Exposition

Malebona Maphutse: Mmamoloi, Moloi, Mamoloyi, Ba Re Wa Loya: F*#k Your Fake Ass History

Bag Factory Artists Studios, Johannesburg, South Africa
28 Mar 2019 - 18 Apr 2019

Malebona Maphutse_Botswela Masapo (the bones have spoken), 2019. Mixed media on unstreched canvas, 59,5 x 83,5 cm. Courtesy the artist and Bag Factory Artist Studios.
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The Bag Fcatory Artists’ Studios is proud to present Mmamoloi, Moloi, Mamoloyi, Ba Re Wa Loya: F*#k Your Fake Ass History (presented by Mamoloyi Healing Ministries), a solo exhibition by Malebona Maphutse, who was awarded the Bag Factory Young Female Artist Residency in 2018. The Bag Factory Young Female Artist Residency, funded by the Department of Arts and Culture, offers an emerging / early career female artist with a six-month fully funded residency at the Bag Factory Artists’ Studios, as well as a solo exhibition at the Bag Factory at the end of the residency period.

The settler makes history and is conscious of making it. And because he constantly refers to the history of his mother country, he clearly indicates that he himself is the extension of that mother-country. Thus the history which he writes is not the history of the country which he plunders but the history of his own nation in regard to all that she skims off, all that she violates and starves.” –  Frantz Fanon, The Wretched of the Earth

The concept of witchcraft (Boloi/Boloyi) stems from a demonisation of traditional beliefs and customs. There has been a taboo around what African spiritual and traditional practices represent which has set a preference for a Western-translated, transferred Christianity, thus creating a binary between the two in a South African context. This exhibition draws from the premise of religious syncretism to realise the links, crossovers and realistic manifestations as re-enactments of both belief systems in the context of Johannesburg and South Africa as a whole. Both belief systems have a space in which the supernatural is present; both have the power to achieve the impossible for those who believe and desperately need spiritual guidance, healing and possibilities for a better future.

Welcome to Mamoloyi’s Universe. As we see the world through Mamoloyi’s eyes, she takes us on a journey through History. We see her role as a matriarch, a heroine, and constant looming power throughout the past, present and future. We are here to travel through time with her. To experience the endless options and possibilities of her history and ideas about the universe.

Throughout this new body of work the artist narrates history through her works on canvas, sculptural installation, linocut prints, digital prints and video. Her digital collages and installations appropriate the visuals and language of street flyers, bitingly exploring the historical debt resulting from systemic oppression. Her work seeks to investigate how bodies transcend mere existence and encounter space, in order to understand the politics of space. Her inspiration lies at the zenith of infinite but probable options that can be drawn from these spaces. Through this form of investigation, she has gone on to explore a number of questions and situations that surround bodies. She is focussed on the ritual and spiritual engagements that take place in different spaces that inform a number of social, economic, religious and relational politics  in order to create time-landscapes. By embodying the fictional character of Mamaloyi, Malebona has begun to intertwine these politics in order to emphasise and rethink ways in which these bodies exist within, but are not limited to, a South African context

The exhibition is made possible by the Bag Factory Artists’ Studios Young Female Artist Residency, sponsored by the Department of Arts and Culture.

 

Malebona Maphutse (b.1994) is a Johannesburg based artist who has completed her BA (Fine Art) Degree at the University of Witwatersrand in 2017. She works in and outside of the academic institution. She enjoys reading, listening to jazz, hip hop, tranquil, reggae, soul, neo-soul, folk and kwaito music. She is also a poet and enjoys writing. Her work has existed in/at a number of exhibitions, spaces and happenings. She is currently interested in a number of forms of making which include printmaking and video art. She also enjoys drawing as an extension of her practice.

 

www.bagfactoryart.org.za

 

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