9 to 5: Do Artists Need Structure?
26 October 2019
Join us for the Opening of the Exhibition "9 to 5: Do Artists Need Structure?" by local artist Banele Khoza, ABSA L'Atelier 2017 Gerard Sekoto winner, at the Pretoria Art Museum (Wessels St, Arcadia, Pretoria, 0007), Saturday 26th October at 12h00. So join us for a glass of wine and some live painting with the artist.
The exhibition runs until 7 December, so do not miss it!
We wake up. Get ready. Pack our lunches, laptops and stationery. Lock the doors of our homes. We get into cars or walk to public transport, making our way to high-rise buildings and office parks. We make to-do lists, fill in spreadsheets, answer emails, make coffee, attend meetings, check Instagram, take bathroom selfies, make uncomfortable small talk, take smoke breaks and repeat until the clock strikes five. Then we make our way to taxi-ranks, bus stops, train stations or parking lots and start the journey toward home. There, we unravel into our full selves for a few hours before making it to bed before restarting the cycle. Everyday. Eight hours. Five days a week.
And so goes the humdrum nine to five song that Banele Khoza looks to ponder in his new solo show 9-5.
In addition to being a visual artist, Khoza is an entrepreneur, curator, former lecturer and the gallery director of the open studio and gallery space in Braamfontein, BKhz. While onlookers perceive his accolades with a rose-tinted yearning, Khoza is wary of encouraging them to romanticise the often unstructured nature of creative and cultural work.
With access to a home studio, Khoza’s work schedule often spills into ungodly hours that see him painting from the moment he is awake. “Not having a structure for myself means anytime is work time. And I've always been afraid of rest. It’s always seemed counter productive in a world that encourages and praises constant output,” adds Khoza. Unlike employment structures with labour laws in place, Khoza’s sporadic overtime as an independent artist is not awarded with a bonus or time off.
To create 9-5, Khoza sought to find out what would happen if he limits his creative output to the normalised nine to five schedule for two months.
Like the many who work in corporate spaces, Khoza will avoid taking work home by limiting his output to the paintings he makes on site at the Pretoria Art Museum. "I want to find out if I would hate it, I want to see if the frustration will translate into my body of work," explains Khoza when asked about the process.
Beyond this investigation, Khoza urges those who engage with 9-5 to consider the many layers that come with thriving in the cultural and creative industry. Alongside the creative agency that comes with making art, creative practice involves a number of unglamorous tasks. These include researching their subject matter, accessing the resources needed for creation, harvesting organic inspiration, ensuring marketability, becoming and staying visible, as well as filling out tedious paperwork.
Khoza will be painting at the museum’s largest hall, North Gallery & Dark Room. There he has created a space that simulates his studio in Braamfontein. Apart from works in progress, paint brushes, paint palettes, empty canvas and mason jars with murky water, Khoza will be bringing his work desk with him. By so doing 9-5 allows the museum’s visitors to witness his holistic practice unfolding in real-time. It speaks to the artist’s ongoing ethos of art democratisation where the art world’s unromantic behind the scenes are brought to the fore, giving the public a more informed understanding of the industry.
Participating: Banele Khoza
PRETORIA ART MUSEUM
Address: Cnr Francis Baard & Wessels Streets, Arcadia Park, Pretoria
Tel: 012 344 1807/8
Museum Hours: Tuesday to Sunday: 10:00 to 17:00. Closed on Mondays and Public Holidays
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