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Don't miss 'An Endless Night' art exhibition at Mount Nelson in Cape Town

Anelisa Mangcu has curated her second exhibition titled ‘An Endless Night’ at the Mount Nelson Hotel in Cape Town

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By Yashna Balwanth | August 15, 2023 | Art

The Belmond Mount Nelson Hotel provided the perfect backdrop to display Anelisa Mangcu’s second exhibition in partnership with Investec Cape Town Art Fair.

‘An Endless Night’, as the exhibition is aptly named, expresses time as its running theme with ideas related to past, present and future, including the ever-important concept of change that comes with the passing of every hour in every day.This also leaves the art open to interpretation as you insert your own ideas, experiences and cultural background into the way it is consumed. The pieces exhibited make up an extraordinary collection, whose juxtapositions comment on geographic, gender and historical specificities of time.

Artwork by Anico Mostert. Image: Supplied
Artwork by Richard Templeton Smith. Image: Supplied
Artwork by Trevor Stuurman. Image: Supplied

Referencing the everyday, Anelisa’s perspective hones in on the pressure of ordinary existence. ‘We fill up our time with tasks, purpose, duty and creating memories, in hopes of taking our subjective existence seriously with intrinsic value. This way, we create value by affirming time and living it, and not simply obsessing over its passing. Time is our scarcest resource. It is completely non-renewable. The artists in this exhibition were encouraged to explore the passage of time that allows questions to unfold, characters to be drawn and findings to be resolved.’

Artwork by Mary Sibande. Image: Supplied
Artwork by Ayogu Kingsley. Image: Supplied

One thing humanity can all agree on is its intrinsic direction or order: past, present and future. How we experience time is not linear, because life is a subjective experience. What is similar is the desire to prolong our experience of time, and the attempt to find ourselves closer to a climactic moment in our narrative. We have a natural desire to extend the duration of anticipation, to linger and savour all the elements that go into the build-up of our lives, while acknowledging the detours and setbacks. It is this very experience that ties us together.

‘There’s a man all over for you, blaming on his boots the fault of his feet’– Waiting for Godot by Samuel Beckett.

This quote demonstrates the fundamental part of human nature and our reluctance to accept the role we play in our demise/success and constructive/non-constructive use of time.We are all given a set of tools to use,and are tested by our belief system or lack thereof, to investigate our gifts, our lacks, our limits and understanding of the powerful finite territory of the present. The artists in this exhibition were encouraged to explore the passage of time that allows questions to unfold, characters to be drawn and findings to be resolved.

The exhibition will be open up until 28 August 2023 and is open to the public.

This article appeared in the July issue of House & Garden. You can order a digital copy by clicking here.