Nicholas Hlobo

Art on this day

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“There has been a strong curatorial focus on Africa in European museums recently with the Zeitz Museum of Contemporary Art Africa (in Cape Town) opening." says Rachel Lehmann, Founding Partner of Lehmann Maupin, New York and Hong Kong. The gallery especially highlights South African artist Nicholas Hlobo whose works are now part of On Site during FIAC in Paris.

 

Nicholas Hlobo (b. 1975) is a South African artist based in Johannesburg, South Africa. He earned a Bachelor of Technology from Technikon Witwatersrand in 2002. He creates large sculptural works that are expansive masses which at once feel oozey, voluptuous and highly structured. The contrast of femininity and masculinity is created by his use of dissimilar materials such as rubber inner tubes, ribbon, organza, lace and found objects.
 
His own multi-faceted personal identity is another prevalent theme in his work. His evocative, anthropomorphic imagery and metaphorically charged materials investigate issues of sexuality, gender, and class in the context of his South African heritage.

 

 

 

His work is included in numerous collections including the Foundation Louis Vuitton, Paris; South African National Art Gallery, Cape Town; SCAD Museum of Art, Savannah, GA; and the Tate Modern, London.

 

In addition to that, his new exhibition "Mphephethe uthe cwaka," 2017 (translated as "Blowing them in silence") is part of On Site during FIAC 2017, Paris, relating to the power of music and sound, particularly the universality of the horn. The title also has sexual connotations, echoed through the phallic bronze mouthpieces attached to each sculpture. Hlobo relates the act of playing the instruments to oral sex.