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Sunjung Kim’s Real DMZ Project Interrogates the North and South Korea Divide Ocula Conversation Sunjung Kim’s Real DMZ Project Interrogates the North and South Korea Divide

Ongoing since 2012, the Real DMZ Project interrogates the demilitarised zone (DMZ) between North and South Korea through annual, research-based exhibitions that bring together the works of Korean and international artists. Sunjung Kim, the independent curator behind the project, conceived the idea of exploring the DMZ while curating Japanese artist...

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Frieze Week Lowdown: London Shows to See Ocula Report Frieze Week Lowdown: London Shows to See 20 Sep 2019 : Tessa Moldan for Ocula

London's galleries and museums are gearing up for a lively October, with Frieze London and Frieze Masters running between 3 and 6 October 2019 at Regent's Park, along with 1-54 Contemporary African Art Fair, taking place across the same dates at Somerset House; and the tenth anniversary of the Sunday Art Fair, showcasing new and emerging artists...

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Mark Bradford’s Call for Unity at Shanghai’s Long Museum Ocula Insight | Video Mark Bradford’s Call for Unity at Shanghai’s Long Museum 16 August 2019

Mark Bradford walks through Mark Bradford: Los Angeles Mark Bradford: Los Angeles at the Long Museum West Bund in Shanghai (27 July–13 October 2019) is the artist's largest solo exhibition to date in China. In this video for Ocula, Bradford and Diana Nawi, curator of the show, walk through selected works that convey the artist's concerns with...

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William Kentridge

b. 1955, South Africa

William Kentridge is a South African artist and draughtsman of Jewish and Lithuanian descent who presents the struggles and emotions of post­-Apartheid South Africa through a multitude of forms, notably  his animated films of charcoal drawings, as well as sculpture, tapestry, opera, and various other media. Through the 1970s, Kentridge studied politics and African studies, as well as fine arts in Johannesburg, and was also heavily involved in theatre. This laid a solid foundation for the structure of his work, informing the dramatic and rather jarring subject and narrative, and also influencing the means of approach and production.

There is an emphasis on process in his work. Kentridge points out that the viewer can pick up on the labour that has gone into his creative work, which adds  a sense of value and honesty to the piece, as they can 'sympathise' with an object or artwork. Kentridge’s painstaking approach to making his films is a visceral part of the work, as the series of drawings used are put on display alongside the film. This ‘process’ helps to give grounding and added weight to his expressionist style, which often deals with tragedy and graphic, uncomfortable subject matter. An example of this is History of the Main Complaint (1996), which shows a figure being violently beaten and the resulting injuries in an x-ray.

As a member of the South African Resistance Art movement of the 1980s, Kentridge’s work was virtually unknown outside his country, but he has since established an international reputation, exhibiting his drawings and films at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (2009), the Philadelphia Museum of Art (2008), and the Museum of Modern Art, New York (2004). He has also taken part in the Sydney Biennale on two occasions, 1996 and 2008, and also the documenta, in 1997 and 2002.

William Kentridge resides and works in Johannesburg, South Africa.

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Featured Artworks

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Shadow Figure IV by William Kentridge contemporary artwork
William KentridgeShadow Figure IV, 2016 Bronze, oil paint
70 x 100 x 60 cm
Goodman Gallery
Cape Silver (Medium Scale) by William Kentridge contemporary artwork
William KentridgeCape Silver (Medium Scale), 2018 Bronze
41.7 x 33.5 x 26.4 inches
Goodman Gallery
Cat by William Kentridge contemporary artwork
William KentridgeCat, 2019 Bronze
27.6 x 43.6 x 60.2 inches
Goodman Gallery
Drawing from Waiting for the Sybil (Trees I) by William Kentridge contemporary artwork
William KentridgeDrawing from Waiting for the Sybil (Trees I), 2019 Indian ink on found paper
40.2 x 60.2 inches
Goodman Gallery
Ubu Tells the Truth by William Kentridge contemporary artwork
William KentridgeUbu Tells the Truth, 1996–1997 Animated Film, 35mm film, DVD and video transfer, 7 min 9 sec
Goodman Gallery
Lexicon Medium Bronze (Knight) by William Kentridge contemporary artwork
William KentridgeLexicon Medium Bronze (Knight), 2018 Bronze
93 x 106 x 53 cm
Marian Goodman Gallery
Carrier Pigeon by William Kentridge contemporary artwork
William KentridgeCarrier Pigeon, 2019 Bronze
92.2 x 130 x 50 cm
Goodman Gallery
Open (Medium Scale) by William Kentridge contemporary artwork
William KentridgeOpen (Medium Scale), 2018 Bronze
110 x 55 x 40 cm
Goodman Gallery

Current & Recent Exhibitions

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Contemporary art exhibition, Group Exhibition, I’ve grown roses in this garden of mine at Goodman Gallery, London
Upcoming
3 October–2 November 2019 Group Exhibition I’ve grown roses in this garden of mine Goodman Gallery, London
Contemporary art exhibition, Group Exhibition, Acts of Reading at Goodman Gallery, Cape Town
Closed
25 May–13 July 2019 Group Exhibition Acts of Reading Goodman Gallery, Cape Town
Contemporary art exhibition, William Kentridge, Let us Try for Once at Marian Goodman Gallery, New York
Closed
1 March–20 April 2019 William Kentridge Let us Try for Once Marian Goodman Gallery, New York

Represented By

In Ocula Magazine

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Art Basel Lowdown: Shows to See Ocula Report Art Basel Lowdown: Shows to See 6 Jun 2019 : Tessa Moldan for Ocula

To coincide with Art Basel 2019, which opens to the public from 13 to 16 June, galleries and institutions across the city are presenting a range of stellar exhibitions. From Rebecca Horn at Museum Tinguely to Geumhyung Jeong at Kunsthalle Basel, here is a selection of what to see.William Kentridge, Dead Remus (2014–2016). Charcoal on found ledger...

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Armory Week Lowdown: Shows to See Ocula Report Armory Week Lowdown: Shows to See 2 Mar 2019 : Sharmistha Ray for Ocula

The Armory Show opens to the public on 7 March (running to 10 March 2019)—just about a week after the fair relocated a portion of its 194 exhibitors due to structural issues found in Pier 92, forcing its sister fair Volta to cancel its 2019 show so that Armory could occupy its Pier 90 venue. Despite the upheaval, New York's art week is going...

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William Kentridge Ocula Conversation William Kentridge Artist

For over 20 years, the legacies of colonialism have been recurring themes in William Kentridge's work. In 2018, he was awarded an honorary doctorate degree from the University of Pretoria in South Africa in recognition of a practice that has consistently charted 'a universal history of war and revolution, evoking the complexities and tensions of...

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Golden Jubilee: Art Brussels Ocula Report Golden Jubilee: Art Brussels 27 Apr 2018 : Denis Maksimov for Ocula

At the entrance of the fiftieth anniversary edition of Art Brussels (19–22 April 2018), Iván Navarro's Sediments (2017) at Galerie Templon's booth offered an appropriate 'welcome' into the bottomless world of an art fair—a world map rendered in lights that infinitely stretch into a void by way of an illusion created with mirrors. At La...

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In Related Press

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THAT WHICH WE DO NOT REMEMBER WILLIAM KENTRIDGE Related Press THAT WHICH WE DO NOT REMEMBER WILLIAM KENTRIDGE ArtAsiaPacific : 1 March 2019

As I looked through William Kentridge's That Which We Do Not Remember at Sydney's Art Gallery of New South Wales, led by the multimedia artist himself, it became increasingly apparent to me that Kentridge, often described as a distinctive and powerful voice in the global contemporary art realm, is both erudite and generous with his ideas.

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William Kentridge’s Real and Metaphorical Cages Illuminate a Protest on Deportation Related Press William Kentridge’s Real and Metaphorical Cages Illuminate a Protest on Deportation Hyperallergic : 16 August 2018

MILWAUKEE—The current William Kentridge exhibition at the Milwaukee Art Museum, More Sweetly Play the Dance, is an immersive 2015 installation: a 14-minute video loop projected on a series of eight screens, 130 feet long in total. The screens unfold like an accordion book, not quite aligning, leaving small gaps that create page breaks in the...

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William Kentridge and the forgotten victims of Africa’s Great War Related Press William Kentridge and the forgotten victims of Africa’s Great War Financial Times : 6 July 2018

Does art have the power to affect people’s view of war and politics? In the years during and following the first world war, art did its best to reflect the desolation and sense of waste prompted by the monstrous number of lives lost between 1914 and 1918. Art and literature portrayed a world that had fallen apart and lost its moorings to meaning:...

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Artists Launch Global Art Project to Confront the Rise of Right-Wing Populism Related Press Artists Launch Global Art Project to Confront the Rise of Right-Wing Populism Art Forum : 27 February 2017

More than two hundred artists, musicians, writers, and arts professionals from forty countries have pledged to take part in Hands Off Our Revolution, a global art project that will organize a series of exhibitions and other programming to confront the rise of right-wing populism around the world.

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5 new artworks by William Kentridge have recently been added to Ocula. Sign up to be among the first to know when new works become available.

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