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.
An illustrated publication will accompany the exhibition.
Meleko Mokgosi: Bread, Butter, and Power is organized by the Fowler Museum at UCLA and curated by Erica P. Jones, Associate Curator of African Arts.
The exhibition is made possible by major support from the Philip L. Ravenhill Endowed Fund and the Fay Bettye Green Fund to Commission New Work.
Generous funding is also provided by the Pasadena Art Alliance, the Fowler Contemporary Council, and the Fowler Exhibition Fund, with additional support from Laura Donnelley, Pamela and Jarl Mohn, Michelle Anne Bholat, Demetrio and Gianna Kerrison, Arthur Lewis and Hau Nguyen, V. Joy Simmons, MD, George and Azita Fatheree, Jay Geller, and Ric Whitney and Tina Perry-Whitney.