Oliewenhuis
 
 

Temporary Exhibitions

Temporary Exhibitions 2018

in perpetuum by Beth Diane Armstrong, Standard Bank Young Artist  2017

7 June – 22 July 2018

Oliewenhuis Art Museum is hosting the Bloemfontein showing of the annual Standard Bank Young Artist 2017 – Visual Art exhibition. Beth Diane Armstrong was the winner of the coveted title last year and her sculptural exhibition, in perpetuum will be on show from 7 June until 22 July 2018. in perpetuum will be opened by Karen Brusch, Art Consultant and founder of the Free State Art, at 19:00 on Thursday, 7 June 2018. A walkabout of the exhibition will be conducted by the artist at 10:00 on Friday, 8 June 2018.

The title in perpetuum suggests something which is ongoing and everlasting. In the sense that Armstrong applies the term, it refers to negotiating an unremitting pull between the desire to be entirely overwhelmed and subsumed by a sculpture and the drive to resolve and contain the idiosyncratic challenges posed by it. A central ambition which continues to inform Armstrong's process is the translation of fleeting, abstract experiences into the permanence of a physically demanding material such as steel.

One of the leading contemporary South African sculptors of her generation, in perpetuum captures Beth Diane Armstrong's mastery of the medium. The exhibition accentuates her meticulous processes, her attention to detail and her astounding ability to effortlessly switch between intricate smaller works and imposing large-scale masses of steel. This body of work encompasses themes and motifs drawn from her entire career as a sculptor and marks a full-circle return to where it began, having received her Masters in Fine Art from Rhodes University in 2010.

Armstrong grapples with the ways in which bodies experience space and translate this experience into structures, both perceptual and physical. Beginning as thought experiments, the works evolve according to a set of parameters which the artist prescribes. Armstrong develops these parameters on the level of underlying structures (calculations, measurements) and through the higher level realisations of the works as sculptural structures, maintaining a synchronous relationship to both aspects.

The works continuously shift between two binaries. Recognisable forms such as trees and rhizomes served as metaphors for rootedness and adaption/reaction and are juxtaposed with elusive abstract arrangements of steel beams. Ideas of orientation and stability are contrasted with impressions of chaos and perplexity. Large-scale steel sculptures sit alongside delicate, meticulously constructed wire assemblages. Video footage - capturing the interplay between light and lens - continuously pulls in and out of focus. The expansive aesthetic idea of the sublime is contrasted with the contained resolution of the beautiful.

Taken as a whole, in perpetuum presents Beth Diane Armstrong's work as a continuously self-generating system driven by the interplay between density and looseness. The exhibition will be shown at Oliewenhuis Art Museum from 7 June until 22 July 2018.

Attendance of the opening event is free of charge. Oliewenhuis Art Museum is located at 16 Harry Smith Street, Bloemfontein and is open to the public from Monday to Friday between 08:00 and 17:00, and on Saturdays, Sundays and public holidays between 09:00 and 16:00.

For more information please contact Oliewenhuis Art Museum on 051 011 0525 (ext 200) or oliewen [at] nasmus [dot] co [dot] za.

 About the Artist

Currently living and working in Johannesburg, Beth Diane was born in South African in 1985. In 2010, she completed, with distinction, her Masters of Fine Art at Rhodes University. Rhodes University bought her BFA exhibition, Hibernation, for their permanent collection. Armstrong has had several solo exhibitions, and has partaken in a number of group shows and projects locally and internationally, as well as being included in various private and public collections. Some recent highlighted commissions include the completion of a large permanent public artwork Flag in Oostvoorne, in the Netherlands, commissioned by the Kern Kunst Westvoorne Foundation, and her most recent Page for National English Literary Museum, a 10-ton outdoor sculpture, in Grahamstown, South Africa. Armstrong was awarded the prestigious Standard Bank Young Artist Award 2017 – Visual Arts in South Africa for 2017.

About Standard Bank Young Artist Awards

The Young Artist Awards were started in 1981 by the National Arts Festival to acknowledge emerging, relatively young South African artists who have displayed outstanding talent in their artistic endeavours. These prestigious awards are presented annually to deserving artists in different disciplines, affording them national exposure and acclaim. Standard Bank took over the sponsorship of the awards in 1984, and has presented Young Artist Awards in all the major art disciplines over their 30-year sponsorship, as well as posthumous and special recognition awards. The winners feature on the main programme of the National Arts Festival, Grahamstown, and receive financial support for their festival participation, as well as a cash prize.


TOP UP INSIDE OUT featuring artworks by members of the artists' collective Ubuhle Bobuntu Arts

24 May – 1 July 2018

An exhibition entitled TOP UP INSIDE OUT featuring artworks by members of the artists' collective Ubuhle Bobuntu Arts and curated by Lehlohonolo Mkhasibe will be presented by Oliewenhuis Art Museum.

Based in Diepkloof, Soweto, this artists' collective consists of Lehlohonolo Mkhasibe, Mzie Gojo, Pauline Mazibuko, Virginia Ramovha, Victor Mofokeng, Nkululeko Majola Mahlangu, Thabo Molapo, Enoch Ndlovu, Bongani Khumalo, Thulani Zondo, Mighta Makhutle, Velaphi Nhlanhla, Tebogo Hamnca, Thembinkosi Sinalo Ntuli, Thomas Moremi.

In their reflection on one of the major global issues of our time, these twelve artists repurpose materials such as bread, rubber tires, match sticks, plastic, cow dung, extension hair and cans. They focus on green art and eco-logic as means to reduce the negative impact of wastefulness on the earth's eco-systems.

Ubuhle Bobuntu Arts is a registered non-profit organisation empowering youth with skills in art making, lifestyle and workshops in practical visual arts.

TOP UP INSIDE OUTwill be opened by Gordon Froud, prominent artist, curator, gallerist and senior lecturer in the Department of Visual Arts, Faculty of Art, Design, and Architecture, University of Johannesburg at 19:00 on Thursday, 24 May 2018 in the Reservoir, Oliewenhuis Art Museum. The walkabout of the exhibition will be conducted by the curator, Lehlohonolo Mkhasibe at 10:00 on Friday, 25 May 2018.

The Oliewenhuis Art Museum is located at 16 Harry Smith Street, Bloemfontein and is open to the public from Monday to Friday between 08:00 and 17:00, and on Saturdays, Sundays and public holidays between 09:00 and 16:00.

For more information please contact Oliewenhuis Art Museum at 051 011 0525 (ext 200) or oliewen [at] nasmus [dot] co [dot] za


AFRICAN UNITY: An exhibition celebrating Africa month is a unique project as the staff of Oliewenhuis Art Museum joined forces in curating an exhibition about African Unity.

This exhibition aims to encourage unity amongst all Africans. The exhibition advocates for peace, African pride and a celebration of Africa’s liberation. The exhibition comprises of artworks selected from the Permanent Collection of Oliewenhuis Art Museum which includes artworks by pioneering South African artists such as Jodi Bieber, Dumisani Mabaso, Alexis Preller and Nandipha Mntambo. The artworks chosen express the beautiful African landscape, an appreciation of women as well as the progress of Africa throughout colonialism, apartheid and segregation. Furthermore some of the selected artworks celebrate the diversity of African music and aim at a better socio-economic culture throughout the continent, while urging for the inclusion of the once marginalised individuals in attempts to mandate the realization of a more transformed Africa. 

The exhibition will beopened by Khotso Pudumo, Oral History Assistant at the National Museum, Bloemfontein followed by a dancing performance titled, Ingendo: Journeys by Totto Théogène Niwenshuti at 14:00 on Thursday, 17 May 2018.

Totto Théogène Niwenshuti is a survivor of the tragic Rwandan Genocide andfinds great consolation in dance. In his performance he conveys his story. Ingendo is about journeys of survival, healing, ubuntu and love in troubled times.

Entrance for this event is free of charge. Refreshments will be served. Please come dressed in your traditional attire.

The Oliewenhuis Art Museum is located at 16 Harry Smith Street, Bloemfontein and is open to the public from Monday to Friday between 08:00 and 17:00, and on Saturdays, Sundays and public holidays between 09:00 and 16:00.

For more information please contact Oliewenhuis Art Museum at 051 011 0525 (ext 200) or oliewen [at] nasmus [dot] co [dot] za



Best Before: Artist Margaret Nel explores complexities of female identity, age and abuse of power in challenging exhibition

An exhibition of South African artist Margaret Nel’s latest body of work, entitled Best Before, will be shown at the Oliewenhuis Art Museum from 19 April 2018 until 27 May 2018. The exhibition will be opened by Dr Nadine Lake, Programme Director and Lecturer in the Gender Studies Programme at the University of the Free State, at 19:00 on Thursday, 19 April 2018. A walkabout will be conducted by the artist at 10:00 on Friday, 20 April 2018.

Comprising 27 paintings completed between 2009 and 2018, Best Before confronts the viewer with three investigations of the same theme: cuts of meat, baked goods and fresh produce, all depicted on an oversized, visceral scale. While these representations of packaged consumer goods may certainly be interpreted as contemporary still life, their scale and candidness encourage the viewer to assess the works on a number of additional levels.

Throughout the series, Nel chooses to depict her subject matter in relation to a thin membrane of plastic wrap, a now-ubiquitous material that has been associated with the packaging of edible items since the mid-twentieth century. Represented as either intact (and therefore sterile) or breached (and thereby rendering its contents vulnerable to decay), this film becomes an interface between an outer and inner reality, and a means for Nel to explore how sexualisation, abjection and the abuse of power inform the female identity.

In her studies of baked goods, Nel uses processed confectionery – and the packaging that encases it – as a representation of the paradoxical power and vulnerability of female sexuality. Here, glazed frosting and piped cream immediately call to mind female genitalia or breasts, as in Cream Bun (2014) and Two Buns I (2014) respectively. The plastic wrap, while ostensibly serving to preserve its contents, in actuality offers minimal protection against eventual violation.

For Nel, this tension speaks to the notion of paradisus amissus, where innocence – particularly that of the girl child, is irrevocably lost. When considered from the perspective of recent revelations of sexual abuse and harassment within the American political and entertainment arenas, these works take on even greater topical significance.

In the process of exploring baked goods as a metaphor for female sexual objectification, degradation and assault, Nel also began investigating how this theme might relate to the aging female in particular. By documenting confectionery before and after the effects of decay set in, Nel not only touches on the modern preoccupation with artificially prolonging and enhancing female sexual desirability, but also the inevitable process of ageing and ultimate rejection of the aged female from society. “Best Before I and II are the result of my investigations. Here, the baked goods are encased in plastic wrap, which serves only as a temporary shield against eventual decomposition. So too the body continues with the process of decay and death,” Nel says.

Similarly, Nel’s explorations of raw meat serve to extract complex and contradictory responses from the viewer. The most visceral and challenging of the series, the still-bloodied cuts speaks of an earlier, unseen emotional or physical brutality, while the plastic and styrofoam serves to sanitise, commodify and even ritualise this violence.

Nel asserts that “many of these works use meat as a metaphor – in particular the juxtaposition of flesh before and after its protective sheath has been torn open. Slab I andII suggest physical violence that has led to death, the “slab” alluding to the mortuary table and post-death examination. They negotiate the nature of domestic abuse, which is a private type of an assault yet one which occurs universally, irrespective of class, age, race and even gender.”

This neatness of presentation also infers the ritualisation and mythologisation of flesh, especially on the African continent, and in particular, of the female body. As with her works depicting baked goods, many of the meat paintings are titled in reference to terminology used to infantilise, sexualise, undermine or objectify women.

The relationship between innocence and corruption is further demonstrated in Nel’s explorations of fresh produce, which perhaps represent the most subtle notes within the exhibition. Here too, bags of fruit are subjected to softening and eventual decomposition – often, within the very medium intended to prevent such processes. While works such as Bruised I may certainly be interpreted as contemporary renditions of Dutch vanitas paintings, they also powerfully express Nel’s concern with the covert nature of the abuse of power, whether sexual, emotional, physical or political.

Margaret Nel was born in 1945 in Johannesburg, and has been a practicing artist since 1970. She has held a number of solo exhibitions as well as participated in numerous group shows. Her work is represented in both corporate and public collections, including SASOL, ABSA, Rand Merchant Bank, the Universities of Stellenbosch, Pretoria and the Free State, as well as the Oliewenhuis Art Museum and Pretoria Art Museum, where she also recently presented a major retrospective.

Attendance of the opening event is free of charge. The Oliewenhuis Art Museum is located at 16 Harry Smith Street, Bloemfontein and is open to the public from Monday to Friday between 08:00 and 17:00, and on Saturdays, Sundays and public holidays between 09:00 and 16:00.


The South African Quilters Guild is very proud to present a Travelling Quilt Exhibition entitled Inspiration, showcasing a collection of quilt art that will leave viewers utterly inspired. The exhibition will be on shown at the Oliewenhuis Art Museum from 6 to 22 April 2018. These beautiful quilts are diverse in design, rich in the use of colour, fibre and threads, stitched with boundless creativity and imagination and blended together in harmony. The exhibition will also showcase the finished quilts from The Pan-African Friendship Quilt Challenge which invited quilters from different African countries to be ‘twinned’ with each other. Each set of quilters produced two quilts – each quilter working on her own quilt and then swapping with the other thus adding to the design and increasing the size.

The South African Quilters’ Guild was founded in 1989 at the 3rd National Quilt Festival held in Bloemfontein and has been the co-ordinating body of quilting in South Africa since then. The SAQG is the national guild of South Africa, a non-profit association with 11 regional guilds represented as well as other affiliated quilting groups.  

The Oliewenhuis Art Museum is located at 16 Harry Smith Street, Bloemfontein and is open to the public from Monday to Friday between 08:00 and 17:00, and on Saturdays, Sundays and public holidays between 09:00 and 16:00.

For more information please contact Oliewenhuis Art Museum at 051 011 0525 (ext 200) or oliewen [at] nasmus [dot] co [dot] za


Oliewenhuis Art Museum is pleased to present a solo travelling exhibition, the din of daily life… by acclaimed artist Arlene Amaler-Raviv.

Arlene Amaler-Raviv's artistic trajectory spans four decades of dedication and prolific output as evident in numerous exhibitions locally and internationally. She is a dedicated teacher of the arts. This artist voices the sounds of protest, lamentation, joy and quiet conversation. Her voice is singing, calling, longing, weeping and shouting in its engagement with the viewer. Her paintings track the movement of displacements, transitions and relocations while trying to anchor her Self in a world of flux and transition. For Amaler-Raviv, everything is 'terribly important' and intensely felt. This fragility and passion becomes her strength. She appears in her paintings at many different times, in many different guises.

Amaler-Raviv stated that; “I try to give a voice to the voiceless — to translate the din of our daily lives, through the painted mark. The archetypal figure, who is any person in survival mode, strides with purpose through my canvasses, repeating like a mantra:  keep going, keep walking, keep striving, keep hoping, keep overcoming, keep living. I have lived my life in this way; picking myself up, mending broken pieces and striding forward by painting, painting and painting. I have painted myself out of a corner so many times. The six panels of postcards, Africa meets Europe is a collection of images over 40 years, documenting my journey as a painter”. The artist cherishes the following quote by Pearl Primus in her notebook; “My life has been like travelling up a river. Every now and then I would hear singing around the bend and so around the bend I would go and become occupied with living”.

Arlene Amaler-Raviv was born in Johannesburg and received a Bachelor of Arts degree (Fine Arts) from the University of the Witwatersrand under the supervision of Robert Hodgins. In the 1970s she was involved in art education, workshops, teaching and teacher training programmes. Since 1979 she has held many solo exhibitions at Everard Read Gallery, Market Theatre Gallery and group shows locally and internationally. During the 1990s she lectured at the University of Pretoria, FUBA and at the Katlehong Art Center (BACA). In 1996 she lived in the Netherlands where she assisted in the curatorship of the exhibition of Africa meets Africaat the Museum of Ethnology, Rotterdam.

Amaler-Raviv moved to Cape Town in 1997 and was involved in numerous projects. These include a twenty meter sight-specific installation for the District Six Sculpture Project entitled Dislocation Relocation; large oil paintings on glass entitled Departurethat was exhibited at Mark Coetzee Fine Art and two collaborative exhibitions with photographer Dale Yudelman, namely Oneexhibited at the Association for Visual Arts and Where the Mountain meets the Cityexhibited at 232 Long Street.

Vodacom commissioned Amaler-Raviv to create an installation of seventeen oil paintings on aluminium in 2000. In 2002 Spier acquired a 2m x 2m portrait of Mandela for their collection. Many of her paintings and works hang in private collections around the world and publicly in major art collections in South Africa.

Bloemfontein is the first leg for the exhibition the din of daily life…, whichwill run from 22 February to 2 April 2018. Prior to the opening, renowned art lawyer, Toby Orford will present a talk at 17:30 in the Reservoir, Oliewenhuis Art Museum. The talk will include a general introduction to the interaction between art and law and how and when the different aspects of the structure known as art law works to benefit the modern art community as much as possible. 

Toby has BA, LLB and LLM degrees from the University of Cape Town and a Diploma in International Law from the University of Cambridge. Toby has practised maritime law for over 20 years in South Africa, the United Kingdom and Sweden – as a practising lawyer, consultant and in house legal counsel – involving arbitration disputes over the chartering of vessels and the carriage of cargo. Toby specialises in legal consultancy specialising in art and cultural property. Toby is based in Cape Town but his consultancy covers all of South Africa. Where appropriate, he works in conjunction with dedicated teams of local lawyers and other experts.

The opening will take place at 19:00 in the Main Building, Oliewenhuis Art Museum with Toby Orford as the opening speaker.  An informal walkabout will take place the next day at 10:00 on Friday, 23 February 2018, conducted by Arlene Amaler-Raviv.

After Bloemfontein, this exceptional exhibition will travel to The Melrose Gallery in Johannesburg where it will be on show from 13 April to 13 May 2018.

For more information please contact Oliewenhuis Art Museum on 051 011 0525 (ext 200) or oliewen [at] nasmus [dot] co [dot] za.


Conversations with my Father by Monique M. Pelser

 Annex Gallery, Oliewenhuis Art Museum

 8 February - 25 March 2018                       

Conversations with my Father is a continuous dialogue between Pelser and the objects, images, sound recordings and documents she inherited after her father’s death in 2010. He died of a rare motor neuron disease that rendered him unable to speak for the last year and a half of his life.

Looking at the disease metaphorically Pelser started to investigate ideas of trauma stored in the physical and political body.  Pelser’s paternal grandfather and father were both members of the South African Police (SAP).

In this work, the father figure stands in as a metaphor for patriarchy and by extension authority. The conversation is a working process where she turns the camera and her investigation onto her forefathers.  The act of scrutinising, cataloging, layering and manipulating is a process of digging up the past and questioning how authority is established. 

For more information please contact Oliewenhuis Art Museum at 051 011 0525 (ext 200) or oliewen [at] nasmus [dot] co [dot] za

 


 

Temporary Exhibitions 2017

The Nation Mourns: Umthi Uphamb' Inyanga (The medicine has tricked the medicine man)

Venue:  The Annex Gallery, Oliewenhuis Art Museum.

Date:  4 November 2017 – 28 January 2018

The Nation Mourns: Umthi Uphamb’ Inyanga (The medicine has tricked the medicine man) exhibitionis a thought provoking exhibition that is curated by Lydia Mphatja and Thapelo Ramateletse. This exhibition showcases a selection of exceptional artworks from the Permanent Collection of Oliewenhuis Art Museum. The exhibition is currently on display in the Annex Gallery, Main Building, Oliewenhuis Art Museum.

The exhibition aims to reinforce the principles that led to the creation of the South African Constitution[1], which was signed into law in 1996. Highlighting the promises that the government made to the citizens such as ‘improved quality of life for all people’, the exhibition serves to remind the citizens as well as the South African government of their responsibility to adhere to the principles laid out in the constitution.

The title of the exhibition, The Nation Mourns: Umthi Uphamb’Inyangi is a combination of two artworks. The artworks are by renowned South African artists Lucky Sibiya, UMABATHA:  The Nation mourns (from the Umabatha series of hand printed woodcuts), and Mirriam MazungulaUmthi Uphamb’Inyangi which translates to: The medicine has tricked the medicine man. The association found in both Sibiya and Mazungula’s work alludes to the current state of the South African nation,which is deteriorating at an alarming rate. Bearing in mind disturbing instances such as the Marikana massacre, Fees Must Fall Movement[2], numerous xenophobic attacks, the violation and brutal killings of the LGBTQ+ communities, gender based violence and violence against children.

The concept of a medicine man being tricked by his own medicine gives us a notion of humour, something that is deemed highly unlikely and therefore befitting.  With the use of both satire and demureness, the curators call, perhaps flippantly, on the nation to mourn the loss that is experienced every day; loss of morality, humanity, and responsibility. The use of satire and other humorous elements in the visual presentation of the exhibition serves to highlight the fact that many South Africans have become blasé when confronted with serious situations, with excessive use and dependency on social media being the most likely contributor to this attitude. What may seem funny on the surface ultimately masks the gravity of these situations. This analogy is emphasized by the use of artworks by illustrious South African artists such as Alexander Podllashuc, Eric Mbatha, Vulindlela Nyoni and Judy Woodbourne.  The exhibition also serves as an outcry to South African citizens or stark reminder of their humanity and their responsibility. It also encourages them to refer to the constitution as a guide and a means of attaining a peaceful coexistence amongst all who live in this country.

For more information please contact Oliewenhuis Art Museum at 051 011 0525 (ext 200) or oliewen [at] nasmus [dot] co [dot] za


[1]The Constitution of the Republic of South Africa is the supreme law of the country of South Africa. It was approved by the Constitutional Court of South Africa on the 4th of December 1996 and took effect on 4 February 1997.  The constitution provides the legal foundation for the existence of the Republic of South Africa, details the rights and dutiesof the citizens of the land, and designates the structure of the government. (https://www.gov.za/DOCUMENTS/CONSTITUTION/constitution-republic-south-af...).
[2]FeesMustFall refers to the student protest movement that began in October 2015 as a response to the increase in fees at South African universities,

Oliewenhuis Art Museum cordially invites you to the opening of the 2017 Phatshoane Henney New Breed Art Competition Exhibition.

The Phatshoane Henney New Breed Art Competition aims to celebrate a new breed of artist and showcase exceptional contemporary Free State art.

A selection of entries will be on show.

The exhibition will be opened by Sam Moleko, Director in the Commercial Department at Phatshoane Henney Attorneys at 19:00 on Thursday, 5 October 2017 in the main building of Oliewenhuis Art Museum.

For more information please contact Oliewenhuis Art Museum on 051 011 0525 (ext 200) or oliewen [at] nasmus [dot] co [dot] za.


The Department of Architecture at the University of the Free State annually hosts the prestigious Sophia Gray Memorial Lecture. This event at the end of August is a highlight on the architectural profession's calendar. The 29th Lecture will be presented by the firm Elphick Proome Architects on 31 August 2017.

You and your spouse / partner are cordially invited by the Department of Architecture, 
University of the Free State, to the

29th SOPHIA GRAY MEMORIAL LECTURE & EXHIBITION

Thursday, 31 August 2017

Kopanong Auditorium Kovsiekerk D F Malherbe Avenue, Bloemfontein
-29.105845, 26.188499

18:30 Arrival
19:00 Welcome, Memorial Lecture, Thanks

Oliewenhuis Art Museum
16 Harry Smith Street, Bloemfontein
-29.098647, 26.21983261

21:00 Opening of exhibition 

RSVP before 24 August 2017
(t) 051 401 2332 (f) 051 401 7139 pretoriusy [at] ufs [dot] ac [dot] za

 


Giidanyba (Sky Beings) by Tyrone Sheather

Dates: 16 July - 30 July 2017

Opening: 17:00 on Sunday, 16 July 2017

Venue: Oliewenhuis Art Museum (Front lawn)

Times: Mon – Fri: 09:00 – 20:00, Sat & Sun: 09:00 – 20:00

Giidanyba (Sky Beings) consists of seven figure-like sculptures, depicting nocturnal spirits that impart knowledge and guidance to the First Nation, Gumbaynggirr people of Australia. The Giidanyba transforms from unlit statues in the daytime to bright, shimmering beings in the evening. Emanating from within these spirit-like forms, are sound and light that are responsive to the movement of audiences. The structural components of the installation are made of fibreglass and steel while traditional ochres have been applied to the surface of the individual figures by Gumbaynggirr community members, under the direction of the artist.

Tyrone Sheather is an Australian artist of mixed heritage, belonging to the Gumbaynggirr people from the mid-north coast of New South Wales. His work aims to explore identity and to reveal, through a combination of traditional and contemporary media, knowledge and stories that have been passed down over centuries within the Gumbaynggirr Dreamtime. Sheather explains: “In the Dreaming (Yuludarla), the Hero-Ancestors made and transformed the landscape with their special powers of creation and destruction. Simulating a Gumbaynggirr rite of passage, Giidanyba symbolises these Spiritual Ancestors, as they descend from the Muurrbay Bundani (tree of life) in the sky, to support people throughout their cultural journey and to guide them into the next stage of their lives.”

Giidanyba is presented as part of a First Nations project by the Programme for Innovation in Artform Development (PIAD), in partnership with SITUATEArt in Festivals, Salamanca Arts Centre and Oliewenhuis Art Museum. Supported by the Australia Council for the Arts, project managed by Ainslie Macaulay and Emma Porteus and installed by Ed Horne.


Terugblik, a solo retrospective exhibition by Ben Botma

Dates: 18 July – 27 August 2017

Opening: 19:00 on Tuesday, 18 July 2017

Venue: Oliewenhuis Art Museum (Main Building)

Times: Mon – Fri: 09:00 – 17:00, Sat & Sun: 09:00 – 16:00

Ben Botma quotes Chuck Palahniuk…..

“The unreal is more powerful than the real. Because nothing is as perfect as you can imagine it. Because it's only intangible ideas, concepts, beliefs, fantasies that last. Stone crumbles. Wood rots. People, well they die.

But things as fragile as a thought, a dream, a legend, they can go on and on.”

Art, architecture, music, poetry - these are the manifestations of man's dreams, fears, spirituality, thoughts. In these works local artist Botma is searching for an underlying subconscious line between some of these cultural manifestations. Included in this exhibition will be a selection of works from his student days up to recent works, in a variety of media.


CARCERAL SPACES: ANTICIPATING THE SUBLIME…, by Marieke Kruger

Dates: 18 July – 20 August 2017

Opening: 18:00 on Tuesday, 18 July 2017

Walkabout: 11:00 on Wednesday, 19 July 2017

Venue: Oliewenhuis Art Museum (Reservoir)

Times: Mon – Fri: 09:00 – 17:00, Sat & Sun: 09:00 – 16:00

An exploration of the sublime through the power of suggestive drawing trace towards the transformation of the self and the other.

In her body of drawings the artist specifically explores the transformative power of suggestion as a means towards containing a certain presence which could lead to an experience of the sublime – specifically the awesome in drawing.  Kruger focuses on large scale portrait drawings of the self and the other (in this case, prison inmates with whom she interacts) and its particular relationship to space thereby creating a means through which the psychological and spiritual effect of the sublime in drawing is explored, as well as the drawing's subsequent transformative effect on the self and the other.

Marieke Kruger is currently reading and researching towards a proposed PhD study on the sublime and its transformative effects on the self and the other through the power of large scale suggestive drawing trace.

The Elements of Incarnation I-IV by Janna Kruger

The Elements of Incarnation I-IV is an exhibition of reinforced concrete sculptures accompanying the exhibition by Marieke Kruger in the Reservoir.

Janna Kruger employs the process of sculpting to distil and elucidate spiritual notions and influences affecting his life. He then consolidates these abstract findings into tangible monuments as 'beacons' of reminiscence, deliberation and/or instruction. He was the winner of the Sculpture category of the 2015/2016 PPC Imaginarium Awards.


 

Propitas, by Miné Kleynhans

Dates: 18 July – 20 August 2017

Venue: Oliewenhuis Art Museum (Annex Gallery)

Times: Mon – Fri: 09:00 – 17:00, Sat & Sun: 09:00 – 16:00

The artworks in this exhibition flirt with contemporary marketing and poke fun at ideas about property and consumer products. The commercial offer made by these works target prevalent attitudes, expectations and desires in the average middle class household in a satirical yet solitary way. The works play imaginatively with elements from the insurance - , security -, marketing - and spiritual industry by ways of the design of semi-commercial products with fictional pseudo-transcendental aspirations. The works speak thematically to, and about, human desires regarding cherishing, surety, significance and enchantment in commercial as well as domestic spheres. Miné Kleynhans is a local artist and final year Master of Fine Arts student at the University of the Free State. 

 


Paul Emmanuel:  Remnants 

25 May - 9 July 2017

Oliewenhuis Art Museum is proud to announce that acclaimed artist Paul Emmanuel will showcase his poignant solo exhibition Remnants, in the Reservoir at Oliewenhuis Art Museum from 25 May – 9 July 2017.

Following its showing in 2016 at Boston University’s 808 Gallery in Massachusetts, USA, the expanded Remnants exhibition will be presented for the first time in South Africa at Oliewenhuis Art Museum, Bloemfontein.

Remnants could be viewed as the aftermath of the third phase of Emmanuel’s ongoing Lost Men project – a series of site-specific, temporary, outdoor installations engaging with loss, memory, memorialization and public grief. These unique, once-off Lost Men ‘counter-memorials’ have been installed at sites in South Africa, Mozambique and France.

In July 2014, The Lost Men Francewas temporarily installed  adjacent to the Thiepval Memorial to the Missing of the Somme in northern France. This arresting, thought-provoking installation encapsulated Emmanuel’s continuing investigation into ‘lost men’ – this time, the fallen of the battlefields of World War I. The remains (or remnants) of the silk banners comprising this counter-memorial now form part of the exhibition Remnants,presented in  the Reservoir at Oliewenhuis Art Museum. 

The Lost Men France (2014) was a counter-memorial installed on a farm road adjacent to the enormous Thiepval Memorial that commemorates the 72,246 missing British and South African servicemen who died in the Battles of the Somme of the World War I between 1915 and 1918, with no known grave. White South African servicemen are memorialized on Thiepval Memorial, while Black South African servicemen are not. Contrastingly, The Lost Men France counter-memorial comprised five large silk banners printed with images of the artist’s body. The images display the names of French, German, South African and Allied servicemen painfully impressed into his skin, without reference to rank, nationality or ethnicity.

Emmanuel used his own body as his canvas onto which he impressed randomly selected names of the fallen from all nations. This imprinting process left painful marks on his skin. The artist’s imprinted, naked body and inflamed skin was then photographed and the resulting images were transferred onto the fragile and ephemeral banners made from pure silk. These banners were then suspended in an installation on a specific site adjacent to the imposing brick and mortar Thiepval Memorial, to hang in a series along either side of a farm road. The banners, with the images of Emmanuel’s impressed and bruised skin, presented a counter-memorial to the traditional Thiepval Memorial that commemorates those lost in this terrible conflict often referred to as “The war to end all wars”.

These delicate silk banners were exposed to the harsh climate of northern France from July – October 2014 and were reduced to shreds by the wind and rain, leaving behind only the torn and faded remains of the original installation, resonating with the shattered relics still buried under the Somme fields of grain. Remains of the bones of servicemen who fell on this battlefield are still dug up today by farmers ploughing their fields. 

For the exhibition opening on 25 May, the remnants of these banners are complemented by a series of new ethereal drawings, prints and video works by the artist.

“These ‘Remnants’ …” as Pamela Allara, researcher at the African Studies Center, Boston University, USA, states: “ … are powerful metaphors for physical and emotional suffering, a memorial to the sine qua non of war: the violation of the human body and the concomitant destruction of human decency”.

Paul Emmanuel is a renowned artist, living and working in Johannesburg. Currently he is working on The Lost Men USA and a new project titled Substance of ShadowsRemnants is presented courtesy of Boston University Art Galleries and project managed by Les Cohn of Art Source South Africa.

Paul Emmanuel: Remnants will be opened by André Croucamp at 19:00 on Thursday, 25 May 2017 in the Reservoir, Oliewenhuis Art Museum.

At 10:00 on Friday, 26 May 2017 Paul Emmanuel will present an informative interactive walkabout.

Entrance for both events is free of charge. For more information please contact Oliewenhuis Art Museum at 051 0110 525 (ext 200) or oliewen [at] nasmus [dot] co [dot] za


Between Darkness and Light: A Mid-Career Retrospective of the Photography of Jodi Bieber

18 May- 9 July 2017

The visual poetry and politics of humanity is the focus of photographer Jodi Bieber. I In a country like South Africa – with its  history of apartheid,  ambivalent transition to democracy, and  fraught position today – there is no greater opportunity to envision the effects of these three very different periods on the people that call this country home. Between Darkness and Light, Bieber’s mid-career retrospective, spans the years from 1993 to 2014. The exhibition includes photographs from pivotal projects, with works selected from both celebrated and rarely seen series. .

Photographs madein the period 1993 to 2004 explore the country of her birth; later works reflect on the intangible character of identity politics; and the most recent images challenge contemporary media stereotypes. Her visual language is distinctive in its fluidity and defies the rigid delimitations of photojournalism, documentary photography, and visual art.

Bieber writes that: “Through my projects I face the harshness and the resilience of the human spirit. I’ve learnt that we all have two sides and – depending on changing circumstances – one side might overshadow the other.”

JODI BIEBER: BIOGRAPHY

Jodi Bieber trained at the Market Photography Workshop and The Star newspaper. In addition to her national and international photojournalistic and documentary photography, she has worked on projects for non-profit organisations such as Médecins Sans Frontières. Her work has been published in three artistic monographs. Bieber has received a number of the world’s leading awards. Her iconic photograph of Bibi Aisha, a young mutilated Afghan woman, featured on the cover of Time magazine in August 2010, and she was awarded the 54th annual World Press Photo of the Year Award for this image. (Bieber had previously won nine such awards.) In 2009 she was announced as winner of the Prix de le l’Union Européene at the Rencontres de Bamako Biennale Africaine de la Photographie.  Her work has been shown internationally in numerous group exhibitions, and in about 20 solo exhibitions, and has been acquired by Iziko Museums, Johannesburg Art Gallery, Artur Walther Collection, Fondazione Fotografia, and the François Pinault Collection. Bieber has presented workshops in Finland, England, Nepal, Italy, Bangladesh, Chile, Spain, Turkey and Austriaand has lectured and mentored photographers at the Market Photography Workshop in Johannesburg.

Between Darkness and Light willbe opened by exhibition curator Brenton Maart, Head of the National Art Bank at 19:00 on Thursday, 6 April 2017, in the Main Building, Oliewenhuis Art Museum.

At 10:00 on Friday, 19 May 2017, Jodi Bieber will present an informative interactive walkabout.

Entrance for both events is free of charge. For more information please contact Oliewenhuis Art Museum at 051 0110 525 (ext 200) or oliewen [at] nasmus [dot] co [dot] za

 


Karoo Disclosure, a collaborative art project

6 April 2017 - 14 May 2017

Karoo Disclosure highlights the consequences of fracking on an ancient landscape

Karoo Disclosure is a multimedia, collaborative art project that focuses on the effects of shale gas exploration (fracking) on land, people and the environment, specific to the Karoo, a semi-desert region of South Africa. The Karoo Disclosure collaborators include artists working in performance, photography, costume, sound, video, installation and sculpture.

While considerable outcry and anti-fracking lobbying is taking place locally and globally, South Africa’s Minister of Mineral Resources Mosebenzi Zwane announced on 30 March 2017 that the government has given the go-ahead for shale gas development in the Karoo area based on available scientific evidence.

This inter-disciplinary art project explores notions of heritage and culture in the context of external economic and political drivers that threaten to change the landscape and the lives of the Karoo communities in unimaginable and irreversible ways.

Karoo Disclosure explores the landscape as a site of cultural meaning and highlights the narratives that are being obscured through this latest development. The government has failed to highlight the scientific evidence in research that points out the high risks to human health, social fabric, heritage, aesthetics and sense of place, not to mention biodiversity loss and the risks to water that would impact the agricultural economy of the Karoo. The Karoo is heavily reliant on ground water for human consumption, agriculture and eco-tourism.

Eight scientists from the National Museum in Bloemfontein also joined forces on the project to create a new installation for the Oliewenhuis Museum. The installation comprises objects, study skins, skulls and specimens from the Karoo region housed in the National Museum research collections. The Karoo includes high levels of biodiversity by global standards, including sensitive and unique ecosystems and species. The aridity of the Karoo makes these ecosystems sensitive to disturbance and active rehabilitation is often met with poor success.

The installation responds directly to the shale gas research report through visually mapping the impacts and potential losses in the Karoo; from the unique Karoo fossils and landscape through to social fabric, sense of place and history of the Khoi-San. Fracking in the Karoo could be another moment in history where human intervention has eradicated vulnerable species and irreversibly changed the cultural history of the land.

The risks are laid out in black and white. The legacy fracking will leave on the Karoo landscape is set to be one of human greed at the expense of human wellbeing and environmental degradation. The trade-off for cheap gas that may contribute a few billion rands to the South African economy, not directly benefitting the Karoo communities, will result in an irreplaceable loss of biodiversity and habitat. The social and environmental impacts are potentially devastating.

The CSIR has already demonstrated that 83% renewable energy mix by 2050 is not only feasible, but it is also the least costly option. Not only can renewable energy be put in place faster than coal, nuclear or gas, it can also provide cheaper electricity and is cleaner than all other options. South Africa can have 100% of its electricity needs provided by renewable energy. 

The Karoo Disclosure exhibition will be complemented by selected artworks from the Permanent Collection of Oliewenhuis Art Museum.

Karoo Disclosure was opened by Professor Lucius Botes, Trustee of the Karoo Development Foundation. This was followed by a live music performance of the Karoo Disclosure: Soundscapes / Volume 1 digital album, presented by Maxim Starcke and Lisa Bauer at 19:00 on Thursday, 6 April 2017 in the Main Building, Oliewenhuis Art Museum. This album utilises Bauer’s voice, violin, scrap-metal- and found sound percussion, together with Starcke’s field recordings of the natural soundscape of the area, all recorded onsite at Doornberg Farm near Nieu-Bethesda. This first volume is a collection of digitally arranged, improvised and composed musical sound art pieces. It will be available to download at www.karoodisclosure.bandcamp.com where one can find more information about the sounds and recording process involved.

Collaborating Artists: Deborah Weber, Damien Schumann, Elgin Rust, Hendrik Dudumashe, Gina Waldman, Jeannette Unite, Margaret Stone, Maxim Starcke, Michelle Liao, Lisa Bauer, Tom Glenn, Peet van Heerden, Paula Kingwill.

Follow us @KarooDisclosure on facebook and twitter.

Collaborating Departments and scientists from the National Museum Bloemfontein:

Dawie de Swardt, HOD: Ornithology Department,
Dr Nico Avenant, HOD: Department of Mammalogy,
Shiona Moodley, HOD: Rock Art,
Sudré Havenga, HOD: Collections Management Department (Humanities) & Library,
Elize Butler, Collections Manager: Karoo Vertebrate Palaeontology,
Dr Lloyd Rossouw, HOD: Department of Archaeology,
Jan Andries Neethling, Museum Scientist: Arachnology Department,
Dr James Brink, HOD: Florisbad Quaternary Research Department. 

The entire Oliewenhuis Art Museum team.

Advisor: Surina Esterhuyse, Lecturer at the Centre for Environmental Management, University of the Free State.

Partners: Oliewenhuis Art Museum, National Museum, National Arts Council, PhotoHire, Doornberg Guest Farm, PrintArt, Sinamatella, Modern Art Projects (MAP)

For more information please contact Oliewenhuis Art Museum at 051 0110 525 (ext 200) or oliewen [at] nasmus [dot] co [dot] za


Paradisus (Deperditum), a solo travelling exhibition by Christiaan Diedericks   18 February - 26 March 2017

Oliewenhuis Art Museum is pleased to present a solo travelling exhibition by Christiaan Diedericks. This exhibition, Paradisus (Deperditum), is seen as Diedericks’ mid-career solo exhibition that not only showcases a new body of works, but also includes a few older drawings and graphic works.

According to A Latin Dictionary by Lewis & Short (1879), the English definition of the Latin word "paradisus" is "paradise or the garden of Eden" and in the online Oxford Latin Dictionary (1982 - OLD) the English definition of the Latin word "deperditum" is "that which is permanently lost".

The title chosen for this exhibition is thus derived from the alarming fact that our ecosystem is severely disrupted, the financial system increasingly uncontrollable and the geopolitical structure has recently begun to appear as unstable, as it has always been uneven. This triple crisis infuses doubt and inspires reflection about our basic assumptions, as much as inflaming cultural debates and provoking dogmatic entrenchments. History, it seems, is moving rapidly beyond its all too hastily proclaimed end. As a serious contemporary artist, Diedericks is continually, within himself and through his creative output, seeking answers for alarming issues.

In light of the above, Paradisus will focus on the resurgence of sincerity, healing, hope, romanticism, affect, and the potential for grand narratives and universal truths in the world. In its most basic essence this exhibition deals with healing as the artist is currently fascinated by concepts dealing with healing and modes of escape, both physical and mental. The Latin word "Injuriae" could be translated into English as "injury, injustice, wrong doing, offence, insult, abuse or sexual assault". In his creative work Diedericks is therefore trying to both expose and find solutions for this alarming reality - elixirs to heal this injury to our planet as well as the human race in general.

Diedericks is a South African artist, currently working and residing in Cape Town. This extremely talented artist received a Bachelors degree in Fine Arts (cum laude) from the NorthWest University (NWU) in 1992, and a Masters degree in Fine Arts (cum laude) from the University of Pretoria during 2000. As a meticulous printmaker, Diedericks refers to himself as a professional artist, educator and creative process navigator.

He has exhibited extensively throughout Southern Africa, as well as internationally. His work has been exhibited in the USA, Japan, Finland, Spain, Germany, Turkey, Poland, Belgium, England, Sweden and France, where he worked, as artist in residence, at the Cité Internationale des Arts in Paris on nine different occasions since 1994. Diedericks also worked in New York after receiving the prestigious Ampersand Foundation Fellowship in 2006, where his work was exhibited to critical acclaim at the Gallery 5+5 in Brooklyn in December 2007, receiving outstanding reviews in the New York Blade newspaper. 

After Bloemfontein, this exceptional exhibition will travel to The Melrose Gallery in Johannesburg where it will be on show from 8 April to 8 May 2017.


Temporary Exhibitions  2016


  #AMANDLA![Re]form,Debate,[Re]dress? curated by Tshegofatso Seoka   1 December 2016 - 12 February 2017 (Main Building)

The exhibition #AMANDLA![Re]form,Debate,[Re]dress?aimed to challenge and encourage viewers to develop conversations and debates about Resistance Art and the visual representation of resistance in South Africa during apartheid and post-apartheid. Sourced from the Permanent Collections of various prestigious South African art museums and galleries such as Oliewenhuis Art Museum, William Humphreys Art Gallery, Unisa Art Gallery, Johannesburg Art Gallery, Everard Read and Legacy Art Projects, the selection of artworks reflected contemporary representations of visual resistance by emerging as well as established South African artists and photographers. Included in the exhibition were traditional ‘Resistance Art’ artworks by William Kentridge, Dumeli Feni, Julian Motau and Norman Catherine as well as contemporary artworks by artists such as Asanda Kupa, Ayanda Mabulu, Blessing Ngobeni, Michael Selekane and Setlamorago Mashilo, with the intent to visually explore concepts such as Traditional vs. Contemporary representations of ‘Resistance’, ‘Resistance and identity formation’ as well as ‘Land and Space in South African representations of Resistance’.


  Phatshoane Henney New Breed Art Competition          20 Oct 2016 - 27 November 2016 (Main Building)

The Phatshoane Henney New Breed Art Competition aims to celebrate a new breed of artist and showcase exceptional contemporary Free State art. The winning artworks and a selection of entries were on show.