Dynamic exhibition by six visual artists

2010-07-01 00:00

AMANDLA – Our Voices is an exhibition of work by six artists who offer a visual record of South Africa, past and present. It can be seen in the ­Menzi Mchunu Gallery at the Bat Centre in Durban until July 16.

Using everything from paintings to mixed-media and photography, ­Zamani Makhanya, Sifiso Kamkame, Thami Jali, Lindelani Ngwenya, ­Langa Mangwa, Paul Sibisi and Rafs Mayet aim to use their work to create a more humane society.

Most of the artists share a working space in a visual art studio in Cato Manor and all continue to draw inspiration from their KwaZulu-Natal home.

One of the artists taking part, Jali, said his art was about reminding ­people about township life by drawing old township houses and the streets. “This will help the future generations to understand the history and the background of township life,” he said.

Makhanya’s art also depicts township life and more specifically the fact that most of South Africa’s football legends come from the townships and started playing football in the streets. “The aim of this [my work] is to show the tourists who will be visiting the country during the World Cup the background of our football stars, because most of the tourists will not get a chance to visit townships,” he added.

Both Kamkame and Mangwa use their work to celebrate their heritage and culture, while Ngwenya has opted to celebrate the joy and unity among the citizens of South Africa thanks to the World Cup.

Lastly, Mayet is using the exhibition to pay tribute to South Africa’s musical heroes, including the late Busi ­Mhlongo, honouring the contribution they made towards the freedom we now have as a nation. “Most musicians in this country do not get respect while they are alive — we only ­remember them when they die, which is very wrong,” the photographer says. Also on show are Mayet’s images of life in Warwick Triangle.

• THE Bat Centre is an art ­development and community centre located within the small Craft Harbour off Durban’s Victoria Embankment.

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