Zanele Muholi at MICA
Monday, September 24
6:00 pm - 7:30 pm
Aperture Foundation and Maryland Institute College of Art are pleased to present an artist talk with Zanele Muholi.
Zanele Muholi is a South African visual activist. For over a decade Muholi has documented black lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex people’s lives in various townships in South Africa. Responding to the continuing discrimination and violence faced by the LGBTI community, in 2006 Muholi embarked on an ongoing project, Faces and Phases, in which Muholi depicts black lesbian and transgender individuals. These arresting portraits are part of Muholi’s contribution towards a more democratic and representative South African homosexual history. In a more recent ongoing series, MaID (My Identity) or, read differently, “maid”, Muholi becomes both the participant and the image-maker, as they turn the camera on themself. Experimenting with different characters and archetypes, Muholi’s self-portraits reference specific events in South Africa’s political history. Through exaggerating the darkness of Muholi’s skin tone, Muholi reclaims their blackness, and offsets the culturally dominant images of black women in the media today.
Solo exhibitions have taken place at institutions including the Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam / Autograph ABP, London: the Mead Art Museum, Amherst / Gallatin Galleries, New York; Open Eye Gallery, Liverpool / Brooklyn Museum, New York / Kulturhistorek Museum, Oslo / Einsteinhaus, Ulm; Schwules Museum, Berlin / and Casa Africa, Las Palmas.
Muholi’s work is included in the collections of the Boston Museum of Fine Arts / the Brooklyn Museum / the Carnegie Museum of Art / the Guggenheim Museum / the Museum of Modern Art New York / the San Francisco Museum of Art / the Tate Modern, London / the Victoria and Albert Museum, London and others.
Muholi lives in Johannesburg, South Africa.
Image by: Zanele Muholi, Bester I, Mayotte, 2015; from Zanele Muholi: Somnyama Ngonyama, Hail the Dark Lioness (Aperture, 2018) © Zanele Muholi, courtesy of Stevenson Gallery, Cape Town/Johannesburg, and Yancey Richardson Gallery, New York
This artist talk is sponsored by:
Undergraduate Photography Program, Aperture Foundation & Stuart Cooper (MICA Photography Alum “72)