De Arte - Volume 2012, Issue 86, 2012
Volumes & issues
Volume 2012, Issue 86, 2012
Author Bernadette Van HauteSource: De Arte 2012, pp 2 –3 (2012)More Less
While preparing this issue for submission to Unisa Press, we received the sad news that Juliet Armstrong died on Wednesday 22 August 2012. As Professor of Ceramics at UKZN in Pietermaritzburg and a long-standing SAVAH member, Juliet was known and loved by many of our subscribers. Apart from the obituary written by Juliet's cousin, Jillian Carman, the editorial committee decided to include short engagements with her work as homage to a remarkable artist. I need to thank the co-editor, Amanda du Preez, for organising the section 'Remembering Juliet Armstrong' at very short notice. She arranged contributions by Terry King, a former colleague of Juliet; Jenny Stretton, curator at the Durban Art Gallery; and former student, Amanda Bucknall.
Author Jillian CarmanSource: De Arte 2012, pp 4 –5 (2012)More Less
Juliet Armstrong, world-renowned ceramic artist and Associate Professor in the University of KwaZulu-Natal's (UKZN) Centre for Visual Art, Pietermaritzburg, died peacefully on 22 August 2012, five months after being diagnosed with brain cancer. Her brave and dignified struggle during this time and her continuing humour were typical of a remarkable woman who was known and loved by many. She is survived by her husband, educationist Mike Hart, their children Thomas and Jessica, and her step-son Brendan.
The influence of moral therapy on the landscape design of lunatic asylums built in the nineteenth century : researchAuthor Rory Du PlessisSource: De Arte 2012, pp 19 –38 (2012)More Less
There is a need to diminish the dominance of the panopticon as a model for investigating the design of nineteenth-century lunatic asylums. In particular, this need is justified by a number of theorists who argue that the 'panopticon principles' of observation and seclusion were not significant tenets of asylum design and visual culture. Instead, there was an emphasis on deliberately overcoming such aspects in favour of bringing patients together in large open spaces and using non-prisonlike architecture. Such ideals and design features are hallmarks of moral therapy that postulate the curative potential of the asylum through the placement of patients in a carefully designed environment. Consequently, the landscaping of an asylum's external environment was paramount in ensuring therapeutic possibilities. This importance was expressed through a number of design features that nearly all asylum landscapes contained. The author aims primarily to identify such design features by discussing renowned international exemplars of moral therapy. Following from this identification, a secondary aim is to examine the influence of moral therapy in several South African asylums.
The Terra series : 'Terra Firma', 'Terra Nullius', 'Terra Incognita', 'Terra Pericolosa' : views and (re)viewsAuthor Nathani LuneburgSource: De Arte 2012, pp 39 –57 (2012)More Less
Professor Elfriede Dreyer, the owner of Fried Contemporary Art Gallery and Studio in Pretoria, curated a fresh and vibrant exhibition series during 2012 titled the Terra series. This was a sequence of four group exhibitions dealing with contemporary issues relevant in post-apartheid South Africa: visual presentations of the human relation to space, place and land. The series commenced with 'Terra Firma', which opened on 2 February 2012 and ended with the prestigious exhibition 'Terra Pericolosa' on 21 July 2012. Jointly, the four exhibitions showcased the works of 25 upcoming and established artists. With a great selection of contemporary and traditional media, and a combination of sophisticated South African artists, the Terra series produced strong and multifaceted artworks.
Author Melinda SilvermanSource: De Arte 2012, pp 58 –62 (2012)More Less
Leon Krige is an architect by day and a photographer by night. But unlike the divergent personalities of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde, Krige's two identities are mutually reinforcing. Krige's architectural training affords him an understanding of the fixed elements of the city: buildings, street, structure. But at the same time, his work as a photographer affords him an insight into how the city is inhabited - how light, cars, people, transform the urban environment.
Author Landi RaubenheimerSource: De Arte 2012, pp 63 –66 (2012)More Less
The exhibition entitled 'Mine' may be understood as a collection or grouping together of nineteen video artworks that deal with themes particular to the South African landscape and socio-political sphere. The exhibition was curated by artist Abrie Fourie in 2009 and has since travelled between the Africa Centre at the University of Bayreuth, the Dubai Community Theatre & Arts Centre, the UJ Gallery in Johannesburg and most recently the Johannes Stegmann Art Gallery at the University of the Free State in Bloemfontein.
The gift that keeps on giving : Cape Town's Michaelis Collection at the Old Town House : collecting and curatingAuthor Federico FreschiSource: De Arte 2012, pp 67 –72 (2012)More Less
Housed in the Old Town House, one of Cape Town's oldest civic buildings which was built in 1755 in the Cape Rococo style (1), the Michaelis collection of Dutch and Flemish art of the Golden Age is the largest of its kind not only in South Africa, but possibly in the southern hemisphere. There is certainly nothing like it in Australia or New Zealand, and nothing in Brazil despite the Dutch trading connections there. As Jillian Carman (1994) shows, of the well over 400 works of this era in South African public and private collections, the majority are held in the Michaelis Collection. As such, it is an extraordinarily valuable resource, not only in terms of the relative scarcity of works of this era (it is a sobering thought that of the literally millions of Dutch works painted in the 1600s, it is estimated that a mere 1.5 per cent have survived into the twenty-first century), but also as a historical and archival resource that can inform and complicate our understanding of South Africa's colonial history. As Hayden Proud (2012), the current curator of the collection puts it, 'it all just goes to show that these works are in fact fragile survivors, even if they now seem (for us in South Africa) a colonial imposition'.
Visual century: South African art in context. Volume one, 1907-1948, Jillian Carman (Ed.), Gavin Jantjes and Mario Pissarra (Series Eds.) : book reviewAuthor Marion ArnoldSource: De Arte 2012, pp 73 –74 (2012)More Less
Visual century: South African art in context. Volume two, 1945-1976, Lize van Robbroeck (Ed.), Gavin Jantjes and Mario Pissarra (Series Eds.) : book reviewAuthor Jeanne Van EedenSource: De Arte 2012, pp 75 –77 (2012)More Less
There can be no doubt that the Visual century series makes a much-needed contribution to South African art-historical historiography. The thematically and chronologically organised essays serve to update indispensable, if dated, reference books such as Esmé Berman's Art and artists of South Africa (1983) and to complement the growing body of specialist monographs.
Visual century: South African art in context. Volume three, 1973-1992, Mario Pissarra (Ed.), Gavin Jantjes and Mario Pissarra (Series Eds.) : book reviewAuthor Karen Von VehSource: De Arte 2012, pp 78 –80 (2012)More Less
The Visual Century project was envisaged as a 'new' voice for South African art history, an opportunity to bypass outdated practices or expand the restrictive views perpetuated by colonial art history. On the book cover it states: 'By contextualising South African art within broader historical currents, Visual century makes a major contribution towards the construction of an inclusive national archive, as well as to the development of an inclusive international art history.'
Visual century: South African art in context. Volume four, 1990-2007, Thembinkosi Goniwe, Mario Pissarra and Mandisi Majavu (Eds.), Gavin Jantjes and Mario Pissarra (Series Eds.) : book reviewAuthor Pamela AllaraSource: De Arte 2012, pp 81 –83 (2012)More Less
The inside cover of this publication declares: 'By contextualizing South African art within broader historical currents, Visual century makes a major contribution towards the construction of an inclusive national archive, as well as to the development of an inclusive international art history.' Unfortunately, this volume does not reach these goals.
Listening to distant thunder: The art of Peter Clarke, Philippa Hobbs and Elizabeth Rankin : book reviewAuthor Gavin YoungeSource: De Arte 2012, pp 84 –87 (2012)More Less
Hobbs and Rankin are a formidable curatorial team - painstakingly thorough, inexhaustible (their preparation for the exhibition, to which this publication is in part the catalogue, occupied them for seven years), and deeply ethical. It is not the first time that they have paired up to write the definitive book on aspects of South African art and artists - in 1997 they published Printmaking in a transforming South Africa, and a scant five years later they produced a history of the ELC Art and Craft Centre at Rorke's Drift under the rubric Empowering prints.