Lerato Shadi exhibits her work back home

Lerato Shadi
Lerato Shadi

Visual artist Lerato Shadi has built quite a profile when it comes to challenging common assumptions and critiquing Western notions of history.

Born in Mahikeng, North West, Shadi, who now lives and works in Berlin, Germany, continues with her favourite subject in her latest exhibition.

Her work will be included on the gallery's forthcoming group exhibition titled The Head The Hand, which was set to open yesterday at Black Projects in Cape Town.

Shadi is exhibiting alongside Igshaan Adams, Shadi Al-Atallah, Wonder Buhle, Herman Mbamba, Sabelo Mlangeni, Cinga Samson and Inga Somdyala, among others.

Shadi explains that her work deals with the politics of cultural erasure and structural exclusion while working across video, performance and installation.

"It serves to challenge myself, and hopefully my audience as well, in how I/we are complicit in the violence of historical erasure by not fighting for a more inclusive and accurate historical narrative," she says.

" I realised that - by just blindly or lazily accepting an inaccurate history - I would be sanctioning the problematic dominant narrative with my own inactivity."

The exhibition will feature some of her work that includes Lefa Le, a site-specific installation, engages questions of visual and enabling knowledge, in order to decolonise canonical lenses of interpretation.

The experiential theatricality work is a celebratory meditation which is aimed to unsettle the viewer's expectations and assumptions.

"Lefa Le is composed of two dialectical neon signs installed in a confined space with red walls and carpeting, partitioned on two sides with blue curtains through which the spectators pass," she says.

Shadi graduated from the University of Johannesburg and further did her Master's in Spatial Strategies from the Weißensee Academy of Art in Berlin, Germany.