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Gallery Focus

The Mother City is abuzz this month with art and cultural events attracting people from around the world.

From the Investec Cape Town Art Fair to Design Indaba and a plethora of other events, here’s our selection of exhibitions to add to your art diary.

Guns & Rain

Founded in 2014 as an online-only gallery, Guns & Rain has quickly become one of South Africa’s most reputable emerging galleries. In March 2018, the gallery opened a physical space in Johannesburg. It represents a diverse stable of artists from the southern African region through a comprehensive exhibition and art fair programme. At the Investec Cape Town Art Fair, Guns & Rain will be presenting work in the Tomorrow’s Today and Main Contemporary sections by Mozambican, Botswanan and South African artists who focus on materiality and process, as well as ongoing reflections on identity politics.

Guns & Rain introduces the sculptural work of Chris Soal, a South African artist whose practice is concerned with materiality of objects that are utilised daily by millions of people globally before being disposed of, such as bottle caps and toothpicks. In the Main Contemporary section, Guns & Rain will present a focused presentation of work by Botswanan photographer Letso Leipego, Mozambican painter Nelly Guambe and South African artists Asanda Kupa and Bevan de Wet.

Everard Read/CIRCA

With spaces in Cape Town, Johannesburg and London, Everard Read is one of the prominent galleries in the South African art world.

Hide by Brett Murray, 6–27 February 2019, Everard Read Cape Town

For his first solo exhibition in the city in over four years, Brett Murray returns with his considered satirical language and anthropomorphic caricatures, but this time turns the focus inward to investigate a more personal, emotionally-charged narrative. Through the gaping figure of the nagapie, Murray considers the role of the satirist in relation to political debate in the era of social media. Using humour as the tool, Murray grapples with the confusion and fear characterising the current moment in history. With this new series of works, Murray comments on mounting global threats and the unpredictability of contemporary politics.


Having recently relocated to a new home on Buiten Street, WHATIFTHEWORLD represents a varied stable of South African artists.

IQRA by Thania Petersen,

7 February–16 March 2019

“Iqra” in Arabic means “to read”, and is the governing theme in Thania Petersen’s solo show. For the artist, this means interpreting the world in a more beneficent and inclusive manner as an antidote to corrosive religious dogma, known as Wahabism in the Islamic faith. What deeply concerns Petersen is the damage that the cult of Wahabism has wreaked and the intolerance and hate it enshrines. It is against this distortion of Islam that Petersen has set up her counter-faith in which art, once again, assumes its sacred purpose.

Billy Monk Collection

Shot in the Dark

Billy Monk’s photographic archive depicts a rich slice of the hidden dockside world of 1960s Cape Town that, until now, has not been fully revealed to the public. Working as a bouncer at clubs such as the Catacombs, Monk photographed the revelry and nightlife of people gathered below ground to dance, drink, and momentarily forget the segregation laws.

Visit the Billy Monk Collection at booth P1in the Past/Modern section of the Investec Cape Town Art Fair (15–17 February) or purchase limited edition prints through

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