Corner of Church and Loop Streets
Monday – Friday
09:00 – 17:00
10:00 – 14:00 Visit Website
99 Loop shines a spotlight on a wide range of top emerging and established artistic talent from South Africa. On the corner of Loop and Church Streets, 99 Loop joins a number of other established and brand-new galleries on the same stretch, offering visitors a reason to linger and explore.
The classic 1800s façade conceals a warm, modern interior housing a revolving series of solo and group exhibitions of African art: paintings, sculpture & photography. 99 Loop’s sunlit ground floor is a space for more playful installation work. A new wing, designed by the team from Rennie Scurr Adendorff (who refurbished the Fugard Theatre in District Six), adds to the Gallery’s contemporary appeal, with over 100m2 of exhibition space, as well as a reading area and treed courtyard.
In this body of work Clare Menck happens upon a tongue-in-cheek Garden of Eden theme when she arrests the viewer with her voyeurist gaze upon couples that pose (and yet do not pose), conscious of a viewer, and yet very much self-absorbed.
The Pierot/Pierette reference (two french servants of the late 17th century who are moon-struck eternal lovers, usually depicted as melancholic, sad, and too romantic) and the Adam/Eve (Eve/Eve) dicotomies are explored in some of the work, keeping Watteau's 'fin de siecle' melancholy in mind for Menck's translation of her own era.
The idea of paradise arrested or paradise threatened (expultion from paradise here symbolised by the turning away from the viewer of several single male figures) is further fleshed out in the series of hounds around pools with their uncanny, listless, hovering poses of unpredictable mood.
Valentine’s latest body of work aims to reveal various paradoxical experiences in his daily life. Personal confrontations between life and death, joy and anxiety, gain and loss triggers the dichotomous identity of “A Trap for the Escape Artist”.
These internal contradictions around meaninglessness, madness and spirituality informs the sizeble paintings in the exhibition - some of the biggest works ever painted by the artist. Valentine remains true to his background as a muralist by accentuating elements in some work through the use of spray-paint on cityscapes.
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