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In March, Lizamore & Associates host their annual mentorship exhibitions, Lonely Nights by Banele Khoza and Nkululeko – Freedom by Alex Msibi.
Banele Khoza, the Johannes Stegmann Mentorship Programme mentee, was mentored by Colbert Mashile over the last year. The recipient of the Thami Mnyele Mentorship Prize, Alex Msibi, was mentored by Jaco van Schalkwyk over the last six months. These exhibitions open on 9 March 2017 at 18:00.
Lonely Nights by Banele Khoza, shows a break from the intimate digital and ink drawings that Khoza has gained traction with in the industry. Alongside his intimate works, he now creates large ethereal paintings. This exhibition reflects the artist’s experience during 210 consecutive nights spent mostly in isolation, whilst in conversation with his artmaking materials. The feelings that this experience evoked, is familiar to the artist: “When have my nights not been lonely? Leaving for boarding school at the age of 13 was probably a start to these traumatic nights. Ten years later: I am still far from home, I have woken up into this routine and no one is there to question if I had a good day, my house only becomes a home with the presence of friends and family and the moment they step out it becomes four walls with concrete furniture.” Khoza continues his ongoing exploration of the complexities of the digital realm, critically commenting on the voyeuristic element of social media. Through this exhibition, he explores the loneliness users often experience when engaging on social media; whilst looking at the illusionary “exciting lives” of other users, one still lacks human interaction.
Alex Msibi’s solo project, Nkululeko – Freedom is an extension of the artwork, Desiccated In State of Tranquility he won the Thami Mnyele Painting Prize with in 2016. What appears to be in contrast with the title, his imagery mostly deals with concepts of suffocation, pain, survival or death. Together with a performative film, his paintings mostly capture suffocating figures inside plastic bags. Some of these scenes are set in his hometown, Newcastle Madadeni, In Kwazulu-Natal. The artist metaphorically portrays the angst and fear of dying or entrapment in an abusive relationship. One might feel uneasy with the intensity and horror of the scenes, but at the same time strangely comforted by the skilled painting and harmonious colour pallet. These morbid scenes might appear to be tranquil and even romantic. It is as if Msibi wants to lull the viewer into knowing that death is not necessarily an end but could in fact be a new beginning. After all, it was his near-death experience that inspired a career in the Arts and his zest for life.
These exhibitions open on 9 March 2017 at 18:00 and ends on 30 March 2017 at the Lizamore & Associates gallery, 155 Jan Smuts Avenue, Parkwood. Join us for a glass of wine, live music and to meet the artists.