Pushing the boundaries of artistic excellence

As last year’s winner of the Sasol New Signatures Art Competition, Lebohang Kganye has spent the past year developing her practice, and will be presenting her latest work, Mohlokomedi wa Tora, alongside the top 100 entrants for the Sasol New Signatures 2018 at the Pretoria Art Museum. Her exhibition opens on 29 August and runs until 7 October 2018. Creative Feel spoke to Kganye about the past year and her plans for the future.

Lebohang Kganye is a young artist well on her way to success. Her passion, innovation, creativity, intelligence and professionalism, mixed with an openness and humble confidence make her not only deserving of her 2017 Sasol New Signatures win but also see her at the fore of young, upcoming artists in South Africa.
     Sasol Curator, Cate Terblanche, says that what makes Kganye’s work so appealing ‘is her sophisticated re-interpretation of rather old-fashioned, labour-intensive animation techniques, combined with her personal meditations on her roots which results in a surprisingly fresh account of a familiar narrative. Kganye’s work shows how artists can draw from the past, and present ideas and techniques anew while pushing the boundaries of artistic excellence in their practice.’

Sasol New Signatures

     Since winning the award for her animated film, Ke sale teng, which features silhouette cut-outs of family members and other props in a diorama, Kganye has been hard at work creating her latest offering. ‘The work is an installation entitled Mohlokomedi wa Tora, which still includes my primary medium, photography,’ she says. ‘I work across different disciplines from photography to video, sculpture and installation. These varied mediums within my practice are present in some form in the exhibition at the Sasol New Signatures.
     ‘It is very different to my previous work, which I think is important because receiving an award enables you to experiment and explore ideas you perhaps did not have the means or support to do so before. I am very excited to have this new work show, because the work moves in a new direction.’
     As she hands the baton over to the next Sasol New Signatures winner, Kganye’s advice for other young artists is: ‘I believe we all have that unshakeable power about us, that we just need to embrace by trusting in the urgency of your dreams. Be kind to your idea and dream, no matter how far out of reach it may seem because our most powerful gift is our ability to dream. I think this saying is relevant, to “Keep on keeping on”.’
     Creative Feel can’t wait to see Kganye’s installation Mohlokomedi wa Tora and if her past works are anything to go by, it is sure to be exceptional.

To read more about how she works with life-size cardboard cut-outs for her photography and video works purchase our August 2018 issue of Creative Feel, or continue supporting the arts and culture sector by subscribing to our monthly magazine.