Exhibition: Celebrating visual activism


Lerato Tambai Moloi’s funeral, by Collen Mfazwe

A group exhibition, initiated by Zanele Muholi, that celebrates the work of women activist photographers, is on this month in Johannesburg.

The On Visual Activism exhibition features the works of young South African visual activists who have been working with the internationally acclaimed Muholi under the banner of the XP Project.

The XP Project, which is co-facilitated by Lindeka Qampi, a Cape Town based award winning photographer, aims to share and develop the art of photography amongst young women.

The works on exhibition are by these up and coming visual artists, who are beneficiaries of the XP Project. They include works by Boitumelo Nkopane, Collen Mfazwe, Kamo Petlele, Lebogang Mashifane, Lerato Dumse, Lindeka Qampi, Thembela Dick, and Velisa Jara. The exhibition also features some works by Muholi herself.

Since 2013, the exhibiting activists / artists have spent time documenting the existence and resistance of Women’s struggles, with particular emphasis on the experiences of the LGBTI citizens of South Africa. The body of work is described as “an expression of their visual activism and an act in claiming full citizenship”.

In South Africa, members of the LGBTI community, especially black gay, lesbian and transgender people, have been attacked, abused, beaten, ‘curatively raped’ and even murdered due to lesbo and transphobia.

On Visual Activism aims to open up a window into the lives of this marginalised community and to begin a dialogue to help bridge the chasm that exists between the LGBTI community and the broader community of South Africa.

The photographs and videos on show in On Visual Activism force the viewer to answer the question: “Are we as women, and the LGBTI community, truly free?”

Exhibition details
Venue: Women’s Jail, Old Women’s Jail, East wing Constitutional Hill, 2 Kotze Street, Braamfontein, Johannesburg
Opening night: 10 August 2017. Time: 18:00 – 21:00
Exhibition period: 10 – 31 August 2017 – Monday to Sunday

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