Impressions from South Africa, 1965 to Now

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Secret Language II, 2005 Lithograph, Composition 17 11/16 X 14 15/16" (45 X 38 Cm) © Courtesy of the artist & MoMA (Museum of Modern Art)
Impressions from South Africa, 1965 to Now
Curated by: Judith B. Hecker

11 West 53 Street
New York, NY 10019
March 23rd, 2011 - August 14th, 2011
Opening: March 23rd, 2011 10:30 AM - 5:30 PM

Wed-Mon 10:30 - 5:30; Fri 10:30 - 8:00


During the oppressive years of apartheid rule in South Africa, not all artists had access to the same opportunities. But far from quashing creativity and political spirit, these limited options gave rise to a host of alternatives—including studios, print workshops, art centers, schools, publications, and theaters open to all races; underground poster workshops and collectives; and commercial galleries that supported the work of black artists—that made the art world a progressive environment for social change. Printmaking, with its flexible formats, portability, relative affordability, and collaborative environment, was a catalyst in the exchange of ideas and the articulation of political resistance.

Impressions from South Africa, 1965 to Now presents prints by 29 artists and organizations from MoMA’s collection that demonstrate the unusual reach, range, and impact of printmaking in a country during and after a period of political upheaval. From the earliest print, a 1965 linoleum cut by Azaria Mbatha, to recent works by a younger generation that investigate a multiplicity of themes and forms in the wake of apartheid, these works are striking examples of printed art as a tool for social, political, and personal expression. Featured artists include Bitterkomix, Kudzanai Chiurai, Sandile Goje, William Kentridge, Senzeni Marasela, John Muafangejo, Cameron Platter, Claudette Schreuders, and Sue Williamson.