ART FAIRS

1-54 CONTEMPORARY AFRICAN ART FAIR | NEW YORK

Starrett-Lehigh Building, 255 11th Avenue, New York

Athenkosi Kwinana, Cow Mash, and Hazel Mphande

Curated by Els van Mourik

1-4 May 2024

Berman Contemporary is pleased to present the works of three female artists: Athenkosi Kwinana, Cow Mash, and Hazel Mphande at 1-54 Contemporary African Art Fair. The fair will be held at the Starrett-Lehigh Building, 255 11th Avenue for the first time, a premier property recognised as a creative campus for influential companies across fashion, entertainment, media, architecture, and design.

This year’s fair represents a diverse selection of galleries from Lagos and Lausanne to Miami and London. This expansion underscores the fair’s commitment to showcasing the richness and diversity of contemporary African art on a global stage.

FROM THE CURATOR

FEMALE VOICES with Athenkosi Kwinana, Cow Mash and Hazel Mphande

‘Their stories need to be told’, is a statement we hear quite often at the gallery. We cannot agree more while by learning about their experiences, we can gain new perspectives to understand and celebrate the role of Black women throughout the African history. Hopefully they will lead us to wonder: Who else has been left out of the history books? What can we learn from their stories? And how can we make space for the diverse narratives of Black women that are yet to be told? All three artists are dedicating their artist career to exploring the potential of the female voice. In the booth presentation of Berman Contemporary, we are weaving together their different perceptual modes to expand awareness and celebrate the possibilities in visual arts.

Cow MashCow Mash (Kgaogelo Mothepa Mashilo) (b.1994) is an artists and lecturer based in Pretoria. Cow inherited the family name of her maternal grandmother and uses her art to explore the significance of this inheritance, the ancient matrilineal descent pattern in contrast to the currently more known pattern of patrilineal descent. Cow’s interest in the maternal female lineage, is mirrored in her work through the connections of working on the land. Land is a source of identity, cultural heritage, and community involvement.

Athenkosi Kwinana

Athenkosi KwinanaAthenkosi Kwinana (b. 1995) is a visual art activist based in Johannesburg, South Africa. Kwinana works in both drawing and printmaking. As an individual with Albinism, she utilises an autoethnographic approach, intertwining her personal narrative and those of individuals with Albinism with her artistic inquiry. Through her artwork Athenkosi address the fact that many people with Albinism do not fit neatly into black and white categories and are likely to experience social discrimination and marginalisation.

Hazel Mphande

Hazel MphandeHazel Mphande, also known as Hazey Jane (b.1989), is a self-taught photographer based in Pretoria. While exploring various techniques and styles, Hazel has developed a strong affinity for self-portraiture. She has worked to strike a conversation about how black women’s imagery has been distorted in society by reshaping and reclaiming these representations for herself. Her work is a celebration of a new generation of black creativity, behind and in front of the camera, bringing a new set of references and experiences to image-making.

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