Michael Stevenson's 13th annual summer exhibition will take on a fresh format in the gallery's new space in Woodstock. The exhibition will focus on 10 projects, some by well-known gallery artists - Nicholas Hlobo, Deborah Poynton, Nandipha Mntambo, Zanele Muholi, Youssef Nabil, Odili Donald Odita and David Goldblatt - and others by artists showing with the gallery for the first time: Paul Edmunds, Andrew Putter and Daniel Naudé.
Nicholas Hlobo's large-scale sculpture, Umphanda ongazaliyo, the focal point of his acclaimed solo show for the Momentum series at the ICA in Boston, will be installed in the gallery. Coinciding with this, Hlobo has a solo show at Tate Modern in London, opening on 10 December, part of a series of exhibitions by emerging artists.
Paul Edmunds will show new works that are part of a larger series to be exhibited at the gallery in late 2009. This body of work began with a story Edmunds wrote about growing up on Johannesburg's East Rand in the 1970s and 80s, and his relationship with surf and skate culture of the time. The works draw on the shapes, forms, materials and other concerns of this facet of popular culture, which Edmunds describes as 'always seeming to remain just out of my reach, but which have apparently branded themselves indelibly into my memory'.
Andrew Putter, in a new series of photographs, continues to explore the term 'Hottentots Holland', which was the starting point for his Spier Contemporary award-winning video installation Secretly I Will Love You More. Putter's photographs meticulously recreate 17th-century Dutch still-life paintings, but in these arrangements the flowers, vessels, rocks and insects are all indigenous to the pre-colonial Cape. We are reminded of the sad history of the Cape Khoekhoe and the Cape Dutch, who uneasily co-inhabited the proto-Cape Town of 350 years ago, and invited to imagine how different their encounters might have been.
Daniel Naudé, a recent graduate of Stellenbosch University, will show haunting portraits of the Africanis dog, a breed indigenous to southern Africa that lives at arm's length from humans. These photographs raise many questions about the wild and the domestic, and indeed the notion of what is African.
A large new painting by Deborah Poynton will be shown prior to her museum shows in Atlanta and Savannah early next year, which will be accompanied by a monograph. Poynton's related work included on our summer show last year has entered the collection of the Scheringa Museum of Realist Art in the Netherlands. In this overwhelming painting, measuring two by five metres, an older man and woman lie naked in bed contemplating their past and present relationships.
Nandipha Mntambo will exhibit a major new sculptural installation. A group of self-portraits by Youssef Nabil will be exhibited to accompany the release of his major monograph, published by Hatje Cantz. A new series of portraits of lesbian women by Zanele Muholi will be shown, as will works in David Goldblatt's ongoing Intersections Intersected series, including his poignant image of the new stadium in Green Point, Cape Town. Also on show will be two wall paintings by Odili Donald Odita.
As always, a selection of quirky and irreverent ceramics by Hylton Nel will be exhibited concurrently.
This exhibition concludes a successful year for the gallery, which moved to its new space in Woodstock in May. The year has seen the gallery take part in six international art fairs - Arco in Madrid, the Armory Show in New York, Joburg Art Fair, the Volta Show in Basel, Art Forum in Berlin, and Paris Photo - and once again our booth at the Armory was singled out as a highlight by the New York Times.
The exhibition will open on Thursday 27 November, 6-8pm, and close on Saturday 10 January 2009. The gallery will be open throughout the season except for public holidays. Gallery hours are Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm, and Saturday 10am to 1pm.
© 2008 Michael Stevenson. All rights reserved.