Kirsten Sims on Saturn Return

Kirsten Sims, So on and So Forth, 2017, 111cm x 80cm. 

Kirsten Sims is a well known feature when it comes to Salon 91 and South African illustration. With a solo show in Toronto, Canada under her belt, Sims is back in action and starting 2017 with a bang. A preview of her latest scheduled solo show, Saturn Return, will feature at The Cape Town Art Fair in mid Feb. A little prequel to the main event, to be hosted at Salon 91 from the 21st June until the 29th July. Sims has the great ability to change the ordinary into  the extraordinary through her art. Taking inspiration from the everyday, she creates works that intersects the existing with the imagined, creating spaces and scenarios, that easily shifts from the whimsical to the dramatical. For a good show, put this on your calendar.

Last Updated on Monday, 06 February 2017 09:38

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BlueJackal-Howl for Entries

Lokesh Khodke's 1 page take on Rohith Vemula's final words.

Born in 2015 and based in India, BlueJackal  is a collective with a different take. Comprising of writers, artists, activists and researchers, they form a commonality that engage with the world through a broad range of creative and philosophical interests. The core members of the group comprise of Shefalee Jain, Lokesh Khodke, Vasvi Oza and Shivangi Singh. To them, BlueJackal is a forum, a platform through which they can explore their shared proclivities, as applied to illustration, comics and children's books. One permanent feature of this collective is an ongoing project titled: SITUATION COMICS. In which they propose an episode or a situation (in some cases it might be a fabulation) and ask for public engagement in the form of a one page comic. Situation Comics 1 can be viewed as an intersection between comics and history. A moment in time, as the situation proposed was a 1 page comic on the suicide note of student activist Rohith Vemula, who battled against the inherent caste structure and subsequent discrimination at the Hyderabad University in India. In this regard, comics can be employed as a multifaceted medium that engages critically with an episode rife with complexity, adding a different nuance to the dialogue surrounding Rohith Vemula's death. For SITUATION COMICS 2, they've proposed a soundpiece by Sun-Ra, titled: I seek a new world. Sun-Ra, is an Afro-American jazz-composer, poet and philosopher and can be viewed as one of the creators of Afrofuturism, a movement through which new, empowering identities could be envisioned for the marginalised. Closing date is 20th February 2017. 

An example of Situation Comics 1 by Lokesh Khodke. 

Last Updated on Wednesday, 01 February 2017 08:25

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Zoologica Fantastica

An ink drawing by David Griessel. 

For all those fascinated by the creation of alternative creatures in illustration, then the Zoologica Fantastica show at the Haas Collective might be just for you. The show kicks off on Friday the 10th of February, at 6pm. If you are in the Cape Town area, it might be a good idea to pop in and have a look at the strange imaginings of artists, Linki Lutz and David Griessel. 

The Exhibition invitation for Zoologica Fanstastica, a group show by Linki Lutz and David Griessel. 

Last Updated on Monday, 30 January 2017 15:00

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Dahl & Blake

The Twits (1980) by Roald Dahl, illustrated by Sir Quentin Blake.

Sir Quentin Blake's illustrations have become part and parcel of all things Roald Dahl. His distinct style has become iconic of the Roald Dahl identity and accompanying mythos, enhancing the author's wild narration with a spontaneous use of line that could capture both beauty and the grotesque. But it was above all in the ability of Blake's illustrations to carry humour, that allowed for this quirky, idiosyncratic partnership to occur between illustrator and author. Dahl's books often carry a heavy visual load, and here Blake proves to be a true master in that even his monochromatic drawings carry a similar energy and weight as Dahl's text. Here then, Blake's illustrations, though born of Dahl's written text, also becomes something in its own right, contributing to the overall reading experience of what constitutes a Roald Dahl story. For Blake, the use of line was where the message resides. Through the internalisation of Dahl's texts, he would hunt for spontaneity when it came to capturing the subjects of Dahl's stories, making them his own.

See here for an interesting take on Roald Dahl, the author, by BBC's Hephzibah Anderson. 

Or here for a more indepth take on the relationship between Sir Quentin Blake and Roald Dahl's partnership as author and illustrator. 

The Witches by Roald Dahl, illustration by Sir Quentin Blake. 

The Twits, by Roald Dahl, illustration by Sir Quentin Blake. 

The BFG, by Roald Dahl, illustration by Sir Quentin Blake. 

Sir Quentin Blake. 







Last Updated on Tuesday, 24 January 2017 12:44

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Drawing as Journalism

Jeroen Janssen - Doel. 


Comics Journalism is a powerful form of communication when it comes to global and local issues. Graphic Journalists have contributed some of the most compelling and substantial works on current news and international events. In an age where we communicate more and more through imagery, the notion of developing visual literacy has reached a greater imperative. The creation of visuals as a form of universal communication has become more apparant when looking at the plethora of creative and critical disciplines that are connected and shared through the image making process. When it comes to the development of visual literacy in the form of critical engagement with world we live in, then Drawing the Times is perhaps one of the best sites out there. It's a comics and cartooning platform with a specific focus on non-fiction stories. Scroll through, have a read, just from a stylistic perspective as well as the diversity of stories, it truly provides a different kind of reading experience on global issues. Here are some samples:


Gianluca Costantini - Aleppo is Hell (The siege of Aleppo).

Jules Calis -Violence and Misery reign supreme in the divided city of Hebron

Jeroen Janssen - Lets start a political party.

Last Updated on Thursday, 19 January 2017 08:25

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