First of all, Women's Day should be every day. In an ideal world, we would stop saying Happy Women's Day or Happy Women's month and just keep it at Happy Women. All. The. Time. Happy in every sense; no more body shaming, no more violence and abuse against women, no discrimination, equal opportunities where no woman is left behind and another biggie, equal pay. For women's month, Keyes Art Mile continues to take their hats off to South African women with an exciting programme for their next installment of Art & Design Saturday on 18 August. How women lead will focus on women creating success through excellence and creative collaboration as well as a talk and performance programme. As the saying goes, 'when women support each other, incredible things happen.'
An exciting feature of the programme includes an exhibition by Florine Demosthene. Born in the United States and raised between Port-au-Prince, Haiti and New York, Demosthene earned her Bachelor of Fine Arts from Parsons the New School for Design in New York and her Master of Fine Arts from Hunter College-City University of New York. Demosthene’s paintings and collages, look at the black female form and the stereotypes associated with the bodies of black women with the aim of constructing a new black heroine.
Another highlight of the programme is an exhibition by acclaimed South African artist, Penny Siopis. It showcases a series of original prints and a large-scale mohair tapestry that forms part of a larger body of work entitled ‘Shame’ produced by Siopis between 2002 and 2006.
Siopis created these works in collaboration with women-lead studios, Stephens Tapestry Studio and David Krut Print Workshop (DKW). Founded by Marguerite Stephens, Stephens Tapestry Studio has employed over 25 women since its beginnings in the early 1960’s. The Studio is renowned for its work with many different South African artists, including amongst others Cecily Sash, Edoardo Villa and Sydney Kumalo and William Kentridge.
The talk and performance programme is not-to-be-missed. Kicking off the talks programme is a talk by the dynamic co-founder of Women in Bloom, Nandi Dlepu aka Mamakashaka. She will give insight into this important conversation series featuring women who are “in bloom”, in many different areas of society.
Dr. Cobi Labuscagne, director of Artlogic and the FNB JoburgArtFair, manages Africa’s largest contemporary art fair. She was one of the founding team members of the art fair and has since launched the Sanlam Handmade Contemporary Fair and the Winter Sculpture Fair among other lifestyle events. After receiving her doctorate as a fellow at Wiser, she has continued academic work alongside her leadership role at Artlogic and is currently an associate researcher at GIBS.
Rounding off the spotlight on female creative entrepreneurs, is the popular event series, Ladies Wine & Design. LWD is an international initiative that was founded in New York by Jessica Walsh and is now run in over 180 cities around the world. The aim is to mentor and encourage women in the creative sector, through a free gathering which is centered around a new theme each month. Ladies Wine & Design Johannesburg is hosted by Guiyani Monteiro and Roberta Thatcher, and the August event will focus on collaboration in creative spaces.
Talks and Performance Programme:
11:00 - Talk: Women in Bloom founder, Nandi Dlepu (Mesh Cinema)
12:00 - Talk: Yswara founder, Swaady Martin-Leke (Mesh Cinema)
13:00 - Talk: Artlogic and FNB JoburgArtFair, Dr. Cobi Labuscagne (Mesh Cinema)
14:00 - Performance: The Rare Library presents ‘The Gatherers’ in collaboration with L’MAD Guillotine (Keyes Art Mile Atrium)
15:00 - Talk: Ladies Wine Design explores collaboration in creative spaces.
Email [email protected] to book your seat
Visit Keyesartmile.co.za for more information
Images: Supplied; Instagram @Mamakashaka