Art Crosses Borders – Conversations exhibition at Con Hill

Photo: Supplied WORK TOGETHER: Founder of the Ichikowitz Family Foundation, Ivor Ichikowitz, works alongside artist and xenophobia victim Vika Mjoka to create artworks with the Alexandra youth.

Following the successful launch of the Ichikowitz Heritage Art Collection in Alexandra during Johannesburg Art Week last month, the foundation has decided to move the Art Crosses Borders – Conversations exhibition to Constitution Hill’s Old Fort.

Over 130 artists feature in the Ichikowitz Heritage Art Collection. The launch of the collection focuses on themes such as xenophobia, economic survival and portraits of Africa. The launch, which took place in Alex, was in partnership with art entrepreneur Vika Mjoka, himself a victim of xenophobia. Mjoka joined forces with the foundation to create Art Crosses Borders – Conversations.

“We encourage all to visit Constitution Hill, the historic symbol of our democracy. We hope this travelling exhibition inspires our collective imagination and provokes creative practices to solving the challenges of today,” said the foundation’s Ivor Ichikowitz.

The exhibition will include works from artists such as David Koloane, Sicelo Khumalo, Brian Kadzinga, Mike Khali and many more and aims to promote the use of art as a tool to fight xenophobia. This is done by using contrasting mixed-media works showing scenes from violent struggles in townships, to primitive African masks and harrowing models that provoke questions around identity.

“This exhibit brings the dynamic talent from Alex to the inner-city and offers viewers a glimpse into the country’s shared past and future. These are lessons for what we can do to take the future into our own hands and shape it into the image of the Freedom Charter and our Constitution,” said Constitution Hill acting CEO, Themba Ntuli.

The Ichikowitz Family Foundation wants to help advance Constitution Hill’s efforts to rejuvenate inner-city Joburg by encouraging inner-city residents, business people, students, youth and artists to immerse themselves in an uplifting creative programme of workshops which will energise citizens with art as the impetus for dialogue, education and nation-building. The foundation has a high school programme with workshops that are headed up by artists from the exhibition.

Art Crosses Borders – Conversations will be on show from 29 October to 15 November at the Old Fort at Constitution Hill. Entrance into the exhibition is free.


Victoria Taylor

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