Subscribe to our newsletter

Get the latest news, reviews, and commentary delivered directly to your inbox.

Support Hyperallergic’s independent arts journalism.

Posted inArt

Miami On The Move

MIAMI — As with any developing city the arts community is in continual search for large and affordable work and exhibition space. Miami’s Wynwood Art District and later Design District have been for over a decade hubs for artists and galleries moving into large warehouse and empty storefront spaces. Wynwood is less of a gun-wielding neighborhood and now full of restaurants, bars and coffee shops inviting collectors to hang around the area.

Posted inArt

USA and the Other

“Wow your accent sounds so amazing,” is a phrase I often hear when people detect my South African accent. Whereas this is usually a compliment — and I accept it graciously — it can also have the effect of creating a distance between me and the other person if they aren’t South African. In short, it can often clarify that they belong to this place and I am an alien in their territory. But as pop star Sting’s pithy “legal alien” phrase comes to mind I quickly snap out of my self-imposed victimization. Of late, however, it has been quite obvious that the art world still propagates a fascination with the “other.”

Posted inArt

The Anarchy of Die Antwoord

“I fink u freeky and I like you a lot” is the chorus line of Die Antwoord’s new rap/rave hit. It also sums up the way many people feel about Roger Ballen’s graphic photographs. These images have provided inspiration for many of Die Antwoord’s outlandish costumes and video backdrops, featuring prominently in the first hit single “Enter the Ninja.” Now they make up the set for the duo’s new “I Fink U Freeky” single video.

Posted inArt

Caribbean Black Identity and Sex

MIAMI — Historically, the relationship of the black identity to sex is loaded and remains a deeply complex conversation. Africa’s black identity history is marred by images of the “African Hottentot Venus” Saartjie Baartman who was put on display and sent across the world like a circus animal before being dismembered for study purposes following her death. This sexualized commodification of the human body underpinned the slave trade, which greatly impacted the entire Caribbean region.

Posted inArt

Business Class Art at JFK

JFK Airport, Queens, NY — On my way to Cape Town, South Africa I got bumped off my flight but upgraded to business on a flight four hours later. Free drinks and dinner in British Airways business class lounge and to catch up on some work poses no problems. Walking in to a new space I regularly take note of the art hanging on wall. At first glance the “toned down” works amongst the decor of the lounge appeared to be a traditional “hotel” selection and I was about to let it be when, on closer inspection, I realized I was surrounded by a collection of (admittedly toned down) work by some of the world’s leading artists.