Ikoyi, Lagos
Image: Katlego Tlabela


Another Michaelis graduate who specialised in printmaking is a newly self-taught painter, and Tlabela's brightly executed domestic scenes reflecting the intersection between capitalism and post-apartheid black identity, have already caught the eyes of gallerists and curators abroad in Brazil, Lagos, London, Poland and Portugal.


The second-prize winner of the Emerging Painting Invitational (EPI) 2020, this Johannesburg-based visual artist explores themes of mental illness, body dysmorphia and popular culture using abstract expressionism, neo expressionism and symbolism. The prize is part of the second edition from the Emerging African Art Galleries Association (EAAGA). Inaugurated in 2019 in Harare, Zimbabwe, the prize is the first of its kind and aims to support emerging contemporary painting and painters across the continent. Yolanda’s use of intense colour and textured oils, acrylics and gum in her unsettling forms is remarkably powerful.


An artist and curator at BKhz, Nkhensani works in different media and practices — photography, performance, new media, painting and sound design — to meditate on what individualism and collectivism mean.


Buys is a Michaelis School of Fine Art graduate who works in a figurative style that feels like going through the family album. His painted snaps and humorous titles are thick and quick with meaning.


A third Michaelis graduate and Kutti Collective member (a group that creates a shared space for South Asian artists,) Ramkilawan’s tapestries address her own experiences within that cultural and geographical identity. Having adapted rug-hooking, she uses a crochet instead of punch needle and experiments with wool and other material, with stretched hessian as her canvas. Her latest portraits and still lives are part of a solo exhibition curated by Jana Terblanche and titled Aren't we always having Indian dreams?


Collage making, distortion and the gaze are three important themes and media used by Ntila to examine sense of self, largely in black and white. It hasn’t hurt that she collaborated with fashion designer Victoria Beckham on a fashion campaign to help with greater visibility of her conceptual photography as she continues to produce these self portraits which she manipulates using new media. She has also collaborated with local fashion label Artclub and Friends to further push the boundaries of where and how art should be shown and shared.


Based in Cape Town, Seiler places displays of affection, gay culture and the tradition of camp front and centre of his quick-drying roof paint and woodcut paintings and installation. Tender, intimate and vulnerable, the longing and questioning are palpable in the text-based or portrait montages.


Having taken part in group exhibitions locally and internationally, this Mozambican fine artist, muralist and co-founder of Prints on paper studio has an exciting new body of work that perfectly captures Joburg CBD street- and landscapes. He recently had a solo show at Kalashnikovv gallery.

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