Simnikiwe BuhlunguMalebona Maphutse Kieron JinaINVADE
The story usually begins with a mythologised moment – beyond the edges of living memory – when all of this was but a tent-tussled town. A gold-glinting origin story memorialised in minds with shared desires. The promise of prosperity forged foundations while migrants laboured through the rest. Centred around extraction, exploitation, estrangement and alienation. A city of revolving reinvention, a constant oscillation between celebration and condemnation. Often framed as a space of crisis of spectacle, however, the subtler situated narratives of urban subjectivities are worth further exploring.
Johannesburg // Fragmenting Space and Time coalesces works by four multidisciplinary artists (Boipelo Khunou, Simnikiwe Buhlungu, Malebona Maphutse, Kieron Jina) and one artist collective (INVADE), all of whom are situated in Johannesburg, conceptually reimaging modes of knowledge production and forms of spatial intervention.
The exhibition title is a nod to Malcomess & Kreutzfeldt text Not No Place. Johannesburg. Space and Fragments of Time (2013) in which the authors present the history of the city through exploring the various visible and invisible threads that hold the city together.
The exhibition cross-examines the city’s spatial politics – how bodies lay claim to contested spaces through time. Artists are invited to engage with three critical questions: How do identities (within the city) shift through time? What are the necessary conditions to allow our bodies to feel comfortable in the city? What modes of being have the potential to complicate ideas around margin vs centre, principal vs periphery?