JOHANN LOUW

b. 1965, Bellville, South Africa

Lives and works in Cape Town, South Africa

Johann Louw graduated with a Masters in Fine Art from Stellenbosch University in 1992, and has since exhibited widely, both in South Africa and abroad. In 2007, the Sanlam Art Collection presented a mid-career retrospective as a tribute to Louw’s extensive output and distinguished career over the past two decades. This exhibition toured the country in 2008 and 2009, and was accompanied by a publication on the artist. Louw was awarded the Ampersand Fellowship in 2014.

SMAC Gallery recently presented Louw’s new body of work as part of the SOLO section at FNB Art Joburg. His work is also recently included in the Ampersand Award 21 years celebration exhibition, curated by Gordon Froud at the University of Johannesburg Art Gallery (JAG) in Johannesburg, South Africa. Earlier this year Louw presented a solo exhibition, entitled Lacrimosa, at SMAC Gallery in Cape Town, South Africa, as well as a solo booth with SMAC Gallery at Istanbul Contemporary in Istanbul, Turkey. In 2018, Louw participated in a group show, entitled Endless Horizons Gráfica Sudafricana, at the Mexican Art Expo in Mexico City, Mexico and, Forward? Forward! Forward at Stellenbosch University Museum in Stellenbosch, South Africa.

In 2009, Louw was selected to form part of Linguaggi del Mondo: Languages of the World an official collateral exhibition to the 53rd Venice Biennale in 2009. In 2010 he exhibited in Environmental Concern and Human Existence at the 4th Beijing International Art Biennale, China, and Paralleli – the official exhibition of the Sabbionetta Biennale for Contemporary Art in Italy. He was included in Home Truths, curated by Micheal Godby, at the Iziko South African National Gallery in Cape Town, and later at the Sanlam Art Gallery in Belville. In the same year, the Association of Visual Art (AVA) Gallery in Cape Town, South Africa presented a solo exhibition of works by Johann Louw, entitled AVA Alumni: Johann Louw. 

Earlier solo exhibitions include:  Der Abschied at SMAC Gallery in Johannesburg, South Africa in 2017; Loog at SMAC Gallery in Stellenbosch, South Africa in 2016; New Paintings in 2010 at SMAC in Stellenbosch, Terugkoms van Cythera (Return from Cythera) in 2013 at SMAC in Cape Town and Gestaltes, an exhibition of large scale works on paper at SMAC in Cape Town, in 2014. The University of Johannesburg Art Gallery presented his Et in Arcadia Ego in 2013.

Selected collections include: Iziko South African National Gallery, Cape Town, South Africa; Johannesburg Art Gallery, Johannesburg, South Africa; Sasol Art Collection, Johannesburg, South Africa and the Spier Art Collection, Cape Town, South Africa.

Louw’s work is currently included in the Ampersand Foundation Award 21 years celebration exhibition curated by Gordon Froud. The exhibition runs from 11 September to 9 October 2019, at the University of Johannesburg Art Gallery (JAG) in Johannesburg, South Africa.

John McDonald | Sydney Morning Herald | A tale of two art fairs | 28 September 2018

Marco Enrico Giacomelli | Artribune | Contemporary Istanbul. La fiera sul Bosforo compie 13 anni | 20 September 2018 – PDF

Nicola Kritzinger | Business Day | Louw art: baboon in our psyches is there when we die | 20 December 2017 – PDF

Tim Liebbrandt | The Weekend Argus | Scraping Away to Essential Shape | March 2016 – PDF

Melvyn Minnaar | Die Burger | Aanslag op die Onderbewuste | December 2014 – PDF

Johan Myburg | Die Beeld | Dood Skuil in Louw se Arcadia | 21 August 2013 – PDF

Cobus van Bosch | Die Burger | Louw se Skilderye Spreek Kleurtaal | 14 January 2011 – PDF

Melvyn Minnaar | Art Times | SMAC Gallery sends 3 Artists to the Prestigious 53rd Venice Biennale | July 2009 – PDF

Melvyn Minnaar | Cape Times | SA Turns Heads in Venice | July 2009 – PDF