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REIMAGINING ALBUS

Athenkosi Kwinana

Athenkosi Kwinana is a graduate student in printmaking at the University of Johannesburg.

Her graduate project, photographed here during her exhibition at CONSTITUTION HILL, provides an intimate insight into representation and visibility, symbolically, and in reality, for Black Persons Living with Albinism (BPLWA) in South Africa, who are subjected to systemic violence and discrimination, and live with the constant fear that they might be harmed, raped or abducted and killed for their body parts.

 

The artist creates massive art works (self-portraits), where her visual impairment leads to a studied and detailed self-portraiture - magnified in dimension and stature, allowing an ease of production and reception, underpinned by a strong statement around the gaze, representation and power.

 

The artist noted in her artist statement at the ConHill exhibition: "By creating close-up imagery that emphasises the gaze, I highlight notions of power, visibility and inclusion of PLWA as a way of drawing attention to their human rights."

 

"The exhibition stimulates deeper awareness that can help address the lack of research, social justice, policies and practices relating to Albinism in. South Africa. My work signals urgent challenges regarding the need for equality and inclusivity in South Afric and Africa, and the need to reimagine PLWA in the visual, cultural and educational sectors".