I am very excited about my solo exhibition at the Sibisi Gallery, here is a link to the facebook page: http://www.facebook.com/events/328995223848992/329033870511794
I cant wait to see everyone there, this exhibition has been 5 years in the making.
“Animals are nothing but the portrayal of our virtues and vices made manifest to our eyes, the visible reflections of our souls. God displays them to us to give us food for thought.”
Victor Hugo, Les Miserables
In contemporary art, the representation of the animal is ever-present. The relationship between man and animal is a fluid one, one that follows a Hegelian discourse that focuses on the master-slave dialectic whereby we become master over the animal due to our self-conscious ability to recognise ourselves as being self-conscious beings, therefore holding power over that which cannot distinguish itself as self-conscious.
However, the representation of animals in contemporary art has opened up new ways of addressing this relationship, often asking us to look at our own considerations of ourselves as self-conscious beings and using this as a way to aggrandise our status and implicate anything other than human, as below us. The face-to-face encounter between animal and human results in a gaze with the Other. This gaze gives rise to a complex exchange, dramatizing and calling into question the relationship of spectator as subject and his/her place in relation to the animal and its world.
According to Zacharay Tutlane, the category of “animal” has functioned to provide man with a boundary: What is a human? A human is (an animal that is) not an animal. The category “humanity” is therefore reliant on “animal” as its complement. The question becomes: Where do we draw the line (between human and animal)? Does this line actually exist? The aim of the series is to tear human perception from its home; to open up new worlds, to ‘look out’ from animality.
The series’ depiction of sheep ultimately becomes a functionary for human solipsism: mere lenses to reflect or refract images of ourselves. The series explores our relation to that which is different, exploring how we as human beings function in society. The series attempts to explain that what is required is a move from the human semiotic culture to that of the animal. We must be willing to take a stroll into other worlds in order to understand ourselves. The series provides a comment on the way our cultural constructions of relationships to animals (such as the master-slave dialectic) inevitably reduces us to that which we try to categorise and control as lesser than ourselves (in this case, the animal).