Body & Soul, Movement & Site

17.02.2017 – 19.02.2017

Cape Town Convention Centre, Cape Town

South Africa

SMAC Gallery is proud to present Body & Soul, Movement & Site, an installation work by Sandile Zulu for the Tomorrows / Today Special Project Section at Cape Town Art Fair 2017.
“There is an ambivalent and curious, but critical fascination with creative pleasure, a fantasy of the creative action, a play with the flame as a living active substance, as image and concept on one hand, while tragic on the other.” – Sandile Zulu

For Sandile Zulu, the relationship between material, medium and the body has always been a significant one. Working in the archetypal mediums of re, water, air and earth, process and materiality are integral to each piece of work he produced. Concerned with the intricacies and underlying mechanisms of the body, Zulu’s practice – at its core – is an investigation of biological, psychological, and social conditions. Prevalent in this new body of work is the dynamic use of re, an aesthetic that has become synonymous with Zulu’s work. His fascination with the biological sciences has fostered a critical investigation of history, histology, the human genome and mapping, where visual reference to DNA strands, cell populations and spinal cords become metaphors for societal structures, political discourse and spirituality.

The title of this special project – Body & Soul, Movement & Site – references the body, in both its physical and spiritual manifestations, and how it navigates between personal and public space. The word ‘site’ is far-reaching and holds multiple definitions in this body of work, alluding to the notion of movement through multiple locations, simultaneously. This multidimensional navigation refers not only to physical movement from one place to another; but rather, more holistically, points to the navigation of one’s sense in relation to history, cosmology, science and sociology.

This site-specific installation, sees Zulu combining sculptural pillars -suggestive of urban structures- and his signature scorched canvases, with a selection of found objects and ornaments from his studio. Punctuating the visceral residue of re on each canvas, the presence of these objects – which Zulu uses as visual references for many of his works – reiterates his exploration of what is considered personal and public space.
Believing strongly that the social patterns and visual designs we produce mimic those present in our internal molecular make-up, Zulu’s explorations of the body as a visual reference become record of his attempts at making sense of the human psyche and behaviour.