Bambo Sibiya exhibition opens in Durban [fr]
Ambassador of France to South Africa, HE Elisabeth Barbier, and Director of the Alliance Française in Durban, Sarah Doignon, attended the opening of 2012 Gerard Sekoto Award Winner Bambo Sibiya’s his solo exhibition "Umlambo uzwiwa nge dondolo" at Artspace in Durban on 20 July 2015.
The exhibition is touring the Alliance Française Network in Southern Africa this year and will be on display in Durban until August 4.
Through this exhibition Sibiya explores the various aspects of township life with particular emphasis been given to single parent households which has become a formative part of his life and migrant labourers coming to Johannesburg at the peak of apartheid in the hope of finding work.
Sibiya, and his two siblings, were raised in a township outside Johannesburg by their mother. At a young age their mother was able to shape and mould them, ensuring they grew up in a loving and supportive household, while at the same time balancing the running of the household and working to sustain the needs of her family.
For Sibiya the love and support that his mother gave unconditionally fostered the respect and gratitude not only for his own mother but single mothers in general. For him single mothers’ are having to play the part of two role models as mother and father, balancing their duties as parents in raising our future leaders while at the same time overcoming daily challenges.
In the series of children’s faces, Sibiya invites us to celebrate the beauty and promise these faces holds for the world. These faces document the possibilities that children promise for the future. In these portraits Sibiya not only presents us with these promises shown in the blind embossing surrounding these portraits but makes us aware of the responsibility we have in shaping these futures and thus shaping the future of our country. These portraits become in a sense a further homage to his mother and other single parents.
While Sibiya was growing up the men that surrounded him and his siblings, were the men from the township that shaped and formed his understanding of men. Amongst the men surrounding him were the migrant workers, a cultural expression developed to living in an apartheid era. Swenkas, working-class Zulu men participated in amateur competitions that are part fashion show and part choreography, the purpose of which is to display one’s style and sense of attitude. For Sibiya as well as so many other young people growing up in these areas these ‘competitions’ became an important part of their formative years.
- About the Gerard Sekoto Prize
This annual award sponsored by the French Embassy, the French Institute, the Alliance Francaise, SANAVA and ABSA is hosted as part of South Africa’s most prestigious art competition, ABSA L’Atelier. This prize is awarded to the most promising South African visual artist who earns less than R 60 000 per year. It includes a return ticket to Paris, 3 months’ stay at the Cité Internationale des Arts in Paris, nationwide touring exhibitions and training in French.
- 2015 Alliance Française Network Tour
- Gaborone: 10 September – 25 September
- Cape Town: 15 October – 6 November
- Pretoria: 19 November – 13 December