The month of May witnessed the successful opening of SPEECHLESS, South African Comic Artists on the State of the Nation, currently on show at Erdmann Contemporary at 84 Kloof Street in Cape Town.The Erdmann Contemporary gallery, the CCIBA and AMAK have gone one step further and will be hosting a comic book market and colloquium on Saturday 20 June where passers-by will have the opportunity to buy local South African comics and rare comic book publications from all over the world.
Speechless curator Andy Mason will be trading classic underground, alternative and old new wave comix to swop for good quality mainstream graphic novels/trade paperbacks. Comics and graphic novel authors include Love & Rockets/Hernandez Bros, Daniel Clowes, Eddie Campbell, Joe Sacco, Jim Woodring, Julie Doucet, Adrian Tominee, Gilbert Shelton/Freak Bros, Spain Rodriguez, Anarchy Comix, R. Crumb/Aline Kominsky/Dirty Laundry, Last Gasp, Psycho, Zero Zero and more.
Thomas Ott's Dead End, Vertigo's Fairest featuring the writing of Lauren Beukes, Charles Burns' Skin Deep, Classic Mad Magazine, Al Jaffee, Love and Rockets, R. Crumb's Head Comix, Thor, Tintin, Asterix, Alex, Phantom, Sin City, Hyena, Epic, Heavy Metal, Peter Kuper's Stripped, Claire Bretecher's What a Life, Joe Daly's Dungeon Quest, Archie Birch's The Number One Game, Kit Beukes' Wrath, Jungle Jim amd even El Dorado for the serious collector.
The market begins at 2pm and the Colloquium, featuring Zapiro, Stacey Stent, Sean Christie and chaired by Andy Mason, kicks off at 4pm. Artists will be discussing issues arising out of the show, of which there are many. The Blah Blah Bar will be providing drinks (including a Speechless Cocktail), and Ferdinandos Pizza will be supplying special customised comic pizzas. What a treat!
Last Updated on Friday, 19 June 2015 05:27
Cropped illustrations by Jacopo Rosati.
After growing bored with his digital illustration portfolio, Jacopo Rosati decided to start experimenting with felt. The result is an explosion of bright colours and texture in a screen-based world where tactile and non-traditional-traditional media is making a massive comeback.
Last Updated on Thursday, 11 June 2015 04:59
Illustrations by Sarah Glidden.
We all have those moments when we bump into someone we know, may know or have met one time but have no idea how to greet upon seeing them again. Sarah Glidden's quirky series of illustrations manage to encapsulate the ins and outs of having to greet someone and our most typical responses. Going straight in for the hug? A simple wave of the hand - despite being ten centimetres away from the greeter in question? Glidden's got it covered.
Last Updated on Tuesday, 02 June 2015 05:32
Not too long ago law firm Adams & Adams released what the Design Indaba called a "legal gift to the creative community" catered specifically towards South African creatives. At the recent 2015 ACT | University of Johannesburg Arts & Culture Conference, Business and Arts South Africa CEO Michelle Constant challenged Mariëtte Du Plessis, senior partner at Adams & Adams law firm, to provide artists with access to a simple Non-Disclosure Agreement (NDA) they could use when pitching their concepts and ideas. Adams & Adams accepted the challenge and drafted a general NDA artists and creatives could use in such scenarios including when pitching to potential partners. Du Plessis stated:
South African creatives, whether they are artists, designers, actors, writers, stage/film directors or musicians, are remarkably talented... They should be acutely aware of the value of their intellectual property rights and ensure that they obtain advice before entering into sponsorship contracts.
Journalist Kelly Berman from the Design Indaba website writes:
And while these days there is a strong movement to make creative products shareable via the Creative Commons, artists and designers need to make a living from their ideas and products – and this often means protecting their work from being copied or stolen by others.
Last Updated on Monday, 18 May 2015 05:29
Left: Artwork by Alastair Findlay.
The CCIBA, AMAK and Erdmann Contemporary are excited to have received all artists' pieces for the much anticipated Speechless exhibition, South African Comic Artists on the State of the Nation, at the Erdmann Contemporary Gallery, 26 May—11 July 2015. We have mounted all pieces onto the wall and cannot wait to show you what we have in show. The opening reception will take place today, Tuesday 26 May, 6pm.
Troubled by the state of the nation and rendered speechless by the dismal vaudeville of the
President’s 2015 State of the Nation Address (SONA), South African comic artists present their
own personal State of the Nation Address Response (SONAR).
Free of captions or dialogue, these images are, quite literally, speechless – visual soundbites that
capture our present collective moment through the offbeat, quirky lenses of 26 comic artists.
From hard-hitting political cartoons to pieces of pure whimsy, Speechless presents a unique
picture of a society deeply involved in the challenges of transformation.
The 26 artists selected for Speechless include stalwarts of the political cartooning scene,
contemporary fine artists whose work references the realm of comics, seasoned comic strip artists
who work in the commercial realm, underground cartoonists and graphic novelists, all linked by a
common commitment to the disciplines of comic art, all with strong ideas about the state of the
nation and the role of the artist in times of civic stress.
Have a look at even more previews of the work so far.
Daniël du Plessis
Hanno van Zyl
Artwork by Archie Birch.
Artwork by Ray Whitcher.
Illustration by Zapiro.
In an exciting development the CCIBA can finally confirm the folllowing artists for the Speechless exhibition:
1. Alastair Findlay
2. Archie Birch
3. Ben Winfield
4. Brandan Reynolds
5. Chip Snaddon
6. Danelle Malan
7. Daniël du Plessis
8. Gerhard Human
9. Hanno van Zyl
10. Jesse Breytenbach
11. Karabo Moletsane*
12. Karlien de Villiers
13. Kit Beukes
14. Loyiso Mkhize*
15. Luntu Vumazonke
16. Mike Scott
17. Mogorosi Motshumi
18. Moray Rhoda
19. N.D. Mazin
20. Pete Woodbridge
21. Ray Whitcher
22. Roberto Millan
23. Stacey Stent
24. Su Opperman
25. Themba Siwela
See here a list of bios for the artists participating.
Findlay is a Johannesburg-based fine artist, cartoonist and illustrator who began his cartooning
career in the Afrikaans weekly newspaper Vrye Weekblad in the 1980s. He currently produces
weekly cartoons for Sunday Sun and Son and a daily cartoon for eNCA, as well as storyboards for
the film industry, illustrations and comics. In 2013 he self-published a collection of his comics
entitled 5 ½ Tragi-Comic Picture Stories.
Archie Birch works as an illustrator, designer and animator, mostly in the film industry. Creator of
the comic book series The Number 1 Game, a dystopian fable set in a future Cape Town, he works
with both digital and traditional media. Current work includes children's book illustration,
storyboards, landscape drawing and comics.
Ben Winfield graduated from Michaelis in 2010 with a BFA and a distinction in sculpture. He
currently works as a commercial illustrator and animator, producing work for a number of creative
studios. His work has appeared in a number of group shows and anthologies, including Graf Lit:
Urban Interiors (2014).
Brandan has worked as a newspaper illustrator and political cartoonist since 1995, drawing for The
Argus, Weekend Argus, Personal Finance, Rapport and The Weekender, and as daily cartoonist at
Business Day since 2002. His work has appeared in a number of group shows and anthologies,
including Don’t Joke! (2009), Just For Kicks (2010) and Graf Lit: Graveyard literature in Black &
Chip has worked as a political cartoonist and illustrator in Cape Town since 1987. He began his
political cartooning career in the UDF weekly newspaper, South, and later worked as resident
cartoonist at The Argus until 2014. Chip currently divides his drawing time between cartooning,
book illustration and storyboard creation for the advertising industry.
Danelle Malan is a Cape Town-based fine artist and illustrator with a BAFA from Michaelis (2010).
Alongside her design, illustration and book cover work, she co-produces the ongoing webcomic
Cottonstar, also released in instalments as a mini-comic, with her partner Ben Geldenhuys. She has
participated in several group shows, including Walk This Earth Alone (2012), Pieces & Puzzles
(2013) and BLIKSEM! (2014).
DANIËL DU PLESSIS
Daniël du Plessis is an illustrator, lecturer and comic book artist currently based in Pretoria. His
work has been published in Bitterkomix, i-Jusi, and the BD Africa Collection, and he regularly
contributes comic strips to the literature section of the Afrikaans Sunday paper Rapport. Recent
exhibitions include Those Who Wander (2014) at Salon 91, and Graflit: Urban Interiors (2014), both
in Cape Town.
Gerhard Human is a contemporary artist living in Cape Town. His work has a strong narrative
base, portraying social misfits, rebels and fantastical outcasts. He has participated in a number of
group shows and solo exhibitions in Cape Town, Johannesburg, Pretoria, Durban, Sydney and New
HANNO VAN ZYL
Hanno van Zyl is an independent artist, graphic designer and illustrator based in the collaborative
studio ‘Only Today’ in Cape Town. He works across disciplines, including illustration, typography
and identity design. His work is process driven and explores the underbelly of everyday South
African life, examining details often forgotten by dominant cultural narratives and popular
Jesse Breytenbach is a freelance illustrator and printer who likes to illustrate science books, write
comics, and print fabric. Her graphic novel, I Don’t Like Chocolate, was published in 2007 to critical
acclaim. Recent activities include building an animation machine from scratch, and making a music
video about robots.
KARLIEN DE VILLIERS
Karlien de Villiers is an illustrator, printmaker and painter whose graphic novel My Mother was a
Beautiful Woman (2005) has been translated into German, French, Spanish, and Italian. She has
exhibited in South Africa and Europe, including participation in Bitterkomix (Berlin, 2002) and
PICHA African Comics Showcase (2008). She is currently working on her second graphic novel, Die
Wildevroue, to be published in France in November 2015.
Kit Beast (Chris Beukes) is a genderqueer artist based in Cape Town. They down a number of
formative years doing sordid corporate illustration and animation as an Art Director, but are now
freelance and loose in the city. They live for comics.
Luntu Vumazonke is 22 and works from his home in Lower Crossroads, where he lives with his
mother and sisters. His comics have been published in This Life (Young in Prison South Africa,
2013-14) and GrafLit: Urban Interiors (2014) and his work has been exhibited in various group
shows. Art is his passion and he is determined to earn a living from it.
Mike Scott is a cartoonist and animator based in Plettenberg Bay, but currently working on a top
secret project in Cape Town. His animated music videos have been nominated three times for
‘Best Music Video’ at the SAMA Awards, and his One Million Views video for the pop group
Goldfish won Best Animation at the Short & Sweet Music Awards (Cape Town, 2015).
Mogorosi Motshumi describes himself as “a straight ahead pen and ink cartoonist.” His cartoons
first appeared in The Friend (Bloemfontein) in 1978 and subsequently in The Voice, Learn and
Teach, City Press and the Daily Sun. His strip Sloppy, in Learn and Teach magazine, was the longest
running township strip of the apartheid era. He is currently working on a three-volume graphic
autobiography, 360 Degrees.
Since founding the Igubu Collective in 2000, Moray Rhoda has been a powerhouse of the local
comics scene. He has produced numerous anthologies, exhibitions and events, and currently
coordinates the Open Book Comics Fest. As art director at Beat Comics, he produced the comics
Unicity, Mzansi Beats and Kasiwash. He subsequently established the comics studio They Did This!
and co-founded the South Africa/Australian collaborative anthology, Velocity.
Andy Mason, who draws as N.D. Mazin, has been making, publishing and writing about South
African comics since the 1970s. He has published several underground zines and anthologies of
comix and political cartoons, co-curated group exhibitions and comics events, and is a co-founder
of the CCIBA. His books include What’s So Funny? Under the Skin of South African Cartooning and
The Legend of Blue Mamba.
Pete Woodbridge, drawing as Pete Woo, is an illustrator, caricaturist and musician with strong
links to the local comic industry. He studied at the Art Director’s Workshop, has a qualification in
advertising and was head illustrator at Supa Strika Entertainment’s comics studio for many years.
He has mentored many young comic artists entering the industry. Currently infatuated with
monkeys, he is working on a book of monkey portraits.
Ray Whitcher is a comic artist and lecturer at Design Center College in Greenside, Johannesburg,
as well as a postgraduate supervisor at Wits University. He is the founder of Legionink, an NPO
dedicated to promoting comic art in South Africa, with a mission to convince people that comics
are more than just drawings on cheap paper. According to Ray, it’s an uphill struggle.
Roberto is a visual narrative artist and communications designer with an MPhil in Visual Arts
(Illustration) from Stellenbosch University. He has been digital colourist to Zapiro since 2013, has
published as a political cartoonist for Groundup.org and created South Africa's first published
LGBTIA comic strip, Squeers, for The Pink Tongue newspaper. He co-edited the inaugural issue of
GrafLit in 2013.
Stent has worked in the field of visual art, design, cartooning and animation since the 1980s. After
graduating from Michaelis, she taught in Canada before joining UCT where she worked until 2012.
She drew the iconic comic strip Who's Left in the Weekly Mail in the 1980's, and now does a
similar strip for Noseweek, alongside animation work for exhibitions and documentary films.
A masters graduate from Stellenbosch University, Su Opperman works as a fine artist, illustrator,
graphic novelist and curator. She serves the comic art community in a number of roles, including
coordinating the comic art unit of CCIBA, serving on the Open Book Comics Fest committee, and
curating for the POP the Culture talent incubator. Her co-curation of Speechless follows on from
2014’s GrafLit: Urban Interiors.
Siwela, who draws the daily political cartoon for The Citizen, is a Johannesburg-based cartoonist,
illustrator and fine artist. Over the years he has exhibited in numerous solo and group exhibitions
in South Africa and abroad and has a number of awards under his belt. His cartooning has taken
him as far as Switzerland and London on an exchange programme.
Zapiro is South Africa’s most awarded and most controversial cartoonist, having twice faced
lawsuits by President Zuma (both withdrawn). He began his cartooning career at the UDF
newspaper South and in 1988 went to study at the School of Visual Arts in New York, returning in
1991. Since 1994, his cartoons have appeared in Sowetan, Mail and Guardian, Sunday Times, The
Times and many other newspapers and publications.
Last Updated on Thursday, 01 October 2015 05:54