islands, mutating and evolving for centuries off an unknown and mysterious coast. With the first records of this new and unknown ecology, Jean de Wet presents a strange and opulent world with his idiosyncratic use of dense and hypnotic line work.

Jean works with dip pen and ink on paper of all sizes and will also present a variety of printed matter for this exhibition.

The Tropic of Soda will be the first solo exhibition taking place at /A WORD OF ART.


TIME, TIME, TIME is a new and ongoing collaborative project between Jean de Wet and Cool de Suck (Black Koki and Ello).

Drawing and good times will be exhibited as a silkscreen print and some results from the process.

Both open on October 11th.

>> MORE INFO

EVENT \\ Exhibition: Fuzzy Slipperz in Germany

Vuka Kwedini” will be Mr Fuzzy Slipperz’ first show in Germany and will take place at the Raum Für Drastische Maßnahmen, opening on the 11th of October 2012. Following his first solo show in Cape Town “Something has changed in me” (2010)

The title of the exhibition “Vuka kwedini” means ‘Wake Up Boy’ in Xhosa which is his mother tongue. The title and theme from this line of works seeks to portray our different states of consciousness. Illustrating that though we are awake and seem present, our minds wander off to different internal realms and realities, as if our bodies are walking, talking shells and our minds a vast playground for the imagination. Whether consciously or subconsciously we are constantly playing out our ambitions, anxieties, memories, fears and aspirations and are even able to deal with our troubles and love life this way. “Vuka Kwedini”(Wake Up Boy) is the voice that snaps us back into the real world, like a parent waking their child for school.

>> RSVP on Facebook

EVENT \\ Current Exhibitions in Cape Town

/A Space In Between

A group exhibition of mid-career painters whose explorations of the figure span a wide range of techniques, mediums and aesthetics, blurring the line between fine art, street art and urban art. These five artists are from very different backgrounds and are all pushing the boundaries of their chosen craft to express a strong voice
and vision through their work. Each one at the middle of his career, these artists remain passionate about the journey as well as the end result.”

Featuring:

  • Christiaan Conradie (SA)
  • Dathini Mzayiya (SA)
  • Elicser Elliott (Canada)
  • Franco ‘Jaz’ Fasoli (Argentina)
  • Gaia (USA)
  • Troy Lovegates AKA ‘Other’ (Canada)
  • Ever (Argentina)

>> More info


Asha Zero: numberrs

An exclusive preview of ‘numberrs’ will be held at 34FineArt in Cape Town on 11 September until 22 September, comprising of fifteen new and painstakingly executed paintings. The exhibition will then move to the Pertwee Anderson & Gold in London, opening on 2 October and concludes 23 October 2012.”

Zero’s work is as deceptive as it is honest, at first glance bearing the appearance of paper collage, but on closer inspection revealing careful and considered surface juxtapositions entirely executed in acrylic paint! This body of work is fresh, exceptionally contemporary and relevant in the current urban / digital landscape.”

>> More info HERE or view the exhibition online HERE

EVENT \\ Exhibition: CORE

A mixed-media, contemporary art exhibition featuring the imaginative works of Cape Town artists; Linsey Levendall, Anwar Davids, Leigh Cupido, Nardstar* and Rayaan Cassiem.

September 6 at 7:00pm until
September 29 at 1:00pm

Museum Gallery, Upper East Side, 31 Brickfield Rd, Woodstock, Cape Town

>> Check out some sneak peeks: http://www.facebook.com/COREARTISTS

EVENT \\ Exhibition: Emulate (feat. Banksy)

Emulate, a group exhibition”

21 August – 8 September 2012

This exhibition comprises of new works where the majority reference existing works by other well known artists. It is common knowledge that artists revisit themes; not only have some been duplicating their own works, slightly modifying them, but appropriation is also widely practised. What is more interesting is the process of adaptation and how the new artwork emulates the original.


Banksy
No Ball Games, 2009
Serigraph edition 250
67 x 70cm

Nearly all artwork is in some way already second generation, referencing excising source material. Novelty is not essential in art-making. It has become near impossible to claim anything as original or new. Where it becomes interesting is when there is a third or fourth iteration of the same content by another artist. Artistic freedom and intellectual property infringement tread a precarious path where the difference between copy and new creation sometimes encroach on what is legally acceptable. The proliferation of images in the fast moving digital era via social media’s global reach has accelerated the process of alteration and duplication. Artists “borrow” even more rapidly from existing artworks now available online and even more so when and artist or a work is accompanied by financial success or branding. Iconic images from the past including Michelangelo’s ‘David’, The ‘Mona Lisa’, Marilyn Monroe, Campbell’s Soup cans and Disney iconography have been utilized by numerous contemporary artists. In the show, ‘Flower Thrower’ by Banksy has been reinterpreted by Eyesaw from London. The creativity of true artists lies in how material can be used, modified and adapted as their own.


Eyesaw
This is not an Original Banksy, It’s a Mickey Mouse, 2012
Spraypaint on canvas
111 x 142cm

With one of his biggest commercial shows currently on view in London, the exhibition will include new works by Mr. Brainwash. There will also be works by renowned street art star Banksy, Takashi Murakami, Damien Hirst and established UK artists like Eyesaw, T.WAT, Mau Mau, Grafter, Alec Monopoly and Redlock, never shown here before. Also included are two works by Nancy Fouts. By antagonising historical memory, religious mysticism, authenticity and authorship - conflating the practices of collecting the old and making the new - Nancy gracefully claims her status as one of the most accomplished of conceptual artists.

This exhibition promises to be vibrant and exciting. With summer in Cape Town fast approaching, it is just fitting that ‘Emulate’ will explode on 34FineArt’s walls with vigor while representing some of the major artists’ work from around the world.


Mau Mau
Foxes, 2012
Mixed media on canvas
50 x 70cm


34FineArt
Second Floor Hills Building, Buchanan Square
160 Sir Lowry Road, Woodstock, Cape Town

Gallery Hours:
Tuesday - Friday 10:34-16:34
Saturday 10:34-13:34

>> www.34fineart.com/

EVENT \\ Tabalaza Art Fair 3

Tabalaza Art Fair happens once a month and this will be the 3rd installment…

Art Exhibition | Live Painting | Music
31 May 2012
The Mills, 66 Carr Street, Newtown

>> MORE INFO ON FACEBOOK HERE and HERE

EVENT \\ City of Gold 2012: Festival Program

Find out about everything that is taking place at the upcoming urban art festival, City of Gold below.

EXHIBITIONS

  • CITY OF GOLD EXHIBITION (FESTIVAL OPENING)
    15 APRIL, 16:00
    @ AFRONOVA GALLERY
    Cnr Smit & De Beer Str, Braamfontein
    The City Of Gold Exhibition showcases all the artists participating in the festival and will be open to the public for the week of the festival closing with a walkabout on Saturday 21 Aprilat 12 Noon.
    Featuring: Tasso, Case, Okuda, SoloOne, Atom, Lazoo, Dal East, Angel, Mak1one, Curio, Faith47, Hacone, Rekzo, Rasty, Toe007.

  • MIND, BODY & AEROSOL, GRAFFITI MEETS TATTOO EXHIBITION
    21 APRIL, 18:00
    @ GRAYSCALE GALLERY
    33 De Korte Str, Braamfontein
    The show features South African graffiti artists that have crossed over in to the art of tattooing.
    Featuring: Tyler B Murphy, Anoy 337, Rasty, Rico “Mors” Swanepoel.

STREET MURALS

The participating international and local artists will be collaborating on murals at various sites around the city.
See map below for mural locations.

FILM SCREENINGS

18/19/20 APRIL
@ THE BIOSCOPE
286 Fox Str, Maboneng Precinct, City & Suburban
Three screenings will take place at The Bioscope in Main Street Life.
Visit the website for the schedule and bookings…
www.thebioscope.co.za

STREET ART TOURS

15/17/18/19/ APRIL
By Past Experiences
Educational walking tours focussing on graffiti and street art in and around the city centre.
The tours will visit graffiti hotspots including Troyeville, Newtown and Braamfontein.
Visit the website for the route info, schedule and bookings…
www.pastexperiences.co.za

>> http://www.cityofgoldfestival.co.za/

EVENT \\ Exhibition: Commune / Communicate / Comment

Commune/Communicate/Comment is a collaborative exhibition with /A Word Of Art artists in residence Catherine J Howard (USA), Victoria Potter (Canada), and the residents of Percy Bartley House, a home for boys in need.

This pop-up exhibition is an exploration of community building and social awareness, engaging participants (both the students and event attendees) in a dialogue about interconnectedness, playful collaboration, and empathy.

Catherine has been having workshops at the home where she posed questions about our roles in our communities and our power to make positive changes. The boys illustrated their responses and Victoria photographed and interviewed them at work, finding out about their experiences within the project. The exhibition also aims to use colour and creative practice to inspire the youth and the artists in an active exchange and interaction.

The photographs taken during the workshops will be compiled into a limited edition photo book, alongside essays by both Catherine and Victoria. Books will be available for pre-order at the pop-up exhibition as well as online. 50% of the profits from sales of the Commune/Communicate/Comment photo book will be donated to Percy Bartley House to help the juvenile boys.

Check out a sneak peak of some of the works HERE.

When:
Saturday, 14 April (3pm - 6pm)

Where:
Percy Bartley House, 44 Pine Str off Victoria Ave
Woodstock, Cape Town

>> RSVP on Facebook

EVENT \\ City of Gold 2012 Exhibition and Opening

City of Gold Urban Art Festival 2012 opens this Sunday (15 April) at 4pm – 9pm at Afronova Gallery in Braamfontein, Johannesburg.

The festival will kick off with an exhibition featuring local and international graffiti artists. This will be a chance for the public to meet the artists, and get a sneak peak as to what the week of collaborations will bring. The exhibition will be the first of its kind in South Africa, bringing together highly respected artists from around the world and pioneers of the local graffiti scene. Featuring a broad spectrum of artists and styles, audiences will experience the dynamic and versatile nature of this misunderstood art form.

The exhibition will be open to the public every day for the week of the festival (10am - 5pm) closing with a walkabout on Saturday 21 April at 12 Noon.

>> http://www.cityofgoldfestival.co.za/

EVENT \\ Exhibition: Between Ourselves

Between Ourselves”

A solo exhibition by Jade Doreen Waller

Opens tonight, 27 March, and runs until 28 April 2012

The artwork of Jade Doreen Waller is characterised by an ethereal punctuation of symbols, whispering of a magical momentary fusion of the past, the present and the future. Waller’s allegories, a glimpse into her world, are superbly realised with meticulous detail, reminiscent of Dutch and Flemish styles. Her works are inescapably alluring, enticing one into a deep oceanic subconscious, aesthetically aided by the classical yet uncluttered compositions, the smooth sumptuousness of paint, cold pearlescent colour, tangible and accessible detail, and the radiance of dark contrasts.

Like the jellyfish, Waller says, one can easily become suspended between the beginning and the end of life, carried away by the ocean of circumstance between the surface and the seabed. Ironically, though preoccupied with birth and death, Waller’s work captures the transient currents between these two points. The corruption of heavy experience hangs on the eyelids of innocent dolls, whose thick black lashes gaze downwards intensely, contemplating their own vulnerability. Suspended in Satin cocoons, they hover between the end and the beginning, between the beginning and the end - like pupas without agency, programmed to hatch. Images of dead trees, brittle skulls, classical clocks, busy rats, graceful hawks and puffy moths are all part of Waller’s symbolic vocabulary, suggestive of experiences which, for her, have the tendency to steal both an authentic self and the real ‘here and now’ moments of life. Such reflections are necessary, Waller says, because, “continuously faced with the arrival and departure of life, we often lose the sense of what everything in-between means.”

Sewing Skulls, 2012
Oil on canvas
100 x 100cm

The scenes of Waller’s works are set for performance, transcending their permanence; she sets a stage, reinforced by the theatrical drapery of symbolic punctuation, all composed with a discerning design sense. The bizarre juxtaposition of objects, their unexpected arrangements, and their realist but metallic execution all work to create artworks that speak to the discourse of Pop Surrealism, in which young artists use traditional methods in contemporary ways.

Her ability to innovatively manipulate and combine contrasting images offers a lucid insight into how Waller interprets and perceives her surrounding reality. Although this young and innovative artist is freshly graduated, she is making waves in the interdisciplinary visual art industry with her unique approach to Urban Contemporary art.

34FineArt
Second Floor Hills Building, Buchanan Square
160 Sir Lowry Road, Woodstock, Cape Town

Gallery Hours:
Tuesday - Friday 10:34-16:34
Saturday 10:34-13:34

Suspended Perch, 2012
Oil on canvas
130 x 70cm

>> www.34fineart.com/

EVENT \\ Tabalaza Art Fair

Tabalaza is presented as more than a Art Fair, but as an experience that connects the past and the present, to determine a bright future where there will be NO MORE STARVING ARTISTS. Getting paid is a fundamental right we realise and celebrate. That is what TABALAZA is about!

Bringing you the finest artworks, live music and coolest DJ’s - come jive with us, TABALAZA STYLE!

Where: The Mills, 66 Carr St, Newtown, Jhb
When: 29 March 2012
Time: 18H00 til late
Entrance fee: R30 before 10pm, R50 after
NB: NO CAMERAS ALLOWED at the event!


Hosted by Shimane Kgololego and Sparks with DJ’s Phibia, Qalo, Mad Coolia, Deeboi, Pilsy Lee, Black and TS, and spoken word performances by Mothofela, Makhafula Vilakazi and a surprise poetess.

Art works by:

  • Sine BSC
  • Kef1
  • SmackOner
  • Propa
  • Tsek SAT
  • Amp1
  • At SEC
  • God176
  • Rocas UP
  • Crome STA
  • Olivier Company

There will also be a live performance by Soweto rock band Reeburth, live tattoos by Ryza WM, live painting by Senzo Nhlapho, live installation by Themba “Dreader” Malaza, and a mini-market.

>> MORE INFO

EVENT \\ City of Gold Urban Art Festival 2012

The second City of Gold Urban Art Festival has just been announced, and things are said to kickoff in April 2012. This year features international graffiti artists Atom (Germany), SoloOne (UK), Lazoo (France), Okuda (Spain) and Tasso & Case from Ma’claim Crew (Germany).

Yumanizumu (Japan) in South Africa

Another international artist to visit South Africa recently was Japanese artist Yumanizumu from Tokyo. As part of the /A Word Of Art Artist Residence programme, he painted and exhibited in both Cape Town and Johannesburg from September to November 2011. Highlights included the Paste Street Exhibition, the I Art Soweto project, as well as his solo exhibition “In To You”.

Read more about his trip and exhibition HERE and be sure to check out his blog documenting his stay: http://www.awoa-residency-yumanizumu.blogspot.com/

>> http://www.yumanizumu.jp/

EVENT \\ Exhibition: Community Service

Community Service is the first solo exhibition by graffiti artist Phillip Botha, who has been involved in graffiti arts for over twelve years. Recently he spent a year under house arrest, prosecuted for Malicious Intent to Property, completing over 150 hours of community service - mopping floors and washing cop cars instead of actually engaging with the community and helping them like the artist had wanted.

Community Service brings chunks of the urban environment into the gallery space. An examination of the notions of community and environment – and what it means to better an environment – the pieces work in layers of graffiti tags and throw-ups, nightclub event posters, election posters, abortion flyers, penis enlargement stickers, finished off with something that borders typography and sign-writing. It is a look into the urban environment by an individual who occupies that environment - “a real representative of the street” – it is a collection for the community and from the community.

>> RSVP on Facebook

>> www.community-service.posterous.com/

EVENT \\ Exhibition: Frame of Mind

Frame of Mind
A Street Art exhibition by Prefix

Friday, 27 January 2012
Buyambo Music & Art Exhibition Centre
11 Bree Street, Cape Town, South Africa

>> MORE INFO