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Last weekend, artist Owen Maseko was arrested by police for an exhibition at the National Gallery in Bulawayo, Zimbabwe. According to the Associated Press:
… [he] collected family photos of missing people, images of mine shafts where bodies were believed dumped and reports on an armed uprising after independence in 1980 in the western Matabeleland district that was crushed by troops loyal to Mugabe. Thousands of civilians were massacred in the fighting.
Attorney Kucaca Phulu said that Maseko, his client, spent the weekend in jail on incitement charges after police shut down the exhibit in Bulawayo …
Voice of America describes one of Maseko’s controversial images [pictured above]:
The most striking image shows the late Joshua Nkomo and Robert Mugabe signing an accord leading to a unity government. In the painting Nkomo is slumped across the table, blood dripping from his shoulders. Behind the two leaders is a line of men all wearing dark glasses, whom many presume are members of the Central Intelligence Organization.
His wife, Sharn Maseko, told SW Radio Africa news:
… they have covered the windows with newspapers so that people are not allowed to see the exhibition from the streets and also the public are not allowed access to the exhibition, which is obviously very disappointing because as an artist you do art for the people. So to deny the people access to that art has a very negative impact to the art industry and on Owen as an artist.
Maseko’s exhibit was schedule to run through April.
This is the second exhibition closed by Zimbabwean authorities. Earlier that same week, a photography exhibition in Harare by Okay Machisa was shut down. The show depicted political violence in the 2008 elections.
The University of Virginia researchers wrote that the data “provides compelling evidence that these symbols are associated with hate.”
We are waiting for spectacle and when the quotidian, yet incongruous actions occur I wonder whether there is any real payoff coming.
Hear from Holly Jean Buck, Carolina Caycedo and David de Rozas, Simon Denny, Elizabeth Hoover, Renee Kemp-Rotan, Joseph Kunkel, and more at this free public event.
Tanega’s approach to mark-making comes across as stream of consciousness, as if she’s engaged in a conversation with herself.
Starting Monday, readers can borrow one of 50 rare and out-of-print titles, mailed to them completely free of charge, from Saint Heron Library.
EFA Open Studios offers a portal into the creative habitats of over 65 artists working in Manhattan’s longest-running studio program, including Dannielle Tegeder, Wafaa Bilal, Cui Fei, and Anina Major.
This is Yuskavage’s great gift, turning upside down our settled ways of thinking and seeing and, with ease, transforming the vulgar and ridiculous into the sublime.
51 international publishers and galleries showcase their latest editions in prints and artists’ books at this free public fair, which is fully online this year.
While hardly about the pandemic, or any of the other crises so afflicting us, all are invoked in this exhibition, which is also often tender and profoundly soulful.
These glowing, dynamic artworks reproduce something of Bosch’s chaotic energy, but on an immersive, multi-sensory scale.
This week, addressing a transphobic comedy special on Netflix, the story behind KKK hoods, cultural identity fraud, an anti-Semitic take on modern art, and more.