New retail gallery at KZNSA

A sneak peek at some of the work which will be available at the KZNSA’s new Park Contemporary Gallery in Glenwood, Durban. Picture above and below by Niamh Walsh-Vorster.


AFFORDABLE, bespoke original art and collectables will be on offer in Durban from mid-August within the province’s foremost contemporary art gallery, the KZNSA in Glenwood.

The vision of the Park Contemporary Gallery is to offer work by  local art-makers – both respected “names” and emerging talent – and retail their work to shoppers and decorators on an ongoing basis.

The decision to transform what was the Park Gallery into a retail space is to further endorse the gallery’s focus of supporting local artists and providing them with a valuable platform to display and sell their work, says a spokesman.

It is also part of the ongoing process of restructuring and transformation to ensure the continued relevance and sustainable future of the visionary, 112-year-old KwaZulu-Natal Society of Arts (KZNSA) Gallery, an ever-changing society and a recessionary global environment.

“We have an astonishing array of art-makers in our province, who don’t always find appropriate and reputable retail outlets,” explains the KZNSA’s Angela Shaw. “Our commitment is to support our artists and keep them earning a viable living in Durban, and to provide interesting options for shoppers, decorators and architects to find the perfect artwork for their home or project.”

To this end, the gallerists have identified artists working in a variety of media: painting, photography, prints, illustrations, contemporary digital work and collectable objets d’art.

The team has invested considerable research, thought and care into the mix of artists. In many instances the artists chosen have been identified as being on the cusp of being snapped up by the mainstream national and international galleries.

Art set for Durban’s new Park Contemporary Gallery.

A press release states that Shaw is excited by the mix of artists whose work will be on display, and about sharing their work with a local audience before it makes the transition from affordable art to investment art.

These exciting new artists will share the bill with some of the industry’s landed gentry: such as prints by the late Barry Truter and Isaac Sithole, Walter Battiss reproduction prints and Andrew Verster original drawings.

Artists in the gallery include: Sthenjwa Luthuli, Jeannie Kinsler, Miranda Hendrieta Crooks, Simanga Zondo, Nindya Tricam, Bonfece Cele, Nikhil Tricam, Derrick Nxumalo, Sam Cross, Sean Simons, Ann-marie Nason, Kevin Mbonambi, Wonder Buhle Mbambo, Angela Buckland, Mandisa Buthelezi, Sarah Lovejoy, Joseph Manana, Frank Nthunya, Phumlani Nyawo, Hlengiwe Dube, Obed Zulu, Dane Stops, Mthobisi Maphumulo, Nhlanha Chonco, Everaldo Matonse, Sibusiso Duma, Corne Eksteen, Khulekani Cele, Ezekiel Mabote and Ntutuko Buthelezi.

The popular KZNSA Shop will continue to provide quality local products and gifts under the experienced eye of Gloria Hoff and Lucky Tsotetsi. The Park Contemporary Gallery will become a companion retail space for collectable art within the KZNSA Gallery.

The work will vary from R200 to R20 000 – and everything in-between. The Park Contemporary Gallery will also offer a selection of affordable frames – offering a prêt-a-porter type service of being able to select a frame for the chosen work on site and to walk away with a framed piece.

“We want to make it as easy, affordable and comfortable for both the buyer and the seller – we are the space where the maker and the market can meet,” says Shaw.

The Park Contemporary Gallery is operational within the KZNSA Gallery: 166 Bulwer Road, Glenwood, Durban. It will be formally opened on Thursday, August 24. For more information phone  (031) 277 1705.

BILLY SUTER reports that affordable, bespoke original art will be on offer in Durban from mid-August at a new contemporary gallery within the KZNSA Gallery in Glenwood. … More New retail gallery at KZNSA

Art sale and works by Mulla

A work by Melody French, titled Beneath, on show at artSpace Durban as part of the Winter Sale exhibition.


THE Winter Sale exhibition, featuring works by Lara Mellon, Grace Kotze, Melody French and Sibusiso Duma, is now running until August 9 at Durban’s artSpace Gallery, 3 Millar Road, off Umgeni Road.

Thereafter, a new exhibition, The You & I  by Ganjatun Mulla, will be presented for two weeks, from August 11 to 24.

 The You & I is described as a dynamic idea evolving over time in relation to how events and experiences can shape us, and how we can counter-shape the way we experience the experience.

Mulla is best known for her expressive artistic techniques in compelling visual illustrations of her homeland and cultural roots.

Ganjatun Mulla’s The Building, a 2011 oi on canvas

She is of Omani and Persian decent but was born and raised in Tanzania before moving to Dubai and later on to South Africa.

She has spent the most part of her life in silence, communicating solely through her art, and believes in the empowerment of women and their struggle for independence.

Mulla, who currently lives in Zimbali, says her passion for art derives from the works of the surrealist painter Salvador Dali, with whom she likens her philosophical view of the world; a world that is only as real as it appears.

She is quoted as saying: “We live in the image of who we want to become, not of who we’ve become. In so doing, we lose sight of the lessons from the past, the beauty of the present and the opportunities of the future.”

Her art has become a means of expressing this doctrine and to live each day with a sense of optimism and ambition.

BILLY SUTER reports on a Winter Sale exhibition now at Durban’s artSpace Gallery, off Umgeni Road. He also reports on a new exhibition, by Ganjatun Mulla, which opens there soon. … More Art sale and works by Mulla

Art both playful and sombre

Wees Gegroet/Greetings by artist Bronwyn Katz.


ELEVEN young black women living and working in Cape Town, Johannesburg and Botswana, and devoted to performance art, installation, video art, photography and other media, have united to present a topical exhibition in Durban soon.

Titled iQhiya, which is also the name of the collective, the exhibition has been seen Athens, Greece, and in Kassel, Germany. It is scheduled to open at Durban’s park-side KZNSA Gallery in Glenwood on Wednesday, July 26, and run until August 13.

At the core of the group are shared personal and professional experiences that help shape each individual artist through various projects and exhibitions, says a spokesman.

iQhiya features work by Bonolo Kavula, Matlhogonolo Charity Kelapile, Bronwyn Katz, Matlhogonolo Pinky Mayeng, Thulile Gamedze, Lungiswa Gqunta, Asemahle Ntlonti, Thandiwe Msebenzi, Sethembile Msezane, Sisipho Ngodwana and Buhlebezwe Siwani. The artists have used a variety of media: digital, print and sculpture.

Their joint statement explains: “Our works speak individually and collectively about voids, tensions and histories; lingering between the materiality of everyday existence, and the imaginative, fantastical futures where one might be free.

“We have been working profoundly in our personal capacities, with each artwork speaking volumes individually and powerfully as a collective: probing and creating debates surrounding why, as black women, we only become relevant as a collective voice.”

The artists have emerged in a time where there are contested notions of the roles of gender and tradition within contemporary South Africa, where the centre of power is no longer solely defined by masculinity. As a set of emerging artists, they are determined to extend their practice to a broader audience, says a spokesman.

iQhiya – directly translated, meaning a head covering or headband – seems to equally reveal and conceal elements of black female-ness, the spokesman adds.

There is an intergenerational connection between those that wrap their heads – an ancient inequality that targets black women at the intersections of their race and gender – and this potent violence continues to unfold and unfurl in newer and more clever ways in the contemporary era, it is stated in a press release.

“We exist in a space of tension, which parallels that of iQhiya – a signifier of both strength and burden, with the daily realities we face as young black women. The practice of the collective, iQhiya, therefore, is gestural; it is an action that asserts our presence through articulating our own narratives.”

The work produced by the collective is said to be at once playful and sombre. It  tells stories of childhood, the future, and stories of the often veiled black female imagination.

The artists are to host a public walkabout, to enlighten interested parties about their work, at 9am on Thursday, July 27, and again at 9am on Saturday, July 29.

There will also be a KZNSA Lab Talk at 6pm on Thursday, July 27, with some of the exhibiting artists Qhiya would like to invite creative women to participate in this seminar at the KZNSA Gallery.

The seminar seeks to create a space of sharing, discussion and reflection, which advocates the engagement for women and their professional practice.

Through the creation of this space of visibility the seminar hopes to contribute to the empowerment of women voices, as well as to promote interdisciplinary networks between women.

The seminar will take the form of a fish bowl discussion and everyone will be free to contribute. An RSVP is essential for the Lab Talk. Phone 031 277 1705.

BILLY SUTER reports that a group of 11 women have united to present a topical exhibition in Durban soon. They have used a variety of media: digital, print and sculpture. … More Art both playful and sombre

All at sea with 32 artists


A work by Darryl Houghton on view at the Sea Level exhibition at ArtSpace Durban in Millar Road, off Umgeni Road.


DURBAN has two new art exhibitions to visit, among them a new display that opens today (July 1) and runs until July 20 at ArtSpace Durban at 3 Millar Road, off Umgeni Road.

Thirty-two invited artists will be exhibiting miniature artworks there in an exhibition titled Sea Level, where the brief was for creativity to follow its own disciplines.

Among artists with works on display are Anthea Martin, Catherine Stempowski, Pam Benporath, Megan Bonnetard, Marianne Meijer, Camilla Kinnear, Sfiso ka Mkame, Zamani Makhanya and Jane Bishop.

Also featured are Estelle Hudson, Stella Beth Peat, Darryl Houghton, Hermine Spies, Lorraine Wilson, Odette Tolksdorf, Lesley Magwood Fraser, Deanne Samson, Jannie van Heerden, Mariek Petzer, Steffi Steffen, Deidree Maree, Chris Reabow, Pauline Maurer, Morgan Coakley, Denise Hill and Penny Brown – as well as  Pascale Chandler, Heidi Shedlock, Anne-Marie Nason, Laurelly Allaway, Grace Kotze, Nicole Pletts and Ewok.

Sea Level has been described as an exhibition of artworks that celebrate Durban – from rockpools at Umdoni, to sea urchins, surfers and sea bathing on the Bluff;  to barn swallows in the sky.

A wonderful variety of mediums are used – oil, acrylic, watercolour, prints and embroidered fabric – and also on display are fascinating miniature rooms created by Pam Bonnetard and miniature food by Morgan Coakley.

Sunrise, a work by Pam Benporath.

The Durban July horse race is noted with a Blue Filly series painted by Pascale Chandler.

Opening at Durban’s KZNSA Gallery in Glenwood, alongside Bulwer Park, at 5.30pm on Tuesday, July 4, is the Sasol New Signatures KZN Submissions exhibition. It will be on show until July 16 in the gallery’s Main and Mezzanine Galleries.

During this time, judges will travel from across the country to review works by KwaZulu-Natal artists on display and select work for final judging in Pretoria.

The final round of judging, when winners are chosen, takes place at the Pretoria Art Museum in August. Works are judged individually, based on the concept, use of material, quality of craftsmanship and the skill demonstrated.

The winners will be announced on August 30 at a gala event, after which the winning works will be displayed at the Pretoria Art Museum, from August 31 to October 8.

The winner will collect R100 000 and have a solo exhibition at next year’s exhibition, and the runner-up will win R25 000. The five merit award-winners will receive R10 000 each.

Zyma Amien, the 2016 winner, will hold her first solo exhibition within the official exhibition at the Pretoria Art Museum.


BILLY SUTER reports on two new Durban art exhibitions worth visiting – one of miniature works by 32 artists, the other showcasing KZN entries for the Sasol New Signatures competition … More All at sea with 32 artists

Morrison’s colourful trajectory


A work by Jennifer Morrison titled Undergrowrth.


ABSTRACT paintings primarily concerned with colour, scale, texture and form are at the heart of Trajectory, a new exhibition by Jennifer Morrison that opens in the main and mezzanine sections at Durban’s KZNSA Gallery in Brand Road, Glenwood, on Tuesday, June 13,

Running until July 2, the exhibition by the UK-based artist shows that although she has lived in London for more than two decades, the colours of South Africa have never left her – and remain a central influence in her work.

Artist Jennifer Morrison.

Morrision is interested in weighing accident against deliberation, precision and control against playfulness and abandon. Whether it is a plant or clouds, or smudges on a wall, these can all serve as inspiration for her, and act as a starting point for a painting.

The large works of the exhibition explore the medium of oil paint and seek to rely on the intuition of the artist in the making of the works and on the person who views them, says a gallery spokesman.

The experience of making the works is based on unconscious filters, values, past experience and knowledge, the spokesman adds.

“The paintings raise the issue of the viewer’s expectation of paintings, the need of some to see it perform as a narrative space within which the image and meaning can unfold. Finding meaning is not a primary concern for the artist. The visual impact and experience is paramount. Her paintings are devoid of content or narrative which precludes any single meaning or view,” the spokesman explains.

Morrison wants the viewing of her paintings to be a rich experiential encounter. For the artist, painting is about exploring the invented object in front of her. The formal qualities of abstract painting are significant not in themselves but as part of a work’s expressive message.

“Morrison is interested in the literalness of painting, of comprehending a work in a literal and experiential sense.  She sees it as a kind of honesty. It is also about having faith in not knowing, in being confounded, in doubt.

“Abstract art accepts the permanent uncertainties and pluralities that come with its territory. With painting, as with other things, you’re always losing possibilities by the choices you make. Morrison feels this to be a very exciting thing.”

Jennifer Morrison’s Beckon.


Jennifer Morrison’s Barrage.

BILLY SUTER reports that abstract paintings primarily concerned with colour, scale, texture and form are at the heart of “Trajectory”, a new Durban exhibition by Jennifer Morrison. … More Morrison’s colourful trajectory