Impressions from South Africa 1965 to Now
Encompassing black-and-white linoleum cuts made at community art centers in the 1960s and 1970s, resistance posters and other political art of the 1980s and the wide variety of subjects and techniques explored by artists in printshops over the last two decades, printmaking has been a driving force in contemporary South African artistic and political expression. Impressions from South Africa, 1965 to Now, published to accompany an exhibition at The Museum of Modern Art, introduces the vital role of printmaking through works by more than 20 artists in the Museum’s collection. The volume features prints by John Muafangejo and Dan Rakgoathe, whose vigorous, metaphoric linoleum cuts conveying social messages were cultivated at Rorke’s Drift Art and Craft Centre in the 1960s and 1970s, posters produced for anti-apartheid coalitions in the 1980s, and political work by Sue Williamson, Norman Catherine and William Kentridge, representing periods of apartheid resistance. More recent projects, including traditional etchings by Diane Victor, comic books by Bitterkomix, lithographs by Joachim Schönfeldt and Claudette Schreuders and digital prints by Cameron Platter, address ongoing social issues and explore new subjects. New linoleum cut projects by a younger generation of artists–Paul Edmunds, Senzeni Marasela and Vuyile Voyiya–demonstrate the relevance of the medium in South Africa today. Judith B. Hesker, Assistant Curator of Prints and Illustrated Books at MoMA, contributes an introduction, biographies of the artists, publishers and printers, and a timeline of relevant events in South Africa.