Live Virtual Auction, 11 - 13 April 2021

Simphiwe Ndzube; Inevitable Journey to Mars IV
Lot 486

Lot Estimate
R 150 000 - 200 000
Current Bid
Starting at R 130 000
Cape Town Office
Condition Report
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About this Item

South African 1990-
Inevitable Journey to Mars IV
acrylic and mixed media on Perspex print
120 by 240 by 3cm, unframed


“Ndzube’s work is characterised by his use of multiplicitous materials, artistic techniques, and stylistic choices – including painting, collage and assemblage – reflecting the equally multiplicitous and contentious socio-political landscape of South Africa. The performative stages and figures he assembles are created out of roadside construction site material and castoff clothing – thrown-away objects that the “nobility” of South Africa have discarded. His fantastical leaps of imagination and practicality mirror the techniques common to the bricoleur; like the figures in his carnivalesque processionals, he welds together both home grown and borrowed aesthetic principles, philosophies, and cultural theories. Through these bricoleurs’ bodies, Ndzube reflects on the ways in which South Africans struggle to face the impact of colonial and apartheid history on their fragmented families and communities, and how they attempt to heal the woundedness of their present. In employing a range of objects or ideas, Ndzube shows us that necessity forces him – and his performing figures – to appropriate and cast objects in new roles, subverting their intended and original social roles by giving them new meaning and uses. Through improvisation and tinkering, they make the most of what is available, despite the limitations of their material circumstances. Disjointed as their persons, bodies, and psyches may be, he – and his figures – attempt to fashion futures of their own making in the dystopian fringes of discarded-urban landscapes.”

M Neelika Jayawardane (2018), Precarious Bricoleurs: Simphiwe Ndzube’s Becoming,, accessed 22 February, 2021.

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