Brazil residency a great opportunity for artist Thato Seboko

Fine artist Thato Seboko is to fly the SA flag high when he showcases his talent in Brazil through an artist residency programme.

Seboko, 26, leaves SA tomorrow night and returns on November 8.

Born and bred in Itsoseng, a township in Mahikeng, North West, Seboko will join artists from Italy, the US, Canada and Brazil to exchange cultures and knowledge.

He plans to use the residency to network with other artists and build contacts with galleries and museums.

Seboko regards the opportunity as a platform to establish his international profile and learn about other cultures.

"It will give me an opportunity to expose what I do to new markets," he says. "This will help me grow as an artist."

Seboko specialises in painting in oils and acrylics and pastels on canvas; print making with linocuts, silkscreen printing, etching and engraving.

He will introduce the world to his technique of painting with hair dye.

Seboko struggles to access spaces in Mahikeng to show off his creations and get buyers. He survives on commissions and doing portraits.

"It is a struggle to show and sell my work because I am far away from the art hubs of Johannesburg, Pretoria and Cape Town," he says.

Seboko, who studied fine and applied arts at Tshwane University of Technology, has been drawing since he was seven years old.

He has exhibited at Mahikeng Museum, Nakiso Curl Fest,
Zulu Nyala Country Manor, Cape Town International Convention Centre, Mellow House Factory, Hatfield, Pretoria and Taung Cultural Calabash Exhibition and Tshwane University of Technology Gallery.