Sunday, March 22, 2009

Kentridge on uTube

In a comment to my post (below), Sheree of the Art and Life blog pointed out that there are a lot of William Kentridge videos up at uTube. When I went looking, I found more than “a lot,” I found a whole treasure trove. One of the things that I found difficult about the show was trying to watch his videos within a noisy, jostling crowd and in an environment where I felt rushed and pushed by the multitude of things to see. Watching them at home has allowed me to watch them in sequence and to understand them a lot better. Here are a few of his pieces but don’t just limit yourself to these; go and look at the whole body of work. The man (?) who posted them also has put up very astute commentary, which also deserves to be read. I often feel that SF MOMA’s shows are all contemporary flash and no content but that’s certainly not the case with this one.

Johannesburg the Second Greatest City after Paris is the first in this series, and was made from twenty-five drawings

Felix in exile

History of the main complaint

Sobriety, Obesity and Growing Old

Weighing…and wanting


The question remains: Is it fair for a white artist to be the most visible representative of post-apartheid South Africa? "William is already a mid-career artist, extremely prominent throughout South Africa during the 1980s," explains Cameron, in an article in Art Net (online). "It would be premature, if not impossible, to expect a black artist of the same generation to meet these criteria." Kentridge, who fully acknowledges the privileges and advantages of his position, in no way wants his artwork to erase or alleviate his sense of political responsibility: "Any white looking back at the apartheid era has to say, 'I could have done more.' "

Sheree Rensell:

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