5 September 1996 to 19 October 1996
Salvage sculpture from South Africa
This exhibition of South African artists’ sculptures was created by Anne Carrington and supported by the London Arts Board and the Commonwealth Institute. These extraordinary sculptures, created from discarded materials and objects, provide a historical reference placing in context the ‘new’ concept of recycled art in Europe. Stunning docummentary photographs were an integral part of this exhibition.
The spirit with which the African continent assimilates Western junk into new forms was the inspiration for this exhibition. Southern Africa was chosen as a main focus because of its long history of creativity with its waste materials. The photographs in this exhibition record the broad range of the creativity of recycled art and artifacts – reflecting the regional and personal responses to available materials – be it a wall built from cola cans in Botswana or a pair of sandals fashioned from defunct inner tubes in a township market in South Africa.
The artists who participated in this exhibition are all from Southern Africa with diverse backgrounds, age range and artistic motivation. What unites them is their use of found materials and the way their sculptures (cars, humans, musical instruments, aeroplanes) reflect and communicate the culture that produced them.