Isibingelelo revives art fortunes in Springs

Siphiwe Fokazi work as displayed on the left, and David Tsoka's example of acrylic and oil on canvas art on the right (in orange).
Siphiwe Fokazi work as displayed on the left, and David Tsoka's example of acrylic and oil on canvas art on the right (in orange).

Springs Art Gallery in Ekurhuleni is hosting its first exhibition this year titled Isibingelelo in an effort to launch careers of emerging and promising visual artists.

According to the show curator Nkululeko Khumalo, Isibingelelo - greetings in Zulu - is part of the gallery's experimental solo and group series project idea that explores and illustrates creativity, thoughts and new ideas.

The art on display does not only reveal the role of art in dealing with issues but also looks at everyday life challenges.

Isibingelelo is further aimed at contributing to the awareness, promotion, revival and enrichment of Springs Art Gallery as an art resource centre.

The exhibition is a colourful expressive showpiece by two contemporary artists, Siphiwe Fokazi and David Tsoka.

The two present an exhibition that is packed with diverse sources of inspiration, ranging from abstract images and shapes, striking paintings, relief sculptural work and collage piece inspired by domestic objects.

The featured work encapsulates ideas about artists trying to find their voices of expression.

The two artists, who both hail from KwaThema in Springs, experience a solo exhibition for the first time.

Fokazi is a self-taught artist who has been honing his skills in collage and painting for the past few years. His collage evolution introduces other objects, sculptural elements to his art and demonstrates the range of his artistic talent even further.

Throughout his artistic journey, Fokazi has always been fascinated by images that represent a person's identity, usually showing the face and how the world is represented through the eyes of others.

Fokazi says: "My quest is in finding the essence of a person's identity and balance outside all societal value systems.

"A person's identity can easily be confused to what we see, which sets a tone in conclusion, while what we see is already in the past. Beliefs and emotions can shape some balance in a person and give a bit of light into a person's identity."

Fokazi was selected as one of the top 100 artists featured in the Thami Mnyele Fine Arts Awards Competition in 2018. His collage work, Yilungelo Lakho, was exhibited in Joburg's Stop Sign Gallery.

Meanwhile, Tsoka developed an interest in art at a young age, drawing inspiration from artists like Marco Cianfanelli

He is fascinated by how Ciamfanielli uses ordinary objects and materials like steel and razor wire to create images and public art. An example of his work is the Nelson Mandela Monumental sculpture portrait located near Howick in KwaZulu- Natal.

Tsoka, who studied an advanced Printmaking and a Professional Development Practice training at the Artist Proof Studio, use impressive paintings and prints depicting both abstract and cubist forms.

Cubisim was made famous by artists Pablo Picasso and Georges Braque.

Tsoka enjoys tile work and painting on canvas. These mediums allow him to explore colour and technique and are limitless mediums.

His works are visually bold and have high contrast to images, but also add a sophisticated ambiance to any collection.

"A good artist can take any medium and see its potential and make it exciting and modern, a good artist sees beyond the basics of the medium they are being taught," Tsoka said.

"I wish that as a student, I, had that insight. I am seeing a lot more lino printing in recent years than I have seen before. Students are using this print medium in exciting new ways..."

Isibingelelo is on at Springs Art Gallery in Springs until March 31

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