A space that uses art as an essential tool to foster understanding, empathy and solidarity within the Langa community, in South Africa at large, within the African continent and beyond – this is 16 on Lerotholi.
It also showcases the brilliant powerhouses of creativity that the continent breathes. Each year, 16 on Lerotholi stages a number of exhibitions and runs an artist in residence programme.
Participating artists are Mongezi Gum, Gerald Tabata, Sipho Mpongo and Ras Silas Motse.
Gerald Tabata is a self-taught artist, who was born in 1975 and spent his childhood in Khayelitsha. He was enamoured of art from a young age and was trained in a variety of disciplines, including sculpture, photography and painting, which he took to immediately.
Tabata participated in the Community Arts Project (CAP) between 1988 and 1990 where he received further mentorship and training and became an artist in residence at Greatmore Studios in 2004, where he participated in a number of group exhibitions. He also took part in the Thupelo International Arts Workshop in 2006, collaborating with local and international artists as part of a creative cultural exchange programme. Tabata has exhibited in South Africa and internationally.
Sipho Mpongo was born in Ngqamakwe in 1993 and was raised in Langa. Illiso Labantu, a local photographic mentorship programme, provided the platform for Mpongo to launch into a photographic career. Sipho has recently completed a full-time course in study at the Cape Town School of Photography while simultaneously contributing to various photographic group shows and projects in Cape Town and internationally.
Mongezi Gum was born in Langa, and was passionate about art from a young age. After moving to Johannesburg, he studied drawing, sculpture and print-making, and earned his Diploma in Fine Arts in 1994 from the Johannesburg Art Foundation. He has exhibited at the South African National Gallery, Artscape, AVA, Everard Read and Roots Art Gallery, among others.
Ras Silas Motse is a mixed media artist who works with the concept of capturing feelings to narrate contemporary concepts using different African narratives as his inspiration. His calling was born and bred in Thaba Nchu, in a small isolated town called Motlatla.
When Ras Sila left high school, he went to study Fine Arts and a PGCE at the Central University of Technology, Bloemfontein. He spent a couple of years grooming and moulding young minds and future artists as a high school teacher before taking the leap to pursue his true calling full time.
Ras Sila Motse is currently the artist in residency at 16 on Lerotholi Gallery, Langa.
Visit the gallery at 16 Lerotholi Avenue, Langa, email firstname.lastname@example.org, call 081 316 9966 or visit the website at https://16onlerotholi.africa/