May 24, 2018 - The Wanas Foundation - Wanås Konst - Not a Single Story
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May 24, 2018

The Wanas Foundation - Wanås Konst / The NIROX Foundation

Lubaina Himid, Vernet’s Studio, 1994. Photo: Stefan Baumann. Courtesy the artist and Hollybush Gardens. 

Not a Single Story
May 12–July 29, 2018

Nirox Sculpture Park
Kromdraai
24 Kromdraai Rd
Krugersdorp
1739
South Africa

niroxarts.com
www.wanaskonst.se
Facebook / Twitter / Instagram / Facebook / Instagram

Not a Single Story
May 12–July 29, 2018

Nirox Sculpture Park
Kromdraai
24 Kromdraai Rd
Krugersdorp
1739
South Africa

niroxarts.com
www.wanaskonst.se
Facebook / Twitter / Instagram / Facebook / Instagram

“I’m a storyteller. And I would like to tell you a few personal stories about what I like to call ‘the danger of the single story,’” with these words writer Chimamanda Ngozi Adichi starts her well-known Ted Talk. The talk is the starting point for Not a Single Story at Nirox Sculpture Park, South Africa, a collaborative project curated by Wanås Konst, Sweden, and the result of a dialogue between sculpture parks on two continents. Creating new works in the landscape, in this case in the Cradle of Humankind, a UNESCO world heritage site, the surroundings are an important influence and a framework for the exhibition. The works showcase contemporary issues and practices related to sculpture linked by the site and a conceptual concern—that of "the story." The story lends itself to a metaphor and carries endless possibilities.

By referring to a venue as a sculpture park and working in the landscape, one addresses an entire art historical canon on sculpture in general and on land art in particular. This history is a male history. As a response to a very singular art history, the majority of the artists in Not a Single Story are women, representing a rich diversity of perspectives. Focusing on living artists and on process, production and presentation, the exhibition brings together 25 artists and artist duos. Among them Gunilla Klingberg and Peter Geschwind has created Lifesystems, a large scale work sculpted in tarpaulin, space blankets and thermal bags, while Sethembile Msezane braided ropes of synthetic hair for Signal Her Return III and Zanele Muholi documents loss linked to hate crimes.

Combining emerging artists and forerunners, the participation of Yoko Ono who is often seen as the grandmother of conceptual and performance art, is notable. Esther Mahlangu has become iconic, bridging contemporary art and traditional Ndebele practices. Swedish Lena Cronqvist, whose career spans more than 40 years, puts the child at the center in her psychologically charged images. Another role model is Turner Prize winner Lubaina Himid who asks questions about the re-writing of the history. The exhibition is Himid’s first on the African continent. 

Other central elements of this project, linked to the exhibition, are workshops, talks and a comprehensive educational programming aimed at children and youth to expand understanding of life and art. The exhibition is co-curated by Elisabeth Millqvist and Mattias Givell, the leadership duo behind Wanås Konst in Sweden. The exhibition and the educational program are made possible with the support of The Swedish Postcode Foundation with additional support from the Swedish Institute, the Embassy of Sweden in Pretoria and the Swedish Arts Grants Committee.

With: Jane Alexander, Beth Diane Armstrong, Lena Cronqvist, Latifa Echakhch, Frances Goodman, Lungiswa Gqunta, Lubaina Himid, Bronwyn Katz, Marcia Kure, Gunilla Klingberg & Peter Geschwind, Marianne Lindberg De Geer, Mwangi Hutter, Esther Mahlangu, Whitney McVeigh, Nandipha Mntambo, Sethembile Msezane, Zanele Muholi, Caroline Mårtensson, Yoko Ono, Claudette Schreuders, Mary Sibande, Ayana V Jackson, Sophia van Wyk, Nelisiwe Xaba. 

Press contacts
Europe and US: Sofia Bertilsson, sofia [​at​] wanaskonst.se, T +46 733 866820
Africa: Khumo Sebambo, khumo [​at​] niroxart.com

Wanås Konst is a sculpture park, Art Gallery and center for learning run by The Wanås Foundation in the south of Sweden. Since 1987 it works with site-specific, contemporary international art and education with an emphasis on innovation and accessibility. The collection in the sculpture park hosts 70 permanent works by artists such as Igshaan Adams, Nathalie Djurberg & Hans Berg, William Forsythe, Ann Hamilton, Jenny Holzer, Maya Lin and Yoko Ono.

The NIROX Foundation Trust is a not-for-profit trust established to foster the arts. It occupies 30 hectares dedicated to a sculpture park, artist’s residency and concert venue, integrated into a 1200-hectare private nature reserve, in the heart of the Cradle of Humankind World Heritage Site, outside of Johannesburg. The residency hosts artists from across the world, to stimulate and exchange creative action and thought, in all arts disciplines.

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