Botswana-born Meleko Mokgosi employs a European style of narrative story-telling to reclaim histories of southern Africa and distinguish them from those imposed by colonial powers. Curator Erica P. Jones discusses the artist’s process and provides insight into the conceptual underpinnings of his work.
Erica P. Jones
#CultureFix is a short-format series of gallery talks featuring artists, curators, and other luminaries. No reservation required. All talks are free of charge.
Parking available in UCLA Lot 4, 398 Westwood Plaza, directly off Sunset Blvd | $12/day
About the Exhibition
Meleko Mokgosi’s large-scale episodic painting cycle Bread, Butter, and Power forms the newest chapter in his ongoing series Democratic Intuition, which seeks to explore ideas about the many ways that democratic concepts influence our lives, loves, and relationships on macro- and micro-levels. This twenty-panel installation interrogates the theme of feminism in the context of southern Africa, and considers the consequences of dividing labor practices by gender.
Mokgosi’s approach to storytelling through the form of history painting allows us to compare what we see in the paintings to the realities of inequality and gendered labor division we know from experience. This approach to the content also inspires us to think expansively about politics, power structures, and the role of history in the creation of the current nations of southern Africa.