27th Mar, 2017 15:00

Historic, Modern & Contemporary Art

Lot 87
Lot 87 - Kemang Wa Lehulere (South Africa 1984-)


Kemang Wa Lehulere (South Africa 1984-)
Never ending dead-end

ink on paper

Artwork date: 2012
Signature details: signed and dated

Sold for R17,565
Estimated at R20,000 - R30,000


ink on paper

Artwork date: 2012
Signature details: signed and dated


59 x 42 cm

Stevenson Gallery, Cape Town.


South Africa’s Rising Art Star”, as heralded in the headline of a New York Times solo exhibition review, Cape Town born Kemang Wa Lehulere has exhibited his evocative drawings, paintings, collages and installations across the world. Earning critical acclaim, Wa Lehulere has won a host of local and international awards - from the first International Tiberius Art Award, Dresden in 2014 to his Standard Bank Young Artist Award for Visual Arts in 2015. Most recently, Wa Lehulere was announced as the 2017 Deutsche Bank Artist of the Year, with a solo exhibition opening at the Deutsche Bank KunstHalle, Berlin, this year.The knife eats @ home (1) points to the title of Wa Lehulere’s third solo exhibition with Stevenson Gallery. In the exhibition and in both of these artworks, the artist explores the ability of objects to escape their very definitions, meanings and shape. The familiar is questioned and unsettled – forms become fluid as grey tones bleed beyond their bold outlines. Within the context of Wa Lehulere’s concerns with personal and collective storytelling, the traces of the artist’s gestures and the wash of ink can be seen a poignant play on memory and forgetting.As history is seen to repeat itself, the title of Never ending dead-end is reminiscent of the viewer’s inability to fix or secure one meaning to the work. As the Director of the Museo de Arte Moderno de Buenos Aires, Victoria Noorthoorn (2017: online), states, Wa Lehulere “revisits his own history and the pain of his society by creating poignant images that are never literal or explanatory, but are instead a territory to be traversed, understood, and revealed”.

Josephine Higgins


Noorthoorn, N. (2016). In Kemang Wa Lehulere is ‘Artist of the Year’ 2017. Available at: https://www.db.com/newsroom_news/2016/medien/kemang-wa-lehulere-is-artist-of-the-year-2017-en-11533.htm

Sulcas, R. (2016). South Africa’s Rising Art Star Builds his new Stage in Chicago. New York Times. Available at: https://www.nytimes.com/2016/11/02/arts/design/kemang-wa-lehulere-constructs-a-history-from-south-africas-shadows.html?_r=1

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Auction: Historic, Modern & Contemporary Art, 27th Mar, 2017

The Inaugural Cape Auction offed a diverse range of top-quality historic, modern and contemporary works. With a focus on critically engaged art and a curated approach, seasoned and new collectors competed to acquire significant works.

Aspire’s commitment to the growth of the art market saw international records broken in recognition of exiled South African artists. Louis Maqhubela’s Exiled King, a definitive, politically motivated work, sold for R341,040 - three times his previous record, and Albert Adams’ Untitled (Four Figures with Pitchforks), his first appearance at auction, sold for R136,416. Top prices were also achieved for established artists including J.H Pierneef, William Kentridge, and Edoardo Villa, and contemporary artwork fared exceptionally with record prices for David Brown, Steven Cohen, Mohau Modisakeng, Moshekwa Langa, and Mikhael Subotzky.


Friday 24 March 2017 | 10 am – 7 pm
Saturday 25 March 2017 | 10 am – 5 pm
Sunday 26 March 2017 | 10 am – 4 pm

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