From monumental paintings to mixed-media pieces, here's a selection of the thought-provoking artworks we loved at the inaugural Latitudes Art Fair.
7 Artworks We Loved At Latitudes Art Fair 2019
We expected a lot from the inaugural Latitudes Art Fair, especially considering the stellar group of women who founded and run the fair, and we were not disappointed.
From their flawlessly curated gallery displays, to introductions to lesser-known artists, warm and inviting glass tent, convenient location on Sandton Square, interesting talks and uber-cool partnershp with Daytona on a series of ‘art cars’, Latitudes was a one-of-a-kind event that got the whole art world talking, and thinking differently about what an art fair could be.
If you weren’t able to make it, or just want to relive the exciting few days of the event, then check out our list of things we liked at the fair.
We can’t wait for the next one. Truly a ‘fair for art in African times’.
7 Artworks House and Leisure Admired At Latitudes Art Fair
Esther Mahlangu’s Circles At The Melrose Gallery
You couldn’t help but be overwhelmed by the simple elegance of icon and legend Esther Mahlangu’s circular works, presented by The Melrose Gallery at their stand this year.
It’s the first time the artist has worked in a circular format for a wall setting and the result were nothing short of mesmerising.
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Maja Maljevic at Kalashnikovv
Serbian artist Maja Maljevic’ artworks are dreamy enough in general for House and Leisure to collaborate with her and blanket group Something Good earlier this year, but her paintings and ceramics on show here have taken our obsession with the artist to another level.
Like something out of a sketch session between Mondrian and Basquiat, their rapid abstraction and colourful play of rhythm and form is the sort of thing we are absolutely here for.
Derrick Nxumalo at KZNSA
To walk the eight-metre span of Derrick Nxumalo’s ambitious presentation at the KZNSA stand was an extraordinary experience.
The artist’s use of colour, line, form and detail brought an almost psychedelic sensibility to the fair, and a necessary jolt of the ‘outsider art’ laissez-faire so often excluded from the art fair environment. The artist’s story is also one worth researching, if you aren’t yet familiar with Nxumalo’s fascinating history.
Mmabatho Grace Mokalapa At Suburbia Contemporary
Spanish gallery Suburbia Contemporary welcomed guests to Latitudes with a solo presentation of young artist Mmabatho Grace Mokalapa — a heady, and near-transcendentail spatial experiment into voids and ‘the infinite’. After tripping headlong into the dark holes of her work we were entirely absorbed, and looking forward to what she does next.
The Mixed Reality Workshop
The Mixed Reality Workshop in collaboration with TMRW Gallery and William Kentridge's Centre For The Less Good Idea is utterly demolishing any lingering doubts around the ‘novelty’ aspect of artists working in the virtual reality/ augmented reality space.
Their presentation of works by Kentridge and Lady Skollie captivated both young and older audiences, asking important questions about the future of virtuality, and the role of the arts in this ongoing and important new wave of thinking and art-making.
Sanaa Gateja At AfriArt
Ugandan artist Sanaa Gateja turned the upcycled paper beads so frequently found on sidewalks throughout Africa into an immensely satisfying spiral of intrigue, flipping the craft vs art conversation on its head in the process. It’s no wonder Gateja is known as the Bead King in Uganda!
Walter Battiss x Coral Stephens Handweaving
Battiss' abstract colour fields and feather-people were whimsical, elegant, wholly unexpected and a celebration of the result of collaborative practices — a perfect capsule of all of our favourite things at this year’s Latitudes Art Fair.