The exhibition Third Landscapes by Roxy Kaczmarek is part of a Masters through the University of Johannesburg. The dissertation examined selected printmaking collectives; artists who have reached adulthood in post-1994 South Africa, ‘born-frees,’ and who are actively working in Johannesburg.
The premise of the research is that these emerging printmakers appear to use the collective as a strategy to navigate and challenge existing established and ‘traditional’ modes, focusing specifically on the medium of print as a tool to assist in this process.
The collectives chosen for the study were Alphabet Zoo, Danger Gevaar Ingozi and Title in Transgression.
A study presented in the form of written Portraits of their operations explored potential alternatives of navigating the contemporary landscape of South African art.
‘Third Landscapes’ interrogates the intersection of plants and people within liminal spaces of the city. Attempting to break from traditional forms of printmaking, the work experiments with a combination of print and cement. By bringing attention to marginalised urban greenery in between the spaces controlled by humans as well as undisturbed natural areas, Kaczmarek brings into focus how city dwellers are informed by and in turn inform the urban landscape.
Informed by her research into emerging printmaking collectives, the artist sees her own work parallel to theirs investigating identity with the context of Johannesburg. The collaborative projects are an effort to engage on a multitude of levels: rethinking traditional forms of how prints are made and presented and rethinking of voice in exploring and gaining post-colonial knowledge of developing and shifting relationship to the city.
Kaczmarek grew up in Cape Town and currently lives and works in Johannesburg. She specializes in printmaking, which she explores through her art practice and her work for the David Krut Workshop. She obtained a BA in Fine Art from the University of Cape Town’s Michaelis School of Fine Art before working as a printer and studio manager at Warren Editions Print Studio. She won a gold medal in the Absa Art and Life Awards for Printmaking in 2012 and has done internships at the London Print Studio and Amsterdam’s Grafisch Atelier.
Collaborative piece with:
Danger Gevaar Ingozi Studio (Chad Cordeiro, Sbongiseni Khulu and Nathaniel Sheppard III), Alphabet Zoo (Minenkulu Ngoyi and Isaac Zavale), Malebona Maphutse, Allyssa Herman and Sarah Hunkin.
Sound installation in collaboration with Thor Rixon