From Okmalumkoolkat's new music video to Lara Klawikowski's "wearable art", here's a weekly round-up of SA's creative community by Between 10and5.
Ledelle Moe: The Permanence of Impermanence
Ledelle Moe’s monumental concrete and steal sculptures are an ambiguous amalgam of somnolent organic figure and rolling landscape. She is fascinated by the contradictory “permanence” of concrete juxtaposed with notions of transience, fluidity and change. Having recently returned to live in South Africa again after 19 years in the US, Ledelle is exploring issues of belonging, ownership, displacement and memory in her work by using aggregates from different places in South Africa.
Lara Klawikowski: Wearable Art
Lara Klawikowski is a Cape Town-based fashion designer whose aesthetic is inspired by nature and the organic qualities of fabric. She describers her designs as “wearable art”, which are characterised by advanced construction, unusual draping and tailoring techniques and the re-purposing of fabrics and materials. She says: “Both fashion and art are the result of inspiration and the more authentic the inspiration, the more powerful the result. When you wear fashion, you are literally wearing someone’s idea, inspiration and art. I try to diffuse my concepts as little as possible and keep the garments I create close to the original inspiration.”
David Southwood: Peripheral Economies and the Urban Landscape
Born in Pietermaritzburg, David Southwood has been a practicing photographer for over a decade – roughly the same amount of time he has spent observing, participating in and photographing the Milnerton flea market. In 2011 a collection of these photographs were published by Fourthwall Books, forming a powerful record of an outskirt economy seeking to earn a living through trade in secondhand goods.
Making up another notable portion of his body of work is Roads to Places, which is divided into the series Nothing in Particular, In Between and N1 Highway. For the latter (exhibited at Whatiftheworld gallery in 2012) David avoids the spectacular or obvious to present an awkward, often empty public stage comprised of events, personalities and traces of habitation encountered while travelling the N1.
His most recent project, Stowaways, examines the lives of a community of Tanzanian stowaways living under the National Road One in Cape Town – a collection of images that now exist as a broadsheet newspaper (with text by Sean Christie) called Memory Card Sea Power.
Following on from the recent release of the music video for iJusi directed by Gregor Lehrl, we’re going even deeper into the mind of Okmalumkoolkat’s Smiso Zwane with a music video for the track Allblackblackkat – this time directed by the Johannesburg-based photographer and filmmaker Chris Saunders. Playing with memory, reality and generational shifts, the music video is loosely based on a Zulu cleansing ritual (which Okmalumkoolkat experienced growing up) performed on a male family member before funerals. Through the visual direction of Saunders, this traditional ceremony is contrasted with other South African modern sub-cultural influences which have manifested Okmalumkoolkat’s own sound and dance.
Figures and Spaces, Two Series of Film Photographs by Gabriella Achadinha
While travelling through Barcelona and Lisbon in the height of the summer holiday madness and armed with a stock of 35mm film, Gabriella Achadinha shot two series of photographs investigating space and figures. Though there is a certain relation between them in regards to a moment of stillness within two holidaying destinations, each series stands comfortably on its own – one focusing on figures in relation to these spaces, and the other on the landscape and urbanscape.
The first is titled Figures, and of this series Gabriella says that “traveling alone awakens one completely to the feel of a land; the interaction between locals, the chaos tourists find themselves in, the subtle language between people and spaces. Lonesome figures are increasingly pronounced and moments of contemplative silence in places of extreme hustle become revered.”
In the second series, Spaces, Gabriella “wanted to explore an understated side of these two Iberian paradises of culture, sun and architecture. Moments of saudades in spaces that were once frequently visited, snippets of internal reflection felt in limbs and positioning, a voyeuristic visual diary of watching those around and their relationship with place.”