Lithography and screen-printing take central stage in print co_lab, an exhibition at the Michaelis Galleries that opens on 10 May. Co_lab features prints produced at workshops organized by the Africa South Art Initiative (ASAI) and the Michaelis School of Fine Art in 2018 and 2023, which were funded by the National Arts Council (NAC), the Department of Sport, Arts and Culture, and the Western Cape Department of Cultural Affairs and Sport. The project is in collaboration with the Katrine Harries Print Cabinet at the CCA, where a set of artist’s proofs from the workshops form part of the collection.
The exhibition features work by mid-career and late-career artists, mostly painters. Lionel Davis, Manfred Zylla and Sophie Peters are also known for their relief prints (lino and woodcut) and Davis, Patricia de Villiers and Xolile Mtakatya were active in the production of agit-prop screen printed posters during the anti-apartheid era. Others are best known for their work in other media - Ricky Dyaloyi, Zemba Luzamba, Tony Mhayi and Ndikhumbule Ngqinambi work principally as painters and Thami Kiti is a sculptor. Donovan Ward and Ayesha Price work in a wide-range of media, often in the form of public art. Almost all the artists have historic links to the Community Arts Project (1977-2008), as students and staff and (in Davis’ case) as a trustee, and several have worked extensively as educators, particularly in non-formal environments. For the majority of participants, the workshops provided an introduction to lithography and screen-printing, whereas for some it was a return to a technique they had briefly encountered before, or which they had seldom used for purposes of making their own art. Artists worked on themes of their own choice, with the results reflecting their diverse approaches and concerns.
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