Creative Destruction: Group Exhibition!

A Group Exhibition Featuring:

Katlego Tlabela
Ndikhumbule Ngqinambi
Chris van Eeden
Daya Heller
Jeannette Unite
Ronald Muchatuta
Ley Mboramwe

Creative Destruction

The notion of destruction has founded creative ideas for centuries, through notions of catharsis and revolution – to release and make new. Creative Destruction exists in the South African landscape through the purging of old foliage in veld fires, where red hot pokers and fire lilies pop up to brighten the blackened ground before the new fynbos re-growth starts to rise. The conceptual notion of the sublime – the dichotomies of dark and stunning light, a poised landscape poses as picturesque and tense with energy. At the height of summer in the combustive dry air, the tenuous static combusts in order to bring in new growth, change and revival, where beauty is literally borne from the ashes.

In the current economic climate, with political tensions and continuous social tipping points leading to new perspectives, the notion of Creative Destruction hopes for innovation.

There is a call to replace outdated practices and for new beginnings to be informed by previous practices and further improved. As a year filled with upheaval and complicated dynamics and exciting experiences comes to a close, the inevitability of the New Year draws near and the cycle continues.

Creative Destruction was termed in relation to economic principles that focused around the manifestations of capitalism. Joseph Schumpeter, the man who phrased the concept in 1942 (a time of particularly creative destruction), hailed from Austria and was known as an ardent capitalist, who saw creative destruction as ‘the essential fact about capitalism’.

In the age of technology, with new devices and applications endlessly being created the possibility for communication is broadening and extending more than we had ever imagined. Social networks bombard us with images constantly; videos, pod casts, screens of news feeds and timelines replacing broadcasts, books, journals and newspapers crowd our everyday existence. Schumpeter, used the example of the railroad to demonstrate his ideal working of the principle: as a powerful transforming agent that opens up new opportunities while clearing away old areas of stagnated activity. In many ways, communication confronts this notion, with the visual becoming more central and accessible and as such, the contemporary dynamics have an affect on the visual medium that often is Fine Art. Where do we go from here and how can the practice of art making learn to negotiate and reposition itself today?

The change of season and the rehanging of a new show for Eclectica Contemporary aims to refresh and re-picture ideas of summer and the considerations of the end of 2016. Creative destruction offers a vehicle for response that can be used to encourage creation and open up new conversations.

Cape Times Article:

Cape Times: Creative Destruction

Katlego Tlabela

Katlego Tlabela
Celebration
2016
Lithography-ink and Enamel Paint on canvas
70 x 90 cm

Katlego Tlabela
No Fear
2016
Lithography-ink and Enamel Paint on canvas
70 x 90 cm

Katlego Tlabela
Greatness
2016
Lithography-ink and Enamel Paint on canvas
70 x 90 cm

Katlego Tlabela  (b. 1993) Pretoria, South Africa, is an artist currently completing his 4th year of BA in Fine Arts at the University of Cape Town’s Michaelis School of Fine Art. He is primarily majoring in Printmaking and spanning his practice to other disciplines such as photography, sound and sculpture.

He has taken part in numerous group exhibitions, locally and abroad and has work in both private and public collections.

Tlabela’s artistic interests have spanned from social and political crises in Post-Apartheid South Africa namely labour-related violence, resistance, dialogues around race and positive methods of representation of the black body.

Artist Statement

Negro Sunshine (an ongoing silkscreened and hand painted series) partially derives from the works by African American multi-disciplinary artist, Glenn Ligon. The words “negro sunshine” were re-appropriated from Gertrude Stein’s 1909 novella Three Lives in which Stein repeatedly implements the phrase to describe the Novella’s main protagonists – which at that time referred to the racist stereotype of the “happy darkie.” 

“Like Ligon, I have re-appropriated the phrase in an attempt of stripping away ALL negative connotations from the proposed texts, some of which are derogatory and racially stereotypical towards Black people.  For Creative Destruction, my work re-appropriates various texts, lyrics and revolutionary placards from protests with an attempt to bring in new growth, change and revival where beauty is born out of the ashes. ”

Chris van Eeden

Chris van Eeden
Under Indulgence, Over Control
2016
Mixed media installation
≈ 120 x 206 cm

Chris van Eeden
Because
2016
Mixed media on canvas
95 x 123 cm

We Present...-Chris van Eeden

Chris van Eeden
We present: as new and improved innovations in nu-sincerity(FreeGift*)
2016
Mixed media installation
≈ 200 x 150 x 205 cm

We Present...-Chris van Eeden

Chris van Eeden
We present: as new and improved innovations in nu-sincerity(FreeGift*)
2016
Mixed media installation
≈ 200 x 150 x 205 cm

Chris van Eeden b.1977 in suburban Cape Town, subsequently became a scientist, completing his M.Sc in Molecular Genetics and Virology Cum Laude in 2006, at the university of Stellenbosch — which as he recalls: “was fun while it lasted”.  Since then he studied at The Michaelis School of Fine Art, completing his BA FA in 2012. Chris specifically enjoys collaboration resulting in his latest collective Critical Mis with artist, Miranda Moss.  He has also earned a few artistic merits including, but not limited to, the GC Saker Scholarship for exceptional work in the Fine Arts (2012)

Artist Statement

“In The Communist Manifesto Marx and Engels used the phrase ‘all that is solid melts into air’ to describe both the wake of destruction left by industrial capitalism in order to generate new product markets, and its abstraction of human labour.  In my work I interpret this phrase to also refer to object and media meaning/value, as a consequence of the globalized conflation of culture, media, signs, trends and sourced human industry.  My seemingly chaotic process is a translation of the density and multi-layered experiences of our daily visual and consumer experiences.  Like in media; meaning, narrative, objects, images and words are unbound from their apparent value and enters a state of flux between the patently recognizable and the completely abstract.  My objects and images channel Joseph Schumpeter’s ‘Gale’: everything that’s not continuously new, blaring, entangled, mental and incessant; is immaterial.”

Daya Heller

We Present...-Chris van Eeden
We Present...-Chris van Eeden

Daya Heller
Life Cycle
2016
Fynbos in Resin Installation
≈ 50 x 50 x 50 cm

Daya Heller is a fine artist practicing in the mediums of sculpture, painting and drawing. She finds inspiration  exploring the human form and experience. She graduated in sculpture from Michaelis School of Fine Art in 2006. She became well known for her public sculptural installation at Afrikaburn – Lilith & The Garden of Eden(2014).

In 2015 she had a retrospective, self-organised solo exhibition in Scarborough, called: Liminal Alchemy; and her debut solo, EROS LOGOS – of Sex & God took place at Diedericks/Faber Fine Art in November the same year.

Artist Statement

“My work has always revolved around the cyclical nature of life, death and rebirth, the alchemical metamorphosis of human experience, aspiration and ascension. The fynbos drops symbolise water falling down, and plants growing up, two fundamental directions in the cycle of nature. As the plant fragments are preserved, and eternally captured in their magnified beauty, though no longer living, there is a reference to death and the momentary.”

Heller chooses to look metaphorically at the notion of Creative Destruction. Her aptly named installation, Life Cycle, captures and prevents the natural decay of a flower by seizing it within a cocoon of resin. Heller disrupts the notion of Creative Destruction by contrasting its fundamental principle. She does this by transforming the old and giving it permanency instead of offering us something new as a replacement.

Onyis Martin

Onyis Martin
Papers of Freedom 20
2016
Indian ink on water-colour paper
71 x 91.5 cm (framed)

Onyis Martin
Papers of Freedom 19
2016
Indian ink on water-colour paper
71 x 91.5 cm (framed)

Onyis Martin
Papers of Freedom 18
2016
Indian ink on water-colour paper
71 x 91.5 cm (framed)

Onyis Martin (b. 1987 in Kisumu, Kenya) is a young painter and mixed media artist living and working in Nairobi whose practice is rapidly gaining national and international recognition. Recently, in 2016, he won a merit award at the Barclay’s L’atelier competition, for his mixed media installation: Does it matter who is speaking?

Artist Statement

Papers of Freedom depicts human form reflecting on aspects of our vulnerability, giving voice to inner psychological and spiritual states of being.

“In this series, I am portraying freedom as an abstract person who is affected by time and place. One embodies different characters that have various masks, they are prisoners of circumstance and hope, they might think they are free but they are restricted in so many different ways, in this case, by boarders and boundaries.” 

Using personal experiences as a point of departure, his work explores, portrays and reflects on global issues; commenting on human conditions (both mental and physical) such as immigration, human trafficking, political and institutional corruption, issues of freedom, communication, rapidly evolving technological information, consumerism and gender. Martin echoes the theme of Creative Destruction on an existential level. His work comments on the unrelenting changes on psychological and spiritual states of being that results from the restrictions and demands of one’s current environment.

Ley Mboramwe

Ley Mboramwe
Traffic Light
2016
Acrylic on canvas
110 x 110 cm

Ley Mboramwe
I’m Gone
2016
Acrylic on canvas
110 x 110 cm

Ley Mboramwe hails from the Democratic Republic of Congo. He completed his degree in Fine Art at the ‘Academie des Beaux’ in Kinshasa (the centre of Africa).

In March 2009, Mboramwe took part in a group exhibition at Alliance Francaise in Cape Town, where he used installation and performance art to present a series of paintings against xenophobic violence, under the topic: Is Africa singular or plural.

His life experience in the Congo, its suffering, beauty, politics, culture and economic circumstances is evident in his work.

Mboramwe attempts to transfigure flesh into spirit, flesh into the depths of human suffering and happiness, flesh into the inner beauty and despair of human life. Ultimately, Mboramwe uses the body as a mirror to the soul.

Artist Statement

“There seems to be a new direction for Creative Destruction, moving diametrically away from nineteenth century modern art, and twentieth century avant-garde/postmodern era. The iconoclastic practices of this art have become familiar and passĕ, and, consequently, been embraced by popular culture now.”

Mboramwe attempts to break away from the beautiful, ideal depiction of the human body preferred by society, He arguably makes an iconoclastic gesture, placing importance on the abject in art. Mboramwe further emphasises the abject in humanity by confronting the viewer and forcing us to face the ‘ugly’ on the canvass and perhaps in ourselves.

Ronald Muchatuta

Ronald Muchatuta
Sardines Matter
2016
Mixed media
99 x 152 cm

Ronald Muchatuta
Oil Brutality
2016
Mixed media
102 x 154 cm

Ronald Muchatuta is a Zimbabwean-born contemporary artist currently residing in Cape Town, who specializes in drawing, painting and mosaic. He began his career at the age of 16 as a pottery decorator at Ros Byrne Pottery in Harare, Zimbabwe in 2001. After being mentored at Gallery Delta in Harare and finishing his fine art exams through National Gallery of Zimbabwe in 2003, he relocated to South Africa in 2007 to pursue a career as an Artist. He is recognised as qualified Mosaic Artist at Spier Art Academy in Cape Town where he completed his Masters degree in 2012.

Previous artworks and special commissions are located in spaces of prestige around the globe. He has exhibited at the African Art Fair 2015 Paris, France and The UN–Milan Expo 2015  representing Africa in Milan, Italy. Most recently, in 2016, he has exhibited at the Gallery of the University of Stellenbosch and Michaelis Galleries / University of Cape Town.

Artist Statement

“The narrative of this work reflects on how sardines are classified within the marine kingdom. Due to their survival instincts, sardines avoid extinction even though the level of competition for survival is always high. The work, in regards to Creative Destruction, is based on the will to survive and to rise from adversity.”

Jeannette Unite

Jeannette Unite
Measuring Modernity: A Rulers Foot
Series
2016
Mixed media on board
30 x 30 cm

Jeannette Unite is a South African artist who works in a range of media, often utilizing minerals and by-products from the mining industry in her work , which takes as its major subject matter that industry and its historiocal and ecological legacy. Unite completed her Masters in Fine Art (MFA) with distinction at Michaelis School of Fine Art, University of Cape Town in 2014. In 2016 she was awarded the Mzansi Golden Economy Grant, SA Department of Arts & Culture for TERRA in Dortmund, Germany and Exeter University, UK.

Artist Statement

“Since the 1990s, I have focused on mining and humans rapacious extraction for minerals and metals, as the driving force behind capitalism in the hunt for ingredients used to manufacture. The panels in Measuring Modernity: The Rulers Feet, references the ruler (30cm or one foot) that measure, in metric and imperial, dimensions of the Earth’s surface in order to divide by title deed and mineral right. Legal texts are embedded into an acrylic emulsion of minerals collected by the artist from industrial sites and mines.”

Unite grapples with the theme of Creative Destruction by commenting directly on the exploitation of natural and human resources that result from economic principles (specifically the mines and miner contexts) sanctioned by a capitalist-driven society.

Ndikhumbule Ngqinambi

Ndikhumbule Ngqinambi
Gravy Express II
2016
Oil on canvas
50 x 100 cm

Ndikhumbule Ngqinambi
Scrolls
2016
Oil on canvas
50 x 100 cm

Ndikhumbule Ngqinambi b. 1977, Cape Town, South Africa, is a self-taught artist, who received some art education at the Community Arts Project School in Woodstock, and AFDA School of Motion Picture medium and Performance in Cape Town. He has had numerous solo and group exhibitions locally and abroad. What is more, his artwork is in numerous prestigious South African art collections. He has also been invited and awarded distinguished residencies in Europe and the USA. He is currently based at Greatmore Artists Studios, Woodstock, Cape Town.

Artist Statement:

“The two works for Creative Destruction speaks both literally of destruction itself. Scrolls references the student protests in South Africa and the consequent destruction that follows. Gravy Express II looks at South Africa’s chaotic and destructive government. Both works asks questions of the viewer. Scrolls asks the viewer to question their own reactions to the student protests – to see the youths’ message in their smoke and flames, while Gravy Express II asks the viewer what is wrong with our government, the president and his ‘crew’ – can we find the answers by letting this train run its course and derail?”

Ngqinambi references an economical perspective of Creative Destruction. Scrolls and Gravy Train II speak of not only destruction but transformation of old structures leading to new perspectives, albeit not always positive.

First Thursday Opening Night:

2017-06-27T13:09:28+00:00