Catch SA artist Sunstrum @Tiwa

Catch SA artist Sunstrum @Tiwani in London this week

Pamela Phatsimo Sunstrum’s multidisciplinary work alludes to mythology, geology and theories on the nature of the universe. The exhibition will include a number of new drawings, a large window drawing and a new, previously unseen video animation. Pamela Phatsimo Sunstrum: Polyhedra, 1 April – 7 May 2016

Catch SA artist Sunstrum @Tiwa

Phatsimo Sunstrum was born in 1980 in Mochudi, Botswana, and currently lives and works in Johannesburg, South Africa. She has at times called various parts of Africa, Southeast Asia, Canada and the United States home. Motivated by her experiences in these diverse locales, Sunstrum explores how one’s sense of identity develops within geographic and cultural contexts. Her drawings, narrative landcapes that appear simultaneously futuristic and ancient, shift between representational and fantastical depictions of volcanic, subterranean, cosmological, and precipitous landscapes. Recent exhibitions and performances include FRAC Pays de Loire, France (2013), Brundyn Gallery, Johannesburg (2014), MoCADA, New York (2011), and at the 2012 Havana Biennial.

Pamela 540x417Gordon Glyn-Jones caught up with for a couple of quick questions:

You have lived all round the world. Given the migrations that look set to characterise the world over the next 50 years, what part would you say globally-minded artists have to play in this?
I think it is not only in the next 50 years that the movement of people around the globe will have far-reaching political, economic, cultural and geological effects…I think that these movements of people have already and always had these overarching effects. This is an idea I touch upon, at least symbolically, in my work: That humanity as we know it today arises not only from historical (that is, recorded) migrations of people, but out of an ancestral (that is, a primordial) tradition of moving, seeking and searching. I think the growing concern over the “impacts” of migration reflects a heightened fear surrounding the fragility of the constructs of wealth and political power. These constructs rely, in part, upon an unnatural attempt at containing populations that have always been in flux.

There is a growing momentum in the art press that suggests that international collectors are looking to invest in African art more. Has this been your experience? What are the artistic impacts of seeking an international audience?
I think many contemporary African artists are committed to occupying spaces and conversations in which we can grapple with the questions and impacts of our practices and our creative outputs on our own terms. I think the vibrancy, urgency and nuanced nature of these conversations has resulted in the ‘growing momentum’ of outside interest in what’s happening on the continent. I think this interest is to be expected, particularly since, for so long, the discussion (that is, the writing, contextualisation and categorisation) on the outputs of African artists has been directed by those outsiders who look in on Africa.

Pamela Phatsimo Sunstrum: Polyhedra, 1 April – 7 May 2016. More: here

If you are a Southern African artist living and working in UK, or taking part in a gallery exhibition outside of SA, please contact Gordon Glyn-Jones via contact: here