The question is where and why? Talk segued into the values of the regional, traditional, parochial. As the poet’s grandmother said, ‘When you take off the school blazer so do you take off the language’, for South Africa’s cultures remained opposed, bi-polar, essential yet in transit.Read More
Nothing feels good right now, nothing is wholesome, equitable, reasonable, or honest. Self-hatred and the hatred of others is omnipresent worldwide. Paul Gilroy’s notion of a ‘planetary humanism’ is bankrupt, even as his ‘black Atlantic’ chugs along.Read More
From the other side of the street, Kyle Morland’s sculptures in the gallery window are almost seamlessly set into the landscape of so many other interior design houses on the Sir Lowry Strip. After shop names like Urban Spaces, Rumour Has it, Occulus Interiors, Interior Solutions; Blank Projects rolls quite smoothly off the tongue. Looking both ways and crossing over, the tasteful geometry of the showroom looms larger, begins to turn in on itself, and the aura of Modern Living begins to falter.Read More
In a society ground down by conviction, protest, anger, outrage, hurt, misery, frustration, confusion, despair, and worst of all, nihilism, a society unnervingly determined by a death instinct, Botha chooses to give us life. That life, immersed in the transcendent and metaphysical, is however also a life of the fallen. For if Botha is a metaphysician he is also a postlapsarian, a fallen man, Icarus perhaps, with his wings scorched by his own hubris, a figure as aspirational and tragic as he is quintessentially human.Read More
At this point in time it would be a far cry to say that Stern’s bubble has come anywhere close to popping. It would rather be fair to say that the secondary art market would indeed want nothing less; when a bubble pops, uncertainty ripples and the chain of events can be devastating.
A way of mitigating such circumstances is to search for new avenues to invest in and inflate the value of, so drawing attention away from the fact that artists with long, well established track records are either unavailable or no longer finding the results they once did. In this way the market floats and all the bubbles stay on the surface with their glistening surface areas of confidence intact.Read More
The results of Aspire Art Auctions debut sale are in and the numbers tell a story of an art market that is ready to come to the party…almost. One of the first things auction houses will tell you about is their “sell through rate”. This is the percentage of the lots that actually sold on the auction. In these terms Aspire’s first sale recorded a 76% sell through rate. Put into more tangible numbers; of the 121 lots a total of 92 sold.Read More
Irma Stern has long dominated the secondary art market in South Africa as well as featuring abroad with the auction houses of Bonhams, Sotheby’s and Christies all having prodigious sales records of her work. A direct result of this success in sterling is that major lots usually find themselves heading out the country as consigners choose to cash in on the attractive dividends offered by the British pound.
Despite this, the South African auction house Strauss & Co. have managed to buck such a trend by achieving significant prices locally with with the high record of R21m for Stern’s Two Arabs set in 2012. A reason is that the rigmarole for obtaining export licenses through the South African Heritage Resources Agency (SAHRA) and the auctioneers premiums mean that local is increasingly lekker.Read More
In other news, as the attention of the country was firmly fixed on the proceedings of the Northern Gauteng High Court where the UDM, the EFF, the DA and COPE all sought to have Citizen Number 1 and his cronies’ interdict against the release of the #statecapturereport quashed, a different kind of drama played itself out in the Western Cape High Court.
There, photographer Zwelethu Mthethwa stands accused of the brutal murder of sex worker Nokuphila Kumalo in 2013. Represented by the fluffy legal pitbull William Booth who is notorious for ensuring that his high profile clients walk free, the case has been defined by a series of stop-start proceedings that has seen justice consistently delayed. The trial is set to resume next week Monday. Be sure to watch adjective’s twitter handle @theadjective_ for live tweets of the proceedings.Read More
In this issue of Perspectives, adjective talks to the recent winner of the Tollman Award, Simphiwe Ndzube whose show Becoming is currently on show at WHATIFTHEWORLD, in Cape Town.Read More
Who is his teddy bear cocking a finger to? Why are his dwarves, dressed in blue and red short-sleeved t-shirts and white jockey underpants – a favoured dress code – hating and loving each other so? As for the artist dangling from a nail? The piece is called My Gallerist Made Me Do It. Really? Bullying aside, Ed Young owes too much here to Maurizio Cattelan. Then again the work is not just derivative, his works are not just facile copies, they come with scare quotes.Read More