However, in a watershed moment for such a prestigious museum, and one to note that has received a fair amount of criticism for being elitist in its formative days, Zeitz MOCAA has most certainly read the global room and turned that way of thinking on its head, quite literally. And it is spectacular!
As part of a re-positioning and re-articulation of the role of our institution, this exhibition marks a transformative shift in how Zeitz MOCAA engages with audiences and foregrounds the creativity and diversity of those in Cape Town.” - Koyo Kouoh, executive director and chief curator at Zeitz MOCAA
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“Zeitz MOCAA is reopening on Thursday after 7 months of closure. Art is in the eye of the beholder could be the translation of our museum reopening exhibition ‘Home Is Where The Art Is.’ The exhibition amplifies our commitment to taking access for all seriously. With no hierarchy or selection this is an opportunity for us to find out what art means to our audience and by the same token attempting to find out what a museum could stand for in current times.” - Koyo Kouoh (@madamekoyo), Executive Director and Chief Curator at Zeitz MOCAA
Nearly 2,000 artworks were submitted and one would rightfully feel that an exhibition of such magnitude and diversity might be an overwhelmingly higgledy-piggledy mess. However, the team of 11 curators have certainly earned their titles and, in a relatively short time period (around two weeks!), organised and displayed the works most thoughtfully. Noticing common themes and subject matter during the entry process the curatorial team grouped the works into distinct categories, i.e. The Garden, Inside, Outside, Relations and Time. These themes are then grouped via different rooms across the third floor of the museum, with artworks displayed salon-style - from floor to ceiling.
There is much to see and it is an exhibition that is ideally visited more than once as new treasures would be found on each walk-through. Treasures such as a poignant tribute triptych - a submission by a loving partner of the last three works a woman created before her recent passing, an onsite mural, a lockdown countdown, a humorously placed portrait of Nelson Mandela laughing in the direction of a depiction of Trump spewing what I assume is excrement, a collection of drawings - one for each day of the lockdown. Countless more paintings, sculptures, installations, photographs, tapestries and drawings jostle for attention yet complement each other in a refreshingly ego-free way.
© Ruth Cooper
Each work just bears a unique number so if visitors want more info on the work and artist they can access this via a QR code that once scanned takes you to the full list of artists and works on dislpay.
Home Is Where The Art Is, Art Is Where the Home Is is a balm to the predominantly all-around awful year that 2020 has been and soothes shattered nerves and uplifts spirits in truly heart-warming ways. It is on till the 10 January 2021 and if you haven’t seen it yet I urge you to do so.
Running concurrently is Line in the Sand, an experimental open-studio project by Cape Town artist Haroon Gunn-Salie. The museum is open 10am–6pm, Thursday to Sunday. Tickets bought during October and November will be valid for three months and can be used for multiple visits; masks must be worn throughout your visit For more visit zeitzmocaa.museum