DUT ART STUDENTS TAKE OVER THE AFRICAN ARTS CENTRE
Written by: Alicia Naidoo
Two of the Durban University of Technology’s art students earned themselves a place in the top three spots at the Interpret Durban competition, on 28 June at The African Art Centre, on Florida Road, Durban.
The theme of Interpret Durban 7 (ID7) was ‘The Shift’. The Shift speaks of change, a movement in paradigm and a fresh perspective on Durban.
“If you look at the African Art Centre, it’s traditional African work and our vision is to make this more contemporary. This exhibition leans towards becoming more contemporary, like having work from Zainab is so amazing, this is local Durban,” said Magdalene Reddy, the director of the African Art Centre.
The African Art Centre is an institution that identifies, develops and creates economic opportunities for artists specifically in Durban.
Third year graphic design student, Zainab Ismail experimented with henna through graphic design setting her work apart from her competitors. Her designs were an interpretation of ‘The beasts of South Africa’ which was elaborated through a mixture of Indian and African culture creating an exquisite fusion of beautiful patterns. This being her first exhibition, she has already created artwork ranging from between R1 600 and R2 500 in price.
Leevi Matthew Arrikum, a bachelor of technology in fine art student, was also one of the finalists. His artwork interprets the people of South Africa from a social context.
“As I walk through the City of Durban I see elements such as poverty, desperation, exploitation, unemployment and this is what my work focuses on,” said Arrikum.
His exhibition was based on South African history. For the year 1652, he portrayed Jan van Riebeeck, 1948 the figure of one of the architects of apartheid Verwoerd and for 1994, the beginning of the era of democracy.
“This year’s art is true to South African culture holding a strong conceptual message,” said last year’s Interpret Durban winner, Sabastein Pillay.
The winners of the visual arts category received an exhibition at the Africa Art Centre on Florida Road in Durban.
*Caption: (L-R) The three finalists – Ian Robinson, Zainab Ismail and Leevi Matthew Arrikum.