Please join us for the opening of Under Construction, a solo exhibition by Chrisél Van Der Merwe on Thursday 5 July 2018 at 6pm at 153 Smit St, Braamfontein.
Under Construction is an exhibition that takes shape in the form of experimental printmaking, sculpture and installation. In this exhibition, Chrisél investigates her relationship to the city of Johannesburg as a young female artist, a fairly new resident of the city and person moving through the socially constructed spaces of the city.
With new development, and decay of the old, the city is in constant flux, its boundaries are forever mutating. Once bounded and shaped, this socially constructed space, in turn, also influences social relations. The city is socially produced and is socially reproducing.
Chrisél uses the medium of printmaking to create an archive of her exploration of the city. Her copper plates are engraved by the forces applied to them on construction sites – spaces that show the changing nature of the city. Almost as innocent bystanders, the plates capture the energy, memory and history of the city in a specific place and time. In this fluid urban context, renewal and erosion are the concurrent themes in the prints, sculptures and installations on display.
In turn, Chrisél uses installation as the embodiment of the in-flux spaces of Johannesburg. The installation pieces on the show include pieces of wall from demolished buildings and materials found at the sites she frequents in her explorations. For the duration of the show, she will keep nurturing and engaging with these materials as she continuously refines, re-polishes and reassembles them. She embraces the masculine materiality and space associated with construction-sites and reforms them with her own female view, subtly referencing the gender politics of urban space.
Dates: 5 – 28 July 2018
Times: Wed – Fri – 10am – 4pm
Sat 9am – 1pm
Venue: 153 Smit Street, Braamfontein
Chrisél van der Merwe was born in 1994 in South Africa. She received her BA Fine Arts degree from the University of Pretoria in 2016. She has been part of the Golden Key Honour Society since 2014. Van der Merwe was selected as a Sasol New Signatures finalist in 2016 and 2017. In 2017 she was chosen to participate in the Assemblage Artist Career Development Programme as part of the RMB Talent Unlocked exhibition at the Turbine Art Fair. Thereafter she continued to showcase her work in multiple group shows around South Africa where her work has become part of various national and international collections. In 2018 she participated in the group exhibitions ‘Talking to Deaf Ears’ and ‘Unsettled’ at ABSA Art Gallery in Johannesburg. She had a solo exhibition titled ‘Architectus Konstruksie’ at the 2018 Klein Karoo Nationale Kunstefees (KKNK) in the Western Cape.
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