by Lerato Dumse
Lillestrøm, Norway, is how successful South African photographer/artivist, Zanele Muholi, kicks off her traveling schedule for the year 2015.
Apart from on-going shows such as her Midsumma exhibition in Australia, titled Visual Activism. Black and White portraits from her lifetime project, Faces and Phases series will be installed at the Norway Centre between February 21 and March 29 2015. The work emanates from Muholi’s need to document and archive the existence of black lesbians, homosexuals and transsexuals in South Africa and beyond. The visual activist believes in making different sexual orientations and gender expressions common. The exhibition will be accompanied by debates and lectures all happening in consecutive days, as well as an opportunity to interact with the award-winning photographer.
Muholi has also been selected for the 2015 Outstanding International Alumni Award at Ryerson University, Toronto, Canada, where she completed a Master of Fine Arts degree in Documentary Media.
The University Gallery, Ryerson Image Centre, exhibited 36 of her Faces and Phases work between May and August 2014, with the aim of coinciding with the celebration of World Pride 2014, in Toronto.
Akershus Art Centre is an art institution that presents, mediates and debates contemporary art, through exhibitions in gallery and specific art activities. This awaited exhibition is curated by, Rikke Komissar, Liva Mork and Tor Arne Samuelsen and will reveal both old and new photographs by Muholi, including videos.
As usual, Muholi is travelling with a participant from the F&P series. Nonkululeko “Sicka” Mthunzi, a Hip Hop artist and reigning Mr. Lesbian Daveyton, is the latest participant to travel abroad. Muholi travels with participants as part of the, learn and share experience, which allows participants access impassable platforms, to self articulate, to learn from different cultures and further gain exposure.
This is not the first time that Muholi has shared her work in Norway. In 2013 she exhibited at the Kunstplass 5 gallery, while the Crown Princess of Norway Mette-Marit, graced the event with a special visit to the gallery to meet Muholi, as well as to see the, ‘I See Rainbows’ exhibition.
Among the many highlights anticipated in the year 2015, Muholi has been shortlisted for the much acclaimed, Deutsche Börse Photography Prize award. The nomination follows her latest photo book, Faces and Phases 2006-14. Her portraits are described as “tender and unflinching,” and coupled with testimonies of the South African LGBTI community.
Other awards won by this talented photographer include, the Index on Censorship, Prince Claus and Carnegie International Fine Prize 2013. Muholi has participated in a number of large exhibitions, like dOCUMENTA 13 (2012), the 2013 Venice Biennale, and DakArt 2014. She is an honorary professor at the University of Arts/Hochschule für Künste Bremen in Germany.
For more information or to arrange an interview with Zanele, please do not hesitate to contact firstname.lastname@example.org or 060 478 9798.
Muholi will be in Oslo from 11-26 February 2015.