NMMU’s “fantastic” two-week feast for the eyes

AUGUST 1, 2016

Art lovers can look forward to a two-week visual art treat, with the “Fantastic” art exhibition opening at the Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University’s Bird Street Art Gallery on August 1. 

The exhibition, hosted by the NMMU Department of Visual Arts in conjunction with the University of Cape Town’s Michaelis Art Gallery, will run from August 2 to August 18.

Curated by art historian Dr Nomusa Makhubu and fine artist Nkule Mabaso, the exhibition features work by artists including Pamela Phatsimo Sunstrum, Zina Saro-Wiwa, Aida Muluneh and Dineo Bobape.

With terms such as ‘supernatural’, ‘magic’ and ‘fetish’, the visual arts showcase brings together a diverse mix of African artists using photography, illustration, animation and video to illustrate the fantastic.

NMMU art and design principal lecturer Mary Duker said: “The exhibition, Fantastic, seeks to re-ignite critical thought about the fantastic and considers it to be one of the crucial ways of comprehending the contemporary complexity in which uneven international economic and cultural relations contribute to the bizarre realities of contemporary life.

“Drawing inspiration from writers such as Ben Okri, this exhibition brings together contemporary artwork that has engaged with the fantastic as a concept that must be used discursively.”

Opening the exhibition, titled Fantastic, tonight will be Red Location Art Gallery director Uthando Budaza. The idea behind the exhibition stems from Dr Makhubu’s doctoral research, with work selected from artists who explore the realm of the fantastic in their art.

Dr Makhubu will be in town on August 10 and will conduct a public walkabout of the exhibition. The exhibition is open daily between 9:30am and 3:30pm, with the exception of weekends.


CAPTION: NMMU arts masters students Ilse Vomer and Siyabonga Ngaki showing off some of the artwork on display at the two-week long Fantastic art exhibition at NMMU’s Bird Street Gallery.