The UNISA 4th year Exhibition presents a bag of thought provoking ideas about what challenges the South African society is struggling with.
Thematically speaking it is a journey from the self to the populace. Of course since the works are heavy in conceptual content and considerable in scale they may not make it into the private ordinary person collection echelons. These gestures are better suited for corporations. They are gestures to be savored in open uncontested conversations.
The exhibition closes on 20 January 2017.
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«
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
Elinye Ithuba is one of those works that interrogates the effects of our sacrifices and the fact that to undo the deeds that might have gotten us in trouble the first time around we might just have to pay a heavy price
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Τhere is a moment in Elinye Ithuba wherein Dumisani (Blondie Makhene) and Hlengiwe (Slindile Nodangala)are reminiscing about the past and laments the time that Dumisani missed while he was in jail and music is playing in the background. Jovially he asks her who is the musician playing this good music and Hlengiwe responds that it is Blondie, surprisingly Dumisani exclaims that who would’ve thought that Blondie would still be singing after all these years∇
The Ring attempts to be funny while it deals with the overcooked classic tale of love. Is there anything to say in this theme? Not really, except for the reshuffle of the sign system and point of view vis-à-vis perspective. Despite a few strong points here and there this film has its moments but offers us nothing new. It whispers to us a feather light 2deF’Points out of Five: ♦ ♦ /¶
There are works that simply repeat what we have seen before by just changing the context within which their narratives are rooted and then push the narratives towards us. One, supposedly a discerning viewer, can forgive such narratives for their repetitive swing if they are adorned with strong points in their construction. If the work is revisionist in its take of the subject matter concerned then the discerning viewer is in for a treat. If there is a lack in this regard but the work makes up for it in its actors performances or its production design which may represent a strong center point in the delivery of the narrative, the viewer – discerning or lay, may be forgiving as far as the failure of the work to advance story telling is concerned. The Ring, which falls in the latter spectrum is rescued by an ensemble of its actors as it tries to impress¶
Ilizwi is a proposal that hints at what we could see in the future in terms of the bourgeoning South African film industry once the M-Net in Motion Academy 2015 Interns are striking it out on their own and are brave enough to venture outside of the box. The film initiates a new paranormal tale with a slight thrill build up and delivers to us a gentle 3deF’Points out of Five: ♦ ♦ ♦ /¶
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The story of paranormal activity with a twist of traditional African beliefs has been told before. In any case it would seem quite weird but not impossible for a protagonist to be inserted in a story set in South Africa wherein they are mysteriously blessed with telepathic prowess without attributing their power to some ancestral lineage. Imagine if there was such a film? Contextually speaking the creatives involved will have to push the imaginary envelope where no one has gone before. That place does exist. It is outside of the box¶
Mmutle. What was your experience of the, of the first solo exhibition that you had …and when was it?
Senzo. My first solo exhibition I called it I ‘Naked Pressure’ it was in 2010 if I am not mistaken, because I met David Krut, no 2011, I met David Krut uhm, uhm after I won the David Koloane Award in 2010. Trhough the award I acquired a working space here at the Bag Factory for three months. I was working with three international artists, one from Holland and one from Germany. For the first time uBaba koloane, I call him Doctor Koloane, Pat Mautloa, these people were here, they were around me and they were mentoring me, being there molding me. In the morning before we worked they will have coffee with me and they will talk to me. They gave me the opportunity to explore what I wanted to explore.
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?
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.
Do not engage intimately with software programs for they too, like full blooded live humans, need maintenance; seem to be the warning that this film carry.
HER is Slow, silent and grindingly haunting. It’s a story that warns us on over reliance on computer programs to the verge where we think about them as partners …hysterically as lovers, we might punctuate. Do not engage intimately with software programs for they too, like full blooded live humans, need maintenance; seem to be the warning that this film carry. Give yourself a break before you sit through this film again. It’s not bad, in fact it is great. Besides the stellar cast it is hedged upright for attention by the novelty of the idea it harbors, that necessarily makes it an original venture plot wise that is, as well as an interesting production and costumes designs. We give it 3 dEFPoints out of Five: ♦♦♦¶