Monday, April 23, 2012

Curators in South Africa

Even though the making of exhibitions has been taking place in South Africa and the world since way back curatorship as we know it today and as a field of study  has only  been making its way in South Africa in the recent years. However the challenges there seems to be curators on the rise who do amazing work. Found this article in the Mail&Guardian on 6 curators working in South Africa.  Here is a few quotes that struck me as interesting reflections on images, curatorship also reflecting specifically in a Southern African context.

Perhaps because of the digital age in which we live, people have become desensitised to an image unless it is “hypersensational”.  Thato Mogotsi
The curator's role, she says, "should be more about mediation, which some artists are resistant to, but also about facilitating access to work and getting a deep understanding of the works and artists who make them — and also trying to ­create an environment where other people can access that too". Anthea Buys
 "The curated thing is an utterance and there needs to be a response to that, which is what I have found is quite frustrating about curating here -- that there is very seldom a serious critical response in a public forum." Anthea Buys
"Dutch artists are struggling to articulate a space where art can be political, because the artist is free to have it not mean anything, whereas here I find the opposite," she said. She then positioned the question closer to home: "Can [Southern African] art be useless? Does it have the freedom to be that way?"  Clare Butcher

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