The thought provoking and boldly curated exhibition, I am because you are:  A search for Ubuntu with permission to dream heads the National Arts Festival in Grahamstown following a successful run at the Standard Bank Gallery.

The exhibition is a result of the visionary partnership of Standard Bank Gallery with renowned artist and curator, Usha Seejarim to present an inspiring show of art works lifted from the bank’s corporate art collection.

It comprises works of art by various leading contemporary and modern South African artists.

These include historic drawings by Dumile Feni, the striking work of Diane Victor and a number works by William Kentridge. There are also the poignant pictures of the late great, Thami Mnyele, young creatives like Hasan and Husain Essop, along with the works of Sam Nhlengethwa, and other great artists.

The work on exhibit is presented against the backdrop of South Africa’s current socio-political context which includes the twenty-four years of democracy as a nation and what would have been Nelson Mandela’s centenary – hence the inclusion of Johannes Segogela’s Mandela’s Birthday Party. The palpable greed in our political arena, for instance is illustrated in images such as The Minister of Enterprise by Chiurai Kudzanai.

The exhibition: I am because you are: A search for Ubuntu with permission to dream aims to encourage its viewers to contemplate the African values of Ubuntu in the context of South Africa’s contemporary conditions.

I am because you are: A search for Ubuntu with permission to dream is a visual mission to find Ubuntu, a pursuit of ideals perhaps forgotten in mindsets of frustration, anger and even embarrassment.  The exhibition thus draws from the word ‘Ubuntu’ as an African philosophy and human quality that as noted by curator Usha Seejarim “is not specific to South Africa, but common to many African countries.”

The Standard Bank Corporate Art Collection is one of the most comprehensive repositories of South African art in the world comprising of over 1200 works by over 250 South African artists. This exhibition is part of the bank’s continued commitment to supporting the arts through innovative and engaging exhibitions it presents at the Standard Bank Gallery.

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Curator: Usha Seejarim
Artists: Various, including William Kentridge, Gerhard Marx, Thami Mnyele, Dumile Feni
Venue: The Monument Gallery, Grahamstown
Dates:        28 Jun 2018 – 08 Jul 2018
Walkabouts: 29 Jun – 10am
01 Jul – 12pm
04 Jul – 2pm