Interview with Mxolisi Vusimuzi Beauchamp (Part III)

Location: Pretoria Art Museum, Tshwane, South Africa

Date: Tuesday 17 February 2015 at 09:00

Part Three:

Identity /Ideology Bamboozled

 

Mmutle. So would you say the idea of identity in terms of the content of the work started to take shape somewhere during this period, as you were exposed to the work of Spike Lee in comparison to the work of John Singleton?

Vusi. There was another artist, an English-Nigerian who used Elephant dung in his artworks. I forget his name. But like in identity, interrogating the idea of identity you know in the arts Spike Lee’s ‘Bamboozled’ sort of put at rest my anger towards the way blacks were excluded. You know that movie it made sense in a way that entertainment and such things were not something that was reserved for black people in a way. Entertainment wise it was mocking them. That was the entertainment industry and I just wanted to find a way for escaping or teaching [myself] or finding a way to express my anger through specifying that there is a difference between an artist and a black artist. They are two different things.

Mmutle. You mean the difference between a white artist…?

Vusi. No-no, the difference between an artist and a black artist. You know if you are black you are not an artist you are a ‘black artist’. So there is that thing…

[Mmutle. So you are not an artist pure – you are a black artist.]

Vusi. That’s what helped me to interrogate this thing. I have always saw myself as an artist…

Mmutle. And now this dichotomy of

Beauchamp, Mxolisi Vusimuzi. New Industry, 2015. Mixed Media.

Beauchamp, Mxolisi Vusimuzi. New Industry, 2015. Mixed Media.

(more…)

Interview with Mxolisi Vusimuzi Beauchamp (Part II)

Location: Pretoria Art Museum, Tshwane, South Africa

Date: Tuesday 17 February 2015 at 09:00

 Part Two:

Intellectual Rebellion/No holes on the Walls

Mmutle. You’ve now moved into an interesting period where you are now studying at University level, at Tshwane University of Technology. If you were to compare your training at Tshwane University of Technology and your exposure to fine arts at high school. What were the differences in these two institutionS?

Vusi. There is a difference, the difference was that in high school I was left to my own devices to achieve freedom that I had and I was passing, I was marked for doing what I was doing naturally. With TUT they were teaching me techniques now, that’s the first time I explored oils, you know, and I was taught how to mix, using oils and the techniques, and applying oil and all those sorts of things and exploring different dimensions that I’ve never experimented with as in using acrylic paints to oil, actually layering the artwork – scumbling and [the] glazing of the artwork. I really enjoyed the paintings of Rembrandts, the van Gogh style, the Vermeer, Dutch painters and stuff. Well, like I said we were exposed mostly to the Europeans [artists]

Mmutle. Of course

Vusi. Style of painting a subject in a way a still life and figurative type of thing…

Mmutle. Did it bode well to you that your training at Tshwane University of Technology tended to focus more on Western Art than it exposed you to African Art or South African Art?

Beuchamp, Mxolisi Vusimuzi. The Future, 2015. Mixed Media.

Beuchamp, Mxolisi Vusimuzi. The Future, 2015. Mixed Media.

(more…)

Interview with Mxolisi Vusimuzi Beauchamp (Part I)

Location: Pretoria Art Museum, Tshwane, South Africa

Date: Tuesday 17 February 2015 at 09:00

 Part One:

Childhood and Exposure to Arts Education

 

Mmutle Arthur Kgokong: Good morning Vusi Beauchamp, thanks for giving me the opportunity to interview you.

Mxolisi Vusimuzi Beauchamp: Thanks Mr. Mmutle

Mmutle AK: I just want us to start a little bit at the beginning of your life, when were you born?

Mxolisi VB: 1979 the third of May

MAK: and where did you grow up?

MVB: I grew up in Mamelodi Pretoria and I spent most of life there.

Mmutle: So you are a Pretorian

Vusi. Yes, I was made in Pretoria (Jokes)

Mmutle. (Laughs), if you can just tell me about your early childhood experiences. What was it like growing up in Mamelodi?

Mxolisi Vusimuzi Beauchamp at work. Image source, the artist facebook profile.

Beauchamp at work on The Great Maestro. Image source, the artist facebook profile.

(more…)

Interview with Senzo Njabulo Shabangu (Part One): Today, Tomorrow, Everyday

Location: LL Editions Fine Art Printing, The Bag Factory, Johannesburg, South Africa

Date: Friday 28 November 2014 at 09:00

Mmutle Arthur Kgokong: Well I just want to thank you Senzo for giving me the time to talk to you especially here in the studio, not at your home where you will be bombarded with house chores (jokingly).

Senzo Njabulo Shabangu: (laughs) true

Mmutle AK: Yah, here it’s much better because it is your work space.

Senzo NS: Yes we can, …I understand, we can…

Mmutle: At the moment you are here at The Bag Factory neh?

Senzo: Yes

MAK: You are working on a new body of work? Tell me what is the work about actually in terms of the content of what you are dealing with for this new body of work?

Senzo. It’s like, I have been dealing a lot with issues of Joburg pressure because to me it is easy to realize that pressure the city has. So since I came here (in) 2006 I have been feeling that pressure like …at home when you are in the city they have their own expectations and as an artist it is also difficult. It is difficult for everyone the way a city designed because it’s got that pressure and for me as someone who comes outside of the city it’s easy for me to feel that pressure.

(more…)

Andrew Tshidiso Motjuoadi (Ico-Graph)

AMotjouadi Photo1935, May 13: Andrew 1Tshidiso Motjuoadi is Born in Limpopo (formerly Known as Northern Transvaal)

1935 – 1960: 2there is a scarcity of documentation around the artist life during this period.

1961 – 1962: Studies in Durban and University of the North

1963: First one man show in Johannesburg

1964: Motjuoadi is commissioned to paint backgrounds for Cornel Wilde’s film The Naked Prey

1965: Participates in several group exhibitions; (The Penny Whistlers)

1966: Awarded a prize in the Artists of Fame and Promise Exhibition, Johannesburg; (Kwela Boys)

1967: Andrew Motjuoadi Suffers a Stroke

1968: Motjuoadi passes away after being paralyzed for nearly a year. The artists surviving body of work is handed over to Esmé Berman for safe keeping.

1971: A memorial – Retrospective Exhibition of his work is held, Johannesburg, South African Association of Arts Gallery, Herbert Evans, Johannesburg.

1988: He is included in the The Neglected Tradition Exhibition¸Johannesburg Art Gallery

1990: He is included in the exhibition Looking at Our Own: Africa, Pretoria Art Museum

Andrew Motjouadi, Study for Township Life 2

Andrew Motjuoadi, Study for Township Life 2

 

Notes:

  1. Esmé Berman acknowledges the artist name in full name (see Berman, E 1983, page 200). Art and Artists of South Africa: An Illustrated Biographical Dictionary and Historical survey of Painters, Sculptors and Graphic Artists Since 1875. A. Balkema, South Africa, Johannesburg.

 

  1. Motjuoadi is considered to be a self taught artist, the period from 1935 to 1960 wherein the artists could have been brought up in a particular community in Northern Transvaal/Limpopo has not been documented in the sources that were available during my research. This represents a great puzzle in the life of this artist. This period could prove valuable in ascertaining where he attained his primary education, high school education as well as a form of arts education or contact with art or western traditional art making materials such as pencil and paper which he was conversant with. More research is needed in this period of the artist’s life, such research could shed light into the gap that exists in Motjuoadi’s life. Armed with this missing data we might perhaps also be afforded the opportunity to delve into the choice of style of the artist in the light of contact with visual art stimulus that the artist might have come into contact with during the initial year of his art practice.

 

© Mmutle Arthur Kgokong 2015

mmutleak@gmail.com

follow @mmutleak

 

Diary entry: Interview with Senzo Njabulo Shabangu#28/11/Twenty14.

Senzo@work

Ï spent part of today’s morning at the Bag Factory, LL Editions Fine Arts Printmaking Studio in Newtown, Johannesburg, interviewing Senzo Njabulo Shabangu. He is currently working on a new body of work for an upcoming exhibition next year in September. ‘The exhibition is both here and in New York. I have decided to work in different spaces in order to broaden my horizon as an artist’  he states as he looks around him.

His studio is in Jan Smuts Avenue at David Krut Print Workshop. It is always such an honor to be afforded the opportunity to be immersed in the life of an artist. The next step is to make the interview accessible to you. This means the wordathonian chuchu train will be churning away behind the wordmachiniacon over the next weeks. If there is anything that emerged from my interview with Senzo was a sneak behind the vanishing corner of what theoretically his work could be about; Although I cannot speak with authority at the moment, but what emerged was an interrogation of the dwelling space, the apartment, the urban flatlands, as a contested space between those who rent and those who lease. I hope that later on, your reading of the interview will help us make headway either towards affirming this theoretical perspective or its refutation.

Interview with Senzo Njabulo Shabangu @BagFactoryII 28112014

Summer

28 November

© Mmutle Arthur Kgokong 2014

mmutleak@gmail.com

follow at twitter @posthighdef21

Colonial Discourse – art production

î∩ the visual arts the choice of subject matter, method of representation, the content of the work as well as the context within which a work of art is produced plays significant role in how the message inherent in the work is conveyed. Bearing these factors in mind when confronted with a work of art will stand us in good stead as we attempt to make sense of what we are looking at and aid us reach some understanding what role that particular work of art played within its original context. One can agree that a work of art continues to reflect its original intended message through time. What changes through time is the context within which it is viewed or exhibited. But the original context if known by the viewer can always be brought into the viewing in order for the viewer to appreciate what kind of a message the work might have been intended to convey when it was produced.  In this very short essay I will attempt to show how colonial discourse influenced art production by referring to two artworks. I shall analyze the two artworks in terms of

1) Colonial discourse

2) Post-colonial discourse

(more…)