In the opening installment of the Visual Century Collection, the division of South African culture is shown through the polarization of art forms within South Africa. Visual Century: South African Art is a four-volume publication that reappraises South African visual art of the 20th century from a postapartheid perspective. It is the only publication that provides an overview of a century of South African art, with in-depth discussion by leading art historians and reproduction of a large number of artworks, providing readers with fresh perspectives on complexities that still resonate today. The first volume in this series begins after the South African War when efforts were made to unify the white 'races' and the period encompasses two world wars, the incremental dispossession of the rights of black South Africans, and the rise of organized black South African resistance to white rule. This volume provides critical perspectives on the ideological and institutional frameworks for white and black artists of the period, and the art they produced. Discussions of public art and architecture, traditionalist African art, and Western-style painting and sculpture are complemented with consideration of the roles played by museums, training, art societies and exhibitions, art historical writing, and patronage.
In the third volume of the Visual Century Collection, the national struggle for democracy is juxtaposed with the challenging art of the time period. Visual Century: South African Art is a four-volume publication that reappraises South African visual art of the 20th century from a postapartheid perspective. It is the only publication that provides an overview of a century of South African art, with in-depth discussion by leading art historians and reproduction of a large number of artworks, providing readers with fresh perspectives on complexities that still resonate today. Bracketed by porous transitional moments in the early 1970s and 1990s, this third volume covers a period characterized by a deepening of the struggle for democracy, a time when historical preoccupations with race were increasingly complemented with growing discourses on class and gender. The chapters address the multiplicity of ways in which artists responded directly and indirectly to the challenges of this period, mostly as individuals but also through organizations. Resistance and complicity, and the spaces between, found expression in the use of everyday themes, biblical sources, ethnically derived themes, subtle and extreme forms of humor, as well as through representations of conflict are all explored. This is a period when challenging art was produced in community arts centers, universities and in public places, a time when the cultural boycott simultaneously united and polarized artists, and exiles mediated the ambivalences of 'home.'
South African artist William Kentridge's drawings, films, books, installations, and collaborations with opera and theater companies have established him as a world-class star in contemporary art, media, and theater. In 2010, and again in 2013, he staged Dmitri Shostakovich's The Nose at the Metropolitan Opera; after the premiere, the New York Times noted that "Kentridge, who directed this production, helped design the sets and created the videos that animate the staging, received the heartiest bravos." In this book, Jane Taylor, Kentridge's friend and frequent collaborator, invites us to take an extraordinary behind-the-scenes look at his work for the show.
Kentridge has long been admired for his unconventional use of conventional media to produce art that is stunning, evocative, and narratively powerful--and how he works is as important as what he creates. This book is more than just a simple record of The Nose. The opera serves as a springboard into a bracing conversation about how Kentridge's methods serve his unique mode of expression as a narrative and political artist. Taylor draws on his etchings, sculptures, and drawings to render visible the communication that occurs between his mind and hand as he thinks through the activity of making. Beautifully illustrated in color, William Kentridge offers striking insights about one of the most innovative artists of our present moment.