De Arte - Volume 2008, Issue 77, 2008
Volumes & issues
Volume 2008, Issue 77, 2008
Author Eunice BassonSource: De Arte 2008, pp 2 –3 (2008)More Less
In this issue of de arte 77 three research articles have been published. In her article entitled Ryckaert at work: A Flemish painter's view of labour, Bernadette van Haute looks at Ryckaert's depictions of men at work which reveal an acute awareness of social differentiation on the basis of professional identity. The craftsmen are invariably depicted as examples of industry and diligence, a view strengthened by the inclusion of the artisan's spinning wife. By using his art 'tot leeringh vande jeught' (to instruct the youth), Ryckaert actively contributed to the shaping of social norms.
Author Bernadette Van HauteSource: De Arte 2008, pp 4 –19 (2008)More Less
In his depictions of men at work, David III Ryckaert reveals an acute awareness of social differentiation on the basis of professional identity. The craftsman is invariably depicted as an example of industry and diligence, a view strengthened by the inclusion of the artisan's spinning wife. Ryckaert, however, made sure to remind the viewer of the fundamental baseness of the labouring classes, whereas professions of a more intellectual nature (such as artists) were treated with greater respect. This reflects the artist's desire, shared by his clients, to consolidate and justify the social order. By using his art 'tot leeringh vande jeught' (to instruct the youth), he actively contributed to the shaping of social norms.
Hidden treasures in ivory towers : the untapped wealth of South African university art collections : researchAuthor Eva FranzidisSource: De Arte 2008, pp 20 –35 (2008)More Less
This article takes as its point of departure the ongoing financial difficulties of the South African National Gallery (SANG), reviewing the reasons that may account for its precarious status. Often at odds with those in political power, this institution has never gained financial support from the powers that be, and in turn, the majority of its visitors have typically come from a specific demographic. It is the argument of this article that as a result of this situation, universities in South Africa have found themselves in a unique position in which to empower and educate those who may not otherwise have access to artworks, and this should be actively pursued. While globally many university art collections enjoy a prominent status within their communities, and are well endowed and visited, their South African counterparts are sorely underused and undervalued. Thus, the aim of the study is twofold: in the first instance, an argument is made for the positive and productive role South African university art collections could play within their society, and secondly, primary research undertaken at several universities reveals the rich and varied collections held throughout the country.
Source: De Arte 2008, pp 36 –51 (2008)More Less
Christine Dixie's Bloodspoor (1997), an installation comprised of two framed photographs, two chairs and nine prints, was the artist's first sustained engagement with the politics of landscape representation. Identifying the ways in which Dixie explored the potential culpability of her 1820-settler ancestors in the violence and dispossession that took place in the Eastern Cape, the authors also reveal how Bloodspoor provides an engagement with the ways in which frontier policy has left traces of barriers, fortresses and structures of surveillance on the landscape. The article develops out of brief observations by David Bunn and Brenda Atkinson that Bloodspoor focuses on the ways in which an idea of the desirable landscape - manifested in picturesque paintings - was intricately linked to endeavours on the part of colonialists to negotiate a foreign terrain marked by conflict, trauma and violence. Through a detailed analysis of its various components, the authors suggest that Bloodspoor offers both a subversion of picturesque conventions and an exploration of the psyche of settler forebears who - for all their attempts to manage their new abode - could never quite adapt it into 'home'.
Author Pam AllaraSource: De Arte 2008, pp 52 –57 (2008)More Less
2007 has been a year to celebrate feminism - old and new - in the United States. Two major exhibitions, 'Global feminisms: new directions in contemporary art' at the Brooklyn Museum and 'WACK! Art and the feminist revolution' at the Museum of Contemporary Art in Los Angeles were ambitious surveys of international contemporary art by women, and feminist art from 1960-1985 respectively. Together, the exhibitions and their weighty catalogues seemed to claim that they provided a definitive account of feminist art practice from its inception to the present, as well as to imply that these were the first exhibits to seriously and exhaustively address feminist art and its history.
Author Adelle HerselmanSource: De Arte 2008, pp 58 –66 (2008)More Less
The digital storeroom: rethinking the Unisa Online Collection is a consideration of the web-based museum as a new venture of access and interactivity. The traditional role of the museum as a centralised repository of art objects is being challenged. Notions of access and interactivity are considered, as the Internet provides new structures for the museum to open itself up towards diverse publics. The Internet-based museum also poses challenges. Problematic aspects of loss of information such as colour, texture and detail, are discussed by means of examples from the Unisa Permanent Collection. A final consideration of this article is the question of the value of the art object and its image. The experience of actual objects is juxtaposed with the informative value of the digital image in a dialogue between the traditional role of the museum and its new function as online gallery. The website is thus considered a supplementary or alternative to the art museum, by offering layers of meaning instead of the experience of the actual artwork. Throughout the essay, the Unisa Online Collection is considered in relation to the concept of André Malraux's 'museum without walls', and an attempt is made to consider the possibilities of the museum that is more open and relevant to its public.
ReVisions : Expanding the narrative of South African art. The Campbell Smith Collection, Hayden Proud (Ed.) : book reviewAuthor Lize Van RobbroeckSource: De Arte 2008, pp 67 –69 (2008)More Less
The Campbell Smith Collection comprises over 470 works, mostly by black South African artists, assembled over a period of 20 years. ReVisions was an exhibition of a selection from this collection curated by Hayden Proud at the Iziko / South African National Gallery. The catalogue accompanying this exhibition is a hefty hardcover publication of 360 pages with high-resolution, glossy colour reproductions.
Women by women : 50 years of women's photography in South Africa, Robin Comley, George Hallett and Neo Ntsoma (Eds.) : book reviewAuthor Brenda SchmahmannSource: De Arte 2008, pp 70 –73 (2008)More Less
Claim to the country : The archive of Lucy Lloyd and Wilhelm Bleek, Pippa Skotnes (Ed.) : book reviewAuthor Robert J. GordonSource: De Arte 2008, pp 74 –77 (2008)More Less
It is a landmark occasion when Pippa Skotnes publishes a book on those called 'Bushmen'. Her Sounds from the thinking strings achieved notoriety when the question of whether it was a book or an artwork went all the way up to the appeal court. Miscast, the volume she edited to accompany her exhibition of that title, provoked much controversy and inaugurated a lively debate on the politics of indigeneity. Now we have the provocatively titled Claim to the country.
Author Anitra NettletonSource: De Arte 2008, pp 78 –81 (2008)More Less
Author Virginia MacKennySource: De Arte 2008, pp 82 –85 (2008)More Less
Mozart's The Magic Flute was first performed in 1791. It was the embodiment of many of the principle concerns of the Enlightenment, most specifically the triumphing of rationality over ignorance, light over dark. In 1998 William Kentridge was commissioned by the Théâ tre Royal de la Monnaie in Brussels to direct a contemporary production of it, which premiered in 2005.