We are excited to welcome Athi-Patra Ruga as artist-in-residence at the UCT Irma Stern Museum! Ruga has for many decades been in conversation with the art of Irma Stern – drawing on and reworking such iconic paintings as Stern’s Watussi Queen, Swazi Youth and Zulu Woman. Now we are delighted that Ruga will be working from a studio at the Museum, engaging with Irma Stern at the intimate level of her former home.
Both Stern and Ruga were and are ground-breaking and transgressive in their willingness to push the boundaries of aesthetics and explore new ways of making art. And both Athi-Patra and Irma are and were larger-than-life characters whose charisma, love of an opulent visual language and unrelenting focus on their art have made them internationally celebrated and renowned. In both artists’ work, we see a search for an alternative social fabric – be it a search for Utopia or the construction of a mythical metaverse.
It is a privilege to have an artist of Athi-Patra Ruga’s stature joining the Team ISM for the next three months as visiting artist. The exhibition opens in March 2022 at the UCT Irma Stern Museum, showing work produced during the residency alongside select examples of Ruga’s iconic tapestries, which reference paintings done by Irma Stern during her 1942 and 1946 expeditions to central Africa. For more information, see Irma & Athi – Irma Stern Museum.
We also invite you to be creative at the UCT Irma Stern Museum. Under the name ‘Open Studio’, we invite you to paint, read, sculpt, research and create in the new Education Studio and Reading Room. Bring your art materials, books or computers every Wednesday between 14.30 and 17.00 to work in these inspiring spaces of the Museum, surrounded by other creatives. Do you prefer a more structured and guided approach? In that case, do join Jill Trappler in her guided Open Studio sessions at the UCT Irma Stern Museum every Thursday from 13:00 to 16:00, with the first guided sessions starting on 4 November.
Regular entrance fees apply for unguided Open Studio sessions (see: Tickets and Info – Irma Stern Museum), and you are encouraged to make an appointment by contacting email@example.com or via phone on 060 8270 787. Guided sessions are R 320 per session and can be booked directly with Jill at firstname.lastname@example.org.
We look forward to seeing you all again at the UCT Irma Stern Museum.
With best wishes from the ISM Team