Go on a voyage through the stars, experience the wonders of our world, and engage with our heritage – all at Iziko Museums of South Africa
This January, #CelebrateSummer, #Exploremore and visit Iziko Museums of South Africa for an exciting presentation of art, science, history and culture, highlighted in our #SummerShowcase of new exhibitions.
At the Iziko South African Museum
New on exhibition at the Iziko South African Museum (ISAM), South African mining and Earth artist Jeannette Unite’s PLOT: Critical Zones is a trans-disciplinary exhibition that explores the interaction between humans and the natural environment. The artworks are made using minerals sourced directly from mines and heritage sites, and draws on concepts of environmental stewardship, emphasizing legislation around extraction and the rights of nature.
Also on show at the ISAM, Sentinels of the South examines the history, discoveries, and current role of South Africa’s Antarctic and Southern Ocean exploration; while JellyWorld – an ocean full of jellyfish in a world changed by people is a multidisciplinary exhibition featuring video, interactive touchscreens and specimens – all centered on the interaction between jellyfish and humans. African Dinosaurs showcases the history of the giants that ruled the earth millions of years ago, and Talking Heads and Heritage: in conversation with the Lydenburg Heads celebrates one of South Africa’s most treasured archaeological finds – the 1000-year-old Lydenburg Heads.
At the Iziko South African National Gallery
AmaHubo, now open at the Iziko South African National Gallery (ISANG), is a video installation by Buhlebezwe Siwani that interrogates the historical associations between African spiritual beliefs and cosmologies and Christianity. Centering the role of land and black women (and their positionality) within spiritual practices and institutions, amaHubo invites us to reflect deeply on the challenges of rootedness, devotion and healing in our society.
Other must-see exhibitions at the ISANG include Territories Between Us – an group exhibition foregrounding embodied ways of knowing and delving into various subjectivities to point to the many ways our existences are territorialized by structures, both visible and invisible; Durban-based artist, curator and educator Coral Bijoux’s multimedia installation Dreams as R-evolution – which takes visitors on a dreamlike journey and presents a surreal otherworldliness that is beyond social conditioning; and Tribute – an exhibition that brings the South African visual art school syllabus to life, creating a stimulating learning engagement that fosters respect, enjoyment and fresh visual expression.
At the Iziko Slave Lodge
Explore the renewed slavery exhibition spaces at the Iziko Slave Lodge (ISL) this January! The exhibition narrative has been rewritten to give greater recognition to the presence of women and children, in order to acknowledge their agency and to highlight positive and negative legacies and the afterlives of slavery. This is a representation of many truths in a traumatic and complex history of slavery and dispossession as it impacted on the lives of most black South Africans.
Also currently on exhibition at the ISL is Red in the Rainbow, a multimedia exhibition offering fascinating insights into the idealism and vision, as well as the frustrations, pain and sheer persistence, that led to the ending of apartheid and the birth of the “rainbow nation”. Unshackled History: the wreck of the Slave Ship, Sao Jose, 1794 brings into memory the enslaved people who lost their lives aboard the Sao Jose that ran aground off Clifton’s 4th beach in 1794; Aluta Continua profiles a selection of stories from students living in the Western Cape during the 1976 student uprisings, and seeks to map their individual and collective contributions to the fall of apartheid and the dream of a free and fair South Africa for all; and KEMET: Life in Ancient Egypt follows the story that unfolds when an ordinary Egyptian passes away and enters the afterlife, through an Augmented Reality game developed by students from the Friends of Design – Academy of Digital Arts.
Under Level 1, Iziko Museums of South Africa is open daily from 09h30 until 15h30 – please visit www.iziko.org.za for more detailed information. When visiting Iziko Museums, your health and safety, and that of our staff, is of utmost importance. Please note that there are Covid-19 protocols in place to ensure the safety of both staff and visitors; we thank you for all your efforts in maintaining social distancing to keep both yourself and us safe.
Throughout this uncertain period, Iziko has been online and working to showcase our unique work and collections on the website. Visit our website to explore all that we have on offer, and keep up-to-date on Covid-19 safety protocols and opening hours. Make sure to also like, follow and share our social media pages on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and TikTok!