INTRAPARADOX: Interview with Wonder Buhle Mbambo

The Wonder of Comfort

27 November 2020 at about 10:30, BKhz Studio, Johannesburg

Overture

It is always refreshing to become aware of new art, to be acquainted with a new vision. I have had the privilege of sitting down with Wonder Buhle Mbambo. To listen to his life’s journey as an artist up to the point where we were sitting down at BKhz Studio for our interview. That Friday morning, thanks to unforeseen circumstances, I arrived at around ten thirty in Johannesburg, Braamfontein, for an appointment that would have taken place at nine.

Earlier on before the scheduled interview, Banele Khoza and I headed out to a café around the corner for some coffee. For me, a few times I have been there has set this part of the corner of Juta and De Beer Streets as a familiar spot for beverages and light meals. This would possibly be my last coffee there under familiar circumstances. But let me not get ahead of myself. 

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The next interception…

Upcoming blog post: Intraparadox

[We] are happy to announce that the transcript of our interview with Wonder Buhle Mbambo, through the support of BKhz Studio, will be made available this coming Friday morning. It was a privilege to have the chance to intercept Mbambo at this point in his career.

This edition to the Intraparadox archival series, signals the beginning of a new volume in an art historical approach commitment that started with Tshepo Mosopa more than a decade ago.

May we find the artist.

Comfort, the centre piece

Wonder Buhle. Comfort (2020). Acralyc and metallic gold on Canvas. 163X 330 cm (Reserved)

[I] have tried not to be persuaded by my experience of talking to the artist and working on the transcription of our conversation not to read too much on his life’s impact on his work. However as I worked through the text I could not help but notice the symbols at work in his artistic output. These symbols are noticeable in the work Comfort (2020) which is also the title of the solo exhibition on show at BKhz Studio at the moment.   

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COACO: Perhaps to the river we will arrive

» Sometime in 2005 the exhibition Take Me To The River (TMTTR) took place at the Pretoria Art Museum¹. That exhibition featured a group of international artists amongst them South African artists, Nicholas Hlobo, Sharlene Khan and Churchill Madikida (now Songezile Madikida). At that time the Genesis II exhibition was at its infancy. I recall how at the opening of that exhibition on the evening of Wednesday 25 May Together with some of the Education Assistants (Museum Volunteers) of that time, Thami Msimango, Nthabiseng Rachel Montshiwa and Mxolisi Xaba, we looked at what the TMTTR as a project had achieved; which was the group exhibition as well as the incorporation of art made by learners from Gatang Secondary School. This left us with a satisfied feeling that the learners eventually when they arrived that evening to for the opening would see where art can take them and where it eventually belonged when an artists is established; when their work became heritage.

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EarVasion – SAKHILE MOLESHE: The Final Call

SAKHILE MOLESHE: The Final Call

Released: December 21, 2018

label: Imilozi Music

Number of tracks: 15

Length: 1:09:12

Here is an album that challenges monotonous conventions while proving that an album does not have to be one thing; it can be many things held together by artistic innovation and creativity.

sakhile moleshe screenshot_20190122

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Tekkies

  1. Introduction

In this essay my aim is to discuss the Biography of the Jack Purcell sneakers. It will emerge that there is no way that the story can be told without considering the space within which the shoe has been bought and the processes that leads to its acquisition.

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What do painters do all day?

»When I first received the invitation to this exhibition I thought I would perhaps see an array of paraphernalia of what amuses artists when they are at home chilled and not occupied with the uncertain nature of the visual art object. After all can one really work all day long without rest? As an artist, unless you are employed in a dimly lit sweatshop, there must be something else that occupies you during your art practice on any given day. I walked away from my viewing of the exhibition fortified in the idea that artists wrestle all day long with making art; even when they are suppose to be taking a breather«

IMG_20181220_144307.jpg

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Absence

‘the state of being away from a place or person’

At this time of the year people make resolutions to do better in the New Year. For a guy who does not make resolutions I think it is great if the resolutions that they have made the previous year have been realized even if it is partial. Whichever way you look at it this is the time of reflection. A time of taking stock of things. I am not a guy who shoulder New Year’s resolutions very well simply because I just think resolutions can be a strict way of living one’s life. Since in the past when I made resolutions I tended to drop them quarter-way in the New Year after a stern concentration of seeing them through for a spell.  Look, I acknowledge that there are moments when one just makes a decision to do something with their life and the pursuit it naturally. For some people it comes without effort. Like those artists who work day and night, throw consignment all over Gauteng in hope, topped with some spunk, to withstand the torrents until someone gives a big break.

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Gestures

The UNISA’s 2016 4th Year Exhibition

 » An academic exhibition for fourth year students is an important milestone in the career of the art student. Simultaneously a fourth year art exhibition is a grand gesture from the institution itself to say to art patrons that this is our achievement over the past four years or so; This is the direction that art might take. Of course the ‘direction’ will solely rely on the art students themselves should they pursue their art practice further beyond academia because there is a vast difference between making art for marks and making art to say something within the annals of the fine arts fraternity mindful of commerce and socio-political environments. Even without care to these preoccupations for the artist to make art and contribute to human culture by continuously evolving the art object towards certain possibilities or ‘direction’, to retain the set tone above, it is a resounding milestone in their art practice «  

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Diary log 5 November

10-to-collide

The first draft of Intraparadox: Interview with Nelmarie du Preez which I conducted on 26 September 2016 is complete. It has been long overdue but I have completed it finally ! Over the next couple of weeks I will be readying it for blogging. It has been a difficult period writerly to emerge from the 47 minutes of this interview because of other pending projects as well professional workload elsewhere. But as always it has been a great pleasure to delve into the body of work that was featured in the SASOL NEW Signatures Solo exhibition 2016 through the perspective of the interview. Du Preez comes across surprisingly as spontaneous and a humorous as a person. To a greater extent she is clinical in her execution of her technologically driven work. You can look forward to a discovery of GUI (Graphic User Interface) and the discourse between herself and this phenomenon that gives birth to her idea about art and technology. May we find the artist.

Subject – Intraparadox: Interview with Nelmarie du Preez