Art Exhibition: Phoneography

The smartphone camera, aided by applications such as Instagram, has become the most democratic of artist’s tools, making you and I, and our aunties, into prolific photographers. Now, Durban’s respected artSpace gallery is hosting an exhibition consisting entirely of photographs taken on smartphones. The call went out some weeks ago for members of the public to print their phone pictures, mount them onto 12cm x 12cm blocks and submit them to the gallery to be featured in the exhibition, entitled 'Phoneography'.  Many talented Durban snappers have risen to the challenge and the result is a vibrant, varied display of photographs which come to life on the walls of the gallery. Scenes indigenous to Durban abound: from palms silhouetted against an African-blue sky to the beachfront’s Ricksha’s colourful head-dresses and Jacob Zuma’s election poster with lips filled in bright pink by a graffiti artist with a sense of the absurd. Not all images are delightful, though, and Durban’s dangers are highlighted by a poignant snap of a defiant scribble commemorating the site of a hijacking. Some photographers have submitted one outstanding shot, while others have used a series of blocks to create striking installations. Thought-provoking and inspiring, this exhibition is well worth a visit, especially as you can take home a piece of it for the set price of R100. Phoneography runs until 26 February at artSpace gallery, 3 Millar Road (off Umgeni Road). For more information call 031-312-0793. Text: Candice Botha