Lady Skollie tackles sides of good and evil

"Let us pray," is how the statement of Lady Skollie's latest art exhibition at Circa Gallery in Rosebank opens.

She continues: "I close my eyes and I see Jesus [white] surrounded by 12 men [white], he is far upon a hill top, preaching.

"The wind carries his voice far away from me. I only catch snippets of words and ideas. I am on the outskirts, I can't hear. I start making up my own stories."

Titled Good & Evil, the controversial and thought-provoking exhibition is on until July 6.

Skollie, 32, whose real name is Laura Windvogel, has never shied away from controversy and tackling taboos. To those who have been following her work closely, her recent exhibition does not come as a shock.

Using symbolic images in ink, watercolour and crayon, she addresses a wide variety of subjects from issues of sex, consent, relationships and social politics.

Her latest exhibition will ruffle feathers among the Christian community who can easily regard her interpretation as blasphemy.

Her interesting works include Papsak Propaganda III: And I Was Really Far Out And You Thought I Was Waving, But I Was Drowning, which tackles the issue of alcoholism - the "dop system", where workers on wine farms are paid with a case of wine instead of money.

The Cape Town born artist presents her own understanding and interpretation of good and bad about Jesus Christ and religion.

She explains that she grew up listening to the story of how fish and bread multiplying manifests in life and water turning into wine.

"My favourite is learning about Lot's wife. I start to understand that if you don't do what God and your husband say they turn you into a salt pillar. I wonder if being a salt statue isn't better than being a woman serving a man.

"My father took me to see Jesus Christ Superstar at the age of nine. I started to imagine Jesus carrying an AK47 . My father collected tithes in a small velvet bag. I'm not allowed to wear a three-piece suit in church so I stopped going."

Her love for visual art started at a young age and led her to explore it further and at university. Skollie's work rejects the twofold identity and industry expectations and her defiant attitude extends to the content of her art.

Skollie staged an exhibition titled Hottentot $kollie, which portrayed Sarah Baartman - a Khoi woman exhibited all over Europe because of her large buttocks.

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