The second Members exhibition for members of Thapong Visual Arts Centre is currently on display at the art centre. The exhibition was officially opened on Thursday last week, and it paves way for the highly anticipated annual Thapong Artist of the Year (TAYA) slated for end of the year.The exhibition gives artists an opportunity to polish their skills, techniques as well as concept ahead of the highly competitive TAYA that draws participation from artists who are members of the centre in different visual art disciplines. A dozen pieces form part of this exhibition, all telling their own stories. Something worth noting with this exhibition is that new faces in the arts are dominating the gallery, with many pieces adorning the walls of the gallery. A small number of established artists form part of this exhibition.
For those who have a bit of time on their hands, take a drive or a walk to Thapong and appreciate the beauty of the visual art and marvel at the works of artists such as Segametsi Chabo with a collection of her leather bags, Lorato Ratlhorwana who is all about showing off what one can do with fabric patches, Sebasa Koketso with sculpting, Saroj Shukla with acrylics, as well as Phenyo Saidoo whose medium is painting on fabrics.
The Coordinator of the centre, Reginald Bakwena explains that an interesting development with this exhibition is that upcoming artists are dominating. In total, he says there are close to 55 artists who are showing their works at the gallery. He also says that this is a positive development, and it shows that they are on the right direction.
“They are showing off new concepts. We strongly believe that giving artists platforms such as members’ exhibition will improve their work, and it also readies them for TAYA,” says Bakwena. However, he notes with disappointment that the representation of women at the exhibition is low.
“Only a small number of them participated in the exhibition, and what they are failing to capitalise on is the fact that this will go a long way in preparing them for the highly competitive TAYA,” explains Bakwena. Quizzed about the standard of the works displayed at the exhibition, he notes that what one should remember is that the members’ exhibition always strives to give artists a platform to showcase their work, and that they always encourage their members to be part of the exhibitions.
Meanwhile, a workshop is in the pipeline ahead of TAYA.