LADY OF THE RAIN – 150x150cm
Is a rapidly emerging mixed media fine artist born in Swaziland in 1982 and currently living and working in Johannesburg, South Africa.
He is greatly inspired by the identity of contemporary African women and the issues that surround them. He often depicts these women wearing headscarves which are a symbol of womanhood and power. He explores how society often values a contemporary African woman as a commodity. (For example, as money and power in the lobola system.)
Mbongeni’s expressive strokes, scrapes and splashes break down the face but on standing back they come together as a solid form. The woman is solid and non-solid; there and not there; complete and incomplete. The contemporary African woman is many things and nothing.
In 2005 he moved his studio to August House in Johannesburg where he met the late Benon Latuuya. Since then Benon has greatly influenced Mbongeni’s approach. Another great inspiration is German artist, Voka, with his spontaneous and expressive gestures.
After completing his schooling at Waterford Kamhlaba, Swaziland, Mbongeni went on to study Fine Arts through correspondence at the University of South Africa, Pretoria. He then attended the Tswhane University of Technology in Tswane (Pretoria) for Fine Arts. He also studied 3D animation and simultaneously worked for several years in 3D animation before becoming a full time artist in 2008.
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