“UNREST” ART EXHIBITION GETS PEOPLE TALKING
By Winston Sibanda
It was an insightful evening at the Durban Art Gallery (DAG) as the Essop brothers launched their exhibition on Thursday evening.
Hasain Essop and Husain Essop are twin brothers who grew up in Cape Town. According to them, their exhibition was to highlight crime and violence in societies they grew in.
Their artwork comprised of spherically shot photographs which highlighted some of the violent scenarios South Africa has experienced.
They said their work is linked to the Muslim religion in a bid to educate about the religion and to confront some violent cultures which are now emerging within the religion in the Middle East.
“We want people to look within themselves. There is violence in the Middle East and people killing one another- that is something which was not there before,” Hussain said.
Hasain added that their artwork also informed and educated on what Islam is all about.
He said, “Islam is not about what people hear through the media. People need to know what it is and our work gives firsthand information about our religion.”
DAG director Mduduzi Xakaza, said the exhibition was about respect. He urged people to respect the art space as it was symbolically holy ground since a Quran was within the building.
Ntokozo Xulu, who was a guest at the exhibition, expressed satisfaction towards the Essop twins’s artwork.
He said, “I am not Muslim but the way they told their stories through art makes it more exciting and understandable.”
Hassain praised art for expressing beyond words. He said, “art allows one to tap into their imagination and it gives them freedom to express themselves without boundaries.”
“Our aim is to create a legacy in South African art and make an impact and help grow arts and culture within communities,” he said.