ACosta Cartaz

The Kulungwana Gallery is hosting an exhibition of art and various art objects from the private collection of Alda Costa. The exhibition will run until the end of June.

This presentation allows visitors to follow a part of the career of the museum expert and historian who has bult up this collection out of interest and fascination in the arts and objects of art that were apparent from an early age. The pieces and objects of art that she found and acquired during the course of her career mark out this profession, which brought her into contact with the range of artistic practices throughout the length and breadth of the country. This exhibition also affords us a glimpse of her world and of the relationships she has formed and maintains with local artists and those who have moved abroad.

Alda Costa poses a series of questions, which include the following:
"How does one start collecting? Why does one begin buying works of art? How does someone like myself become part of this history?"

This exhibition coincides with the publication of the book "Arte e Artistas em Moçambique: Diferentes Gerações e Modernidades" (Art and Artists in Mozambique: Different Generations and Variants of Modernity) – this is the fourth in the series Kulungwana being published in the Marimbique imprint.

As the title suggests, the book deals with the different periods in local artistic production, mentioning the people involved and the context in which it took place, the materials and techniques employed, as well as new forms and trends followed by Mozambican artists.

Curated by Alda Costa & Mariana Camarate.

The exhibition will run from 29 May to 28 June.

Blue on Blue Cartaz

In October artists Berry Bickle and Marjorie Wallace present the exhibition "Blue on Blue".

Yves Klein made BLUE famous as IKB. In May 1960, Klein deposited his patent for the paint formulation under the name of International Klein Blue (IKB). The numbered Monochrome Paintings continued from 1959 to the end of his life. His innovation was to make the color blue the same color brightness and intensity as dry pigment saturating the process so the visual experience has no beginning or ending as he wanted to create, in his words, “a landscape of freedom “. In 1957, the year Marjorie Wallace was born, Yves Klein was placing blue in the void zones of the immaterial, blue as IKB again and again and again. Graduated from Michaelis School of Art in Cape Town, Marjorie Wallace is a talented ceramicist. She produces fine porcelain objects inspired by the traditional baskets that remind her of her youth, of which she scrapes, compresses and carves with drawings and linear designs. In a country where supply and resources are a constant problem, Marjorie Wallace opens her pottery to other ceramcists and trains young crafters.

Blues as in the musical form of rhymed narrative ballads, Berry Bickle has struck a Blue Note and as with the musical genre that possesses characteristics of lyrics and instruments Berry Bickle’s Blue Note is visual narratives photographically composed. Fine layers of fabric and diffused light are the sediment of memory wrapping the objects and then relating them to the body placing them close to the skin, as a danger within corporal vulnerability, as feminine with masculine wrapped in the same fate. Exploring issues of race, psychological violence, power, territory, history, memory and exile, Bickle raises questions about submission versus control, tradition versus modernity, and the local versus the global. By playing with subjectivity Bickle turns set ideas upside down and appeals to our imagination and to our senses, She touches on rituals to emphasize the meaning of principles identifying and cementing together the members of a community. She addresses their souls and spirits, transforming social codes into allegories of a shared alienation, as if this process was a way to create armor that could carry memory and transcend history.

The exhibition opens on 02 October and can be visited until 01 November 2014.

Roger Ballen Cartaz

I have been shooting black and white film for nearly fifty years now. I believe I am part of the last generation that will grow up with this media. Black and White is a very minimalist art form and unlike color photographs does not pretend to mimic the world in a manner similar to the way the human eye might perceive. Black and White is essentially an abstract way to interpret and transform what one might refer to as reality. My purpose in taking photographs over the past forty years has ultimately been about defining myself. It has been fundamentally a psychological and existential journey.
If an artist is one who spends his life trying to define his being, I guess I would have to call myself an artist”. ROGER BALLEN

Psychology Geology and Photography. The three forces that influenced Roger Ballen from a teenager when his mother worked as an editor at Magnum Photo Agency to studying psychology at the University of California, and later a PhD geology at the Colorado School of Mines, specialising in Mineral Economics.

Born in New York, Ballen was originally drawn to South Africa to work as a geologist, but photography became is passion and South Africa his fasiniaction and subject for the next 30 years of his career. He has been based in Johannesburg since the 1980s.

In the late 1980s and early 1990s Ballen looked at South Africa with a primarily politically and socially oriented photojournalistic approach .He traveled to remote rural towns and photographed impoverished white communities This approach at the height of Apartheid South Africa’s white domination showed marginal, vulnerable and isolated white communities. reminiscent of the images of Dorothea Lange in the Dust Bowl of the American South suffering the effects of the Great Depression. Platteland: Images From Rural South Africa published in 1994 and Outland published in 2001 are of his preliminary work in South Africa,

From the marginal and almost invisible white rural communities of South Africa, Ballen’s investigations on the fringes of society followed the urban margins of Johannesburg where, isolated individuals and animals all mixed in living conditions on the crumbling edge of what was the breakdown of the control of the Apartheid segregation. Ballen penetrated this community who lived in the abandonment of the edge of the mining industry and the powerful images were published in his subsequent books Shadow Chamber (2005) and Boarding House (2009).

On “Asylum”, from which a selection of his contemporary works is exhibited at Kulungwana, Ballen comments:

When I was working on the Boarding House project I found a space in Johannesburg, a big house that sort of reminded me of the house in the Hitchcock movie Pyscho. I went over to this place and there were people from all walks of life living in it. It was a place near some mine dumps. This man would let people stay there. They had to pay him they went out and did different jobs; sometimes the house was full of people sleeping on the floor. The man was a real lover of animals, especially birds and this man had maybe a couple of hundred birds in the garage - pigeons mainly. He kept them inside too and he allowed them to fly around the house. I was really intrigued cos I had taken pictures of birds before the people would keep the birds as pets. So I've always been obsessed by animals and I've taken pictures of animals for many years. So I continued to do that in this series Asylum but mostly birds. Every picture in the new series has a bird in it whether it's a feather or a drawing of a bird or a flying bird - there are birds in every shot. So it's been a really interesting five years in this place”.

The consistent presence of line, in interior railings, wires, and the hand drawn line on graffiti like walls is the element that threads his creation of a social shadow land from the marginal and the isolated. A shadow land where zoomorphic relations of people and animals, exist as archetypes. Where birds and the macabre mix with the mask, his images intrigues us with the blurred layers between art and the documentary .His dark humour mixes and touches pathos and inspires a sense of something that takes reality through photography to an other realm,

He has had over fifty exhibitions worldwide, and his work is represented in many museums, including the Victoria and Albert Museum in London, Centre Pompidou in Paris and the Museum of Modern Art in New York. In 2013 the National Museum of African Art at the Smithsonian Institution presented a major retrospective of his work. His awards include Photographer of the Year, Rencontres d' Arles-2002 Top 10 Exhibition, Vince Aletti, Artforum - 2002 PhotoEspana, Best Photographic Book of the Year, Spain - 2001 Photo-eye, Best Documentary Title, Best Photography Books of 2001 Sani Festival, Best Solo Exhibition, Greece, 2000 Special mention: UNICEF Photo of the Year 2001.

30 October – 21 November 2014

Sponsors: Norwegian Embassy, Hollard


Kok Nam Preto no Branco Cartaz

"Kok Nam - Black on white" launched on 4 December in Maputo

Kulungwana Cultural Association promotes the launch of the book "Kok Nam - Black on White", edited by Marimbique, on December 4th at 18h00, at Kulungwana's Gallery at the Central Train Station, Maputo. An exhibition with the same title will be opened on the same occasion and can be visited until 19th December.

Kok Nam was one of the most important Mozambican photojournalists, having started his journalism career at "Diário de Moçambique". He then went through the most important Mozambican information organisms, the fact that he was founder of "Tempo" magazine, in the 70s, as well as "Savana" weekly, two decades later, of which he was in fact director, is highlighted. Having passed on in August of 2012, this year he would have turned 75 years old.

The book presents photographs by the Mozambican reporter, who stood out for photographing the first President of Mozambique, Samora Machel, in addition to having been one of the important witnesses of the affirmation of the new nation and the adverse years the country went through. The book also reports the last day in the life of Southern Rodesia, now Zimabwe, amongst other themes.

This book includes text by Alves Gomes, Calane da Silva, Graça Machel, José Luís Cabaço, Luís Bernardo Honwana, Mota Lopes, Nelson Saúte, Rui Assubuji and Patrícia Hayes. “Kok Nam – Black on White” is coordinated by journalist Alves Gomes with image editing by photographer João Costa (Funcho) and is part of the Kulungwana series, an initiative of Marimbique and Kulungwana, with the support of the Norwegian Embassy.