This multimedia exhibition is more like a get together of like minded individuals on a particular topic that has plagued, inspired and informed the paths of the participants involved. Even though it is curated by one individual which in this case merely brings the artists together through an idea that encompasses a variety of imagery, sounds, memories and experiences. In unity, the shared experience is within the perspective of being born and bred in South Africa with birth dates circulating around the late 70’s and early 80’s among the members of this collective. Individually, each member’s upbringing and cultural experiences may strikingly differ depending on the diverse mix of heritage and ancestry.
The journey that begins and ends with one’s birth, those that came before from all over the world to South Africa where each artist was born to the beginning of a new journey where the artist must now go forth only to discover a journey beyond as well as through ancestry. Some of these artists share ancestry in the indigeneous roots of this land, a place itself rich with history, bloodshed, birth, joy and inspiration.
3 artists get together to discuss this journey, albeit not an easy discussion through visual markmaking, drawing finding roots in something spiritual. Thinking spiritually and in memory all at once about who they are as individuals in land rich in nature, complicated, in man’s design to divide and conquer, separate and overpower.
What came before us that may nourish our bodies to push forward into the future? The draftsman will be joined by Future Nostalgia, sound archivists and selectors who search through recorded material i.e. vinyl records threading similar questions as they journey along. Collin the Bushman, Cape Khoi, educator and teacher of the searching souls gather around this sage, minister of sound and Echoes, will deliver a performance on the night.
We may remember the memories of our forefathers and greatest grandmothers. We may dwell further into the land designed by Others. Or we may discover along the way, the Wise guiding us back Home via the spaceways telling stories of the lonely Khoi girl that flung hot coals across the sky creating the Galaxy-Cies and befriended the stars. Hot coals that bred the Fire we huddle around for warmth, for song, for laughter.
Son of a Mantis
16 November – 17 December 2016
Curated by Grant Jurius
Featuring work by Anwar Davids, Graeme Arendse & Grant Jurius
Including a performance by Collin Meyer aka Collin The Boesman
Music by Future Nostalgia
The title alludes to an ancient Khoi folklore titled ‘The Son Of The Mantis’ (!Gaunu-Tsaxau)
The son of the Mantis is killed by the Baboons, and restored to life by his father. This piece contains specimens of the manner in which the Bushman language is supposed to be spoken by baboons. By /han≠kass’o (L VIII.-11. 6978-7014, 12. 7065-7094). !gaunu-tsaxau, the son of |kaggen (the Mantis) collects sticks for his father to shoot at the Baboons and comes across some Baboons, who beat him and break his head. |kaggen dreams that the Baboons have killed !gaunu-tsaxau and are playing with his eye. He awakes and goes to join in the Baboons’ game and the child’s eye smells its father’s scent and plays about so that the Baboons cannot catch it. |kaggen catches his child’s eye and anoints it with his perspiration and it flies into the air and into the quiver’s bag. He flies into the water and speaks to his child’s eye, wanting his child to return to life again. It grows back into his son and |kaggen catches him and takes him back home.
This exhibition of drawing, painting and sound looks at the importance of art, music, painting and storytelling within our cultural history, specifically from an African perspective. As African artists who spring from mixed heritage within the Cape Town context, we want to keep in mind the practices of not only our forefathers but those who have reaped from this continent since ancient times. From the period when indigenous peoples were living freely off the land, to colonial times where art, music and storytelling persist as a means to survive culturally as human beings.
The act of sitting around a fire, conveying stories and myths; making music and spoken word poetry; painting and making pictures require as little resources now as they did in ancient Africa. Even with advanced technology and tools, maintaining the Spirit of these practices is important. It is an exhibition to honour our ancestors of the Land who have left behind traces of rock art, spiritual books and ancient rhythms. These are forms we still enjoy today with modern tools like spray cans for graffiti, instruments in music and folklores & tales adapted to the present. These are things that keep an ever evolving African culture afloat against the grain of struggle.
Opens Wednesday 16 November, 6-8pm
Followed by an ‘after-opening-party’ (more details to follow)
Anwar Davids is a Creative hailing from the Cape Flats district in Cape Town, a place full of colour and challenges. Davids’ fascination with graffiti and street art lead him to study Graphic Design at Cape College, where he was influenced by Cubism, Surrealism and Pop Art. Influenced by personal experience and current affairs, his experimental style allows Davids to challenge his creativity and create artworks that express his passion.
Graeme Arendse is, in no particular order, a Designer, Illustrator, Comics Artist, Fong Kong Bantu, Chimurenga People.
Grant Jurius was born and bred in the Northern Suburbs community of Elsies River surrounded by the Cape Flats. His preferred choice of medium is drawing, painting and installation. He a is co-founder of the Burning Museum collective; a member of the vinyl collecting and DJ collective Future Nostalgia; and founder of the street art & graffiti artist based initiative The Street is the Gallery.
He has exhibited at various galleries including: group shows at Artvark in Kalk Bay; MM Galleries in Muizenberg and a group exhibition he curated in Elsies River; and a solo exhibition at Black Box Gallery in June 2013. In May 2012, Jurius was awarded the Lionel Davis Award which included a residency at Greatmore Studios, funded by the National Arts Council. At the end of the residency, he participated in a group show with fellow residents titled Loopings.
Exhibition flyer designed by Graeme Arendse, illustration by Grant Jurius
Flyer designed and illustrated by Graeme Arendse
Designed by Graeme Arendse, illustration by Anwar Davids