Thembalethu Manqunyana

WESTERN AFRICAN IDEOLOGY

7 - 30 November

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About Us

The Ron Belling Art Gallery was established in 2000 in Port Elizabeth. The focus has gradually shifted over the years with the changing times and the growing interest in the visual arts arena. The Gallery name has since been changed to the Gutsche Family Investment Art Gallery (GFI Art Gallery) and the building has over the years been sensitively adjusted to accommodate its ever changing role.

The Gallery is a landmark building on Park Drive in Port Elizabeth and is one of the finest examples of Art Deco architecture in the city. In 1936, Axel Stockelbach, then managing director of Ford South Africa, commissioned the first woman Architect to qualify in South Africa, Gertruida Brinkman, to design his house, "Ridgewood".

The house was purchased in 1988 by Port Elizabeth businessman, Philipp Rowland Gutsche Senior. On his death in 2000, leaving behind a legacy of charity and goodwill, it was his wish that the residence be converted into an art gallery.

The purpose at the time was to house the Ron Belling Military Aviation Collection of Oil Paintings which had been acquired by the Gutsche family.

To this day Mr Gutsche's daughter, Dorothea Moors, chairs the Gallery Board and together with the Board Members and Gallery Staff, Mr Gutsche’s legacy is upheld through the passionate promotion of visual arts in the Eastern Cape and beyond. 

About

Current Exhibition

THEMBALETHU MANQUNYANA

Artist statement:
Inspired by Picasso, Jean-Michel Basquiat and the exaggeration of African expressionism, Thembalethu’s work is a breath of fresh air pregnant with positive energies.
Fuelled by creativity lived in his experience with a lovely sense of joie d’ vivre, Thembalethu is very spiritual and paints from the heart, a space breathed upon him by his ancestors. His art pieces come from inside, painted out for the naked eye to see.
Thembalethu skilfully and purposefully brings together a host of disparate traditions, practices and styles to create a fresh and unique visual narrative. He exemplifies how emerging African artists today reintroduce the human face and human figure in their work, (inspired by the African mask) after the wide success of modern conceptualism.
The African mask, is a way in which he paints, as the ancestors have always hidden their identity. His beliefs, values and way of life are depicted in his non-conformist way of bringing his paintings to life.
Thembalethu’s Free Form art style is a true depiction of himself, that of being a free-thinker and free spirit in a modern world.
His latest offering entitled “Western African Ideology” intertwines Western theory and African theory, which compels the two to reflect on identity.
Thembalethu believes that by bringing these two cultures together, total rebirth of humanity is conceived.

Upcoming Exhibitions

The Creative Block 2018
6 December 2018

The Creative Block, administered by Spier Arts Trust invites professional artists to participate in this artist career development opportunity.
The project provides a fun platform for experimentation, with many emerging and established ar ...

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