Spier Contemporary 2010 Curatorial Team Announced

The Africa Centre has announced the much anticipated appointment of the curatorial team for Spier Contemporary 2010. It is this team of five that will travel the country in mid-November 2009, choosing artworks from the thirteen Spier Contemporary selection centres; a selection that will reflect the creative mood of South Africa when the Spier Contemporary 2010 Exhibition opens in March next year.

The diverse curatorial team brings a cross-section of experience, knowledge and passion to the project, across a variety of mediums. Hailing from South Africa, Ethiopia and Zambia; the five curators have all worked in the arts in its various incarnations both on the continent and internationally. They will view works across a wide range of genres including but not restricted to film, animation, design, performing arts, photography, fine arts and more.

The Spier Contemporary’s project team consciously sought curatorial candidates who spoke to the projects objectives. Continuity was vital if the voices of the previous and future Spier Contemporary were not to be dissociated. The Spier Contemporary 2007 curators, Jay Pather and Clive van den Berg, were chosen to bridge this gap but also in their own right; as highly esteemed South African art commentators.

It felt important to include a previous Spier Contemporary winner in the curatorial team to add another perspective to the process. Zambian-born, Mwenya Mabwe adds her insight and, along with Pather, represents an important link for the performance arts selection process.

Farzanah Badsha represents a strategic link between the management of the project and the creation itself, whilst Ethiopian anthropologist and curator, Meskerem Assegued, provides an external view, one that is free of the assumptions and orthodoxy of South African culture, history and discourse.

The Spier Contemporary project is particularly challenging curatorially as there are very few limitations to entry. Form, medium, intention and style are all entirely open to interpretation and the six or seven prizes that will be awarded are not determined by category. In addition, Spier Contemporary 2010 has spent twelve months broadening its artistic networks by encouraging artists across South Africa to heed the call and enter new work, which pushes the boundaries of contemporary art practice.

Artists wishing to enter works of any media into Spier Contemporary 2010 must be over 21 years of age and must live in South Africa. Artists may submit up to five entries or proposals each to one of the national selection centres, alternately by post or online.  Entries for Spier Contemporary 2010 close in the last week of October 2009. Postal entries should also be received by 31st October 2009.

The Spier Contemporary Exhibition will open at The City Hall in Cape Town on 13th March 2010.