The night before last I attended the opening night of the I Art Joburg photography exhibition at (the new!) Area3 in the Maboneng Precinct in support of my hubby’s 2nd exhibition (proud wifey moment!). The area was buzzing with the night market, live music & a performance by visual artist Marcus Neustetter. It was a particularly chilly summer’s night in Jozi but that didn’t keep anyone away…
Over 45 local photographers exhibited a wide selection of photos (which were also for sale) showcasing the beauty in & around Johannesburg. I’m a big fan of the city so I loved the idea of this platform to celebrate & show off my adopted home, Jozi.
There were 1000′s of photographs submitted, covering the people, large-scale murals, street art & city life. This was narrowed down to the top 50, which were exhibited on the night. Different to a recent similar event, it wasn’t a competition per se so there were no winners on the night. The talent on display was amazing, I could ogle for hours…
In the run up to the exhibition people were encouraged to walk the streets of Jozi or join one of their tours (called #instawalkjhb, a must do!) & document our gorgeous city through photographs. We did a similar one earlier in the year & its such a different way to see the city & on foot.
Hubby’s 1st entry, taken in the streets of Rosebank
Entry #2, shot in the street we live in 🙂
Shots were submitted to @iartjoburg (or using the tag: #iartjoburg) to be selected for the exhibition & entry was open to all (i.e. any handset & you didn’t even need to use Instagram as long as the picture was of the city), which was really great.
In keeping with the theme, the event had a very urban/street feel with music to match. It was also my 1st time at this new venue at the Maboneng Precinct, Area3, a multi-purpose project space & the home of Adidas Style. The plan for Area3 in the future is to host fashion shows, pop-up retail & exhibitions etc to showcase the best of SA talent, be it sport, music, art or fashion.
I Art Joburg is so much more than this exhibition though. It’s a month-long project that introduced 5 world-renowned street & fine artists to the heart of Jozi, Maboneng Precinct to paint large-scale murals in the area. Their ethos stands firm: “If we can inspire ourselves to inspire others, we can inspire change”.
What few realise is that I Art Joburg is part of a bigger initiative, I Art SA, where different locations are chosen each year. I Art Joburg comes on the heels of successful earlier events, namely I Art Woodstock & I Art Soweto, art for community initiatives which saw the painting of 22 murals. One of these was an elderly lady from Woodstock who had her home of 87 years painted by artist Freddy Sam.
Also on exhibition were photos from legendary documentary photographer Martha Cooper. She’s renowned for capturing NYC’s underground street scene during the 70’s & 80’s lifting the lid on Hip Hop, rap, break dancing & graffiti for the world to see.
All photos have been curated by the local mobile photography community, @snapgramsa in association with @igerjozi and @iartjoburg. If you missed it, the exhibition will run until the 5th of December 2012 at Area3 in the Maboneng Precinct.
I left on a high, fully inspired! Now if I can just turn some of that into action 😉