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Exciting new movable and collaborative project space launches in Joburg

Exhibition and publication launch | 14 September – 9 November 2019 | the gallery, 44 Stanley Avenue, Braamfontein Werf, Johannesburg.

rocks is an exhibition about the same which opens on 14 September 2019 at 14:00, and is curated by Chloë Reid and Matty Roodt. Less of a curatorial essay than a collection of things to be set out and looked at, rocks includes work by Nina Barnett, Nolan Oswald Dennis, Jared Ginsburg, Dan Halter, Thami Jali, Io Makandal, Garth Meyer, Nabeeha Mohamed, Daniella Mooney, Sean O’Toole, Matty Roodt, Jonah Sack, Inga Somdyala and Sitaara Stodel.
     The Magic of Stones, a new chapbook by Sean O’Toole, will be launched at the exhibition opening.
     rocks is a project by gallery, gallery in partnership with the gallery.
    gallery, gallery is a movable and collaborative template for artists, curators and writers that adapts itself to physical spaces in response to its projects. rocks is the first in a series of projects, hosted by and produced in partnership with the gallery.
     the gallery is a platform for contemporary art developed by the atelier. Its programme includes exhibitions, exchanges, workshops, publications and residencies.


Nina Barnett is a South African artist currently living in Johannesburg. She received her MFA from the University of Illinois at Chicago, and her BFA from the University of the Witwatersrand in Johannesburg. She uses drawing, printmaking, photography, moving image and installation to examine particular locations in relation to the body, deep time and vertical scale. Her work seeks connections between the geographical, the experienced and the materiality of surfaces, and questions the relationship between the theoretical, surmised and accidental logic.

Nolan Oswald Dennis is an interdisciplinary artist from Johannesburg. His practice explores what he calls ‘a black consciousness of space’: the material and metaphysical conditions of decolonization. His work questions the politics of space and time through a system-specific, rather than site-specific approach. As such, he is concerned with the hidden structures that pre-determine the limits of our social and political imagination. He holds a degree in Architecture from the University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg and a Masters of Science in Art, Culture and Technology from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT).

Jared Ginsburg was born in 1985 and lives and works in Cape Town. His work has been exhibited both locally and internationally. To date, Ginsburg has had six solo exhibitions, most recently Measuring Nothing at blank projects in 2018. Recent group shows include Both, And at Stevenson, Cape Town (2018), blank at Galerie Guido W. Baudach, Berlin (2018), Sculpture at the Institute of Contemporary Art Indian Ocean, Port Louis, Mauritius (2018) and More for Less at A4 Arts Foundation, Cape Town (2018). In 2018, Ginsburg participated in the Idris Naim residency programme in Oaxaca, Mexico, culminating in the group exhibition Hacer Noche at the Centro Cultural Santo Domingo in Oaxaca de Juarez.

Dan Halter was born in Zimbabwe in 1977. His artistic practice deals with his sense of a dislocated national identity, human migration and the dark humour of present realities in Southern Africa. He uses ubiquitous materials and engages with local popular visual strategies as a form of expression. He has worked with Bienco Ikete, a refugee from the DRC for a number of years collaboratively developing a way of weaving paper artworks. His work has been exhibited extensively locally and internationally in solo and group shows, featured on the 16th and 17th VideoBrasil (São Paulo) in 2007 and 2011, the 10th Havana Biennale in 2009 and the Dakar Biennale in 2010. He has been an artist in residence in Zürich, Cologne, Turin, Rio de Janeiro and Dufftown in Scotland.

Thami Jali was born Lamontville, Durban in 1955. He is a painter, sculptor and graphic artist who studied at the Rorke’s Drift Art Centre, 1981-1982. He went on to study ceramics at the Natal Technikon. He is a founder of Art Communications, 1983. He has participated in exhibitions in South Africa, Swaziland and internationally. He is a Trustee of Community Mural Projects, Durban. His work is represented in the collection of the Durban Art Gallery and the University of Zululand. Jali is currently based in Clermont, Durban, where he has established The Arthouse Project.

Io Makandal was born in Johannesburg in 1987, where she currently works and lives. She completed her BA Fine Art at Michaelis School of Fine Art at the University of Cape Town and is currently a masters candidate at Wits School of Art, Johannesburg. Makandal meanders through materials and themes intuiting objects in space, offsetting and pairing them with unexpected counterparts. Exploring an urban ecology, her work mediates and militates against the effects of urbanism on the environment and human psyche during the Anthropocene. Her work is a fiction of space and place that illustrates the fluctuation between the environment we create and the natural realm.

Garth Meyer is a photographer and filmmaker who lives in South Africa. He is part of The African Film Library and in 2012 he was published in the book South African Cinema 1896 – 2010 by Dr. Martin Botha. In 2013 he was nominated for the Prix Pictet Global Award in Photography and Sustainability. Recently he was part of a group show at the Johannesburg Art Fair (2016), Cape Town Art Fair (2017) with Warren Editions and Smith Studio (2019). Currently he is completing a Masters Dissertation (MFA) at the University of Cape Town. His current thematic exploration and investigation considers transgression, borderlands and political ecology.

Daniella Mooney was born in Nelspruit in 1986. She works across multiple mediums, including painting, sculpture and installation. After having completed a BFA at the Michaelis School of Fine Art at the University of Cape Town, she went on to have two solo shows with Whatiftheworld Gallery, and has participated in numerous local and international group exhibitions involving both design and art. Working mainly in wood and stone, she uses these materials to further explore and celebrate her connection to Nature; which is expressed through her interest in natural phenomena, light as a medium for perception and various mythological themes. She is currently based in Berlin, Germany.

Nabeeha Mohamed was born in Cape Town in 1988. She studied at the Michaelis School of Fine Art at the University of Cape Town. Mohamed’s very personal work grapples with the contradictions of identity and class privilege in post-Apartheid South Africa. Her position as a woman of colour, hushed during her childhood years in an attempt to assimilate to the white society and culture she grew up in, is now celebrated in her paintings where colour and strangeness take centre stage. These celebrations of identity are intersected with a playful critique of the capitalist economy and class privilege from which she benefits. Mohamed has exhibited locally and internationally and is currently working towards her first solo show to be exhibited in February 2020. She will be in residence at the gallery during the course of rocks.

Sean O’Toole is an author, critic, journalist and editor based in Cape Town. His essays, cultural journalism and reviews have appeared in numerous books, journals, newspapers and magazines. He is a contributing editor to Frieze magazine and editor of three volumes of essays, über(W)unden: Art in Troubled Times (2012), African Futures (2016) and The Journey: New African Photography (2019). He has published one book of fiction, The Marquis of Mooikloof and Other Stories (2006), many of its stories set in Pretoria, where he was born in 1968. He is a member of The Bad Reviews, an art-music project founded in 2018 with painter Zander Blom.

Chloë Reid is an artist from Johannesburg. She is interested in everyday sociology and the relationship between reading, writing and artistic practice. She holds degrees from the Michaelis School of Fine Art and the Glasgow School of Art and was awarded a fellowship at the Glasgow Sculpture Studios in 2018. She has exhibited and curated locally and internationally and published two collections of very short stories. She has recently established gallery, gallery with the aim of developing an embodied framework for artists, writers and curators in South Africa.

Matty Roodt is a very interdisciplinary experimental artist working in film, sculpture and comics. They are interested in a variety of things, like computer science, the natural world and found idiosyncrasies. Matty is an intermittent curator and is the founder of the transient project Bazaar. They are currently based in Cape Town.

Jonah Sack works with landscape and narrative, using drawing, map-making, comics, films, and installations. He was born in Johannesburg in 1978, studied Fine Art at the University of the Witwatersrand and the Glasgow School of Art, and is currently based in Cape Town.

Inga Somdyala is a visual artist born in Queenstown, Eastern Cape in 1994. Departing from his isiXhosa cultural identity, Somdyala explores aspects of the cultural, political and epistemological negotiations of the post-apartheid generation. Working primarily in print and installation, his work is an evocative and tactile exploration of isiXhosa cultural history within South African political history as it intersects with his lived experience. He studied at the Michaelis School of Fine Art (UCT) where he received the Katrine Harries Print Cabinet Award and Simon Gerson Prize for his final body of work in 2017. He will complete his MFA studies there in 2019.

Sitaara Stodel was born in Cape Town in 1991, where she lives and works. In 2014 she graduated from the Michaelis School of Fine Art at the University of Cape Town. She has participated in several group shows, exhibiting photography, collage, video and print, and was awarded the Tierney Fellowship in 2015. In 2019 she had a solo booth at the Cape Town Art Fair.

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