Alex Abrahams was born in Cape Town in 1991 and studied Drama and Sociology at the University of Cape Town. In 2014 he interned at the Iziko South African National Gallery Annexe, working with Education and Public Programmes art educators.
During the course of his programme at the CCA, he intends on exploring the role of illustration in community development.
Adele van Heerden was born in Cape Town in 1989. She studied Fine Arts at the Ruth Prowse School of Art from 2008-2010. From 2011-2014 she studied History and Politics at the University of South Africa. She has been curating small pop-up exhibitions for the last two years in various urban locations, and has worked as an intern at Yellowwoods Art. She is a member and manager of Untitled Studios, a new and dynamic art studio space on the fringe of Cape Town.
During the course of the year she intends on exploring the effect that exhibitions and museums have had on nationalism and the imagining of culture in South Africa. She is also particularly interested in the dynamic interplay that fine art collections can have with social history and natural history collections.
Dexter Sagar was born in 1990 in Pietermaritzburg, KwaZulu-Natal. He received a BA Honours in Fine Arts from the University of KwaZulu-Natal (2012), and a PGCE in Senior Phase and FET from the University of Cape Town (2014). He is an artist, a qualified teacher and a student curator. He is concerned with questioning representations of race, gender, sexuality and masculinity in visual and communication culture.
Dexter has assisted and interned at private and government-funded high schools in KwaZulu-Natal and the Western Cape. He has curated student exhibitions in KwaZulu-Natal, and is currently the head designer at UCT Radio in Cape Town. He is also a former junior member of the Friends of the Tatham Art Gallery committee (FOTAG) in Pietermaritzburg (2012 – 2013).
During the course of his programme at the CCA he intends on exploring the representation of the figure in relation to sexuality, race and gender in South Africa’s galleries and museums.
Nala Xaba was born in 1992 in Johannesburg. She completed a Bachelor of Commerce in Politics, Philosophy and Economics at the University of Cape Town in 2014. While completing her undergraduate degree, she had the opportunity to assist with the logistical coordination and curatorship of a number of exciting curatorial projects such as The Rise and Fall of Apartheid (curated by Okwui Enwayzor), Queer in Africa (Zethu Matebeni and Jabu Pereira) and Twenty/20 A Clearer Vision: Growing the Mandela Legacy (Carol Brown). She was also a panelist and intern at The Franschoek Literary Festival in 2014.
She is particularly intrigued by cross-disciplinary curatorship of festivals featuring a wide range of artistic disciplines – from the spoken and written word to film, theatre, dance, visual arts and music. Her thematic interests include race, gender, ethical business practice (and by extension, corporate social responsibility), education and edutainment and the question of the socio-political purpose of the born-free generation. During the course of her programme at the CCA, she intends to explore the power and implications of self-representation and group identification on rediscovering untold and mistold histories.
Michelle Mlati was born in Tzaneen in 1993 and educated at the University of Cape Town. She holds a BSocSci in Public Policy & Administration and Social Anthropology. She is a member of the United Nations Association of South Africa, UCT and has interned at The United Nations Information Centre in Pretoria in 2013.
Michelle is concerned with space and the making of place in the museum and built environment, the idea of ‘‘curating a city,’’ and in museum policy. She is interested in public art and how it is incorporated into the built environment in the form of various installations and heritage sites. She is also fascinated by photographic archives as a place for forming public discourses on public issues.
During the course of her programme at the CCA, she intends to explore the display of art, installations and objects in unconventional spaces such as those outside of the white cube. She wants to explore how these can be incorporated back into the conventional gallery space and explore how different spaces reconfigure and add new meaning to objects around the notion of preservation. Her research interests are to explore how cities can incorporate art institutions and public displays that can be assimilated into the built environment to help make cities more globally competitive. She wishes to explore how curatorship, as a fundamental framework, can be used to explore the opportunities presented by globalisation to mainstream the Art, Culture and Heritage sector.
Amber Knox was born in Durban, South Africa in 1991. She completed her undergraduate education at the University of Cape Town in 2014, with a BA in English and History.
She has a particular interest in the idea of palimpsests–in terms of how the past overlaps with the present–as well as how space and medium intersect, whether it be in terms of curating the physical or the virtual.
During the course of her programme at the CCA, she intends to explore how poetics and practice can become amicable.
Philiswa Lila was born in Mthatha, Eastern Cape in 1988. She completed her undergraduate at the Tshwane University of Technology (TUT) in 2010, graduating with a degree in Fine and Applied Arts majoring in painting. She has worked as a part-time lecturer at the Tshwane University of Technology, teaching painting to second and third year students. Before teaching, she volunteered as an Education Assistant at the Pretoria Art Museum. In her role as Education Assistant, she was introduced to the museum collection (including research on the collection) and conducted guided tours for tertiary students, educators and school pupils.
She is concerned with art education, working with museum collections, archival work and contemporary art practice.
Sinazo Chiya was born in Durban. She completed a BA in Art History and English Literature and a Postgraduate Diploma in Journalism at Rhodes University.
During the course of her programme at the CCA, she intends on exploring the role the curated space plays in creating value. Her interest lies in the role of the intersecting space between art as aesthetic practice and art as commodity in contemporary society.
Daniël Geldenhuys was born in Cape Town in 1993. He studied journalism and art history at UCT, working at the student newspaper in his free time. Passionate about fashion publishing, he launched a digital style supplement for the newspaper which provided mentorship for student photographers, models, and stylists.
During the course of his programme at the CCA, he intends to explore local fashion photography with a specific focus on local designers and how they are represented.
Gcotyelwa Mashiqa was born in Johannesburg in 1985. Gcotyelwa is a Fine Art graduate from the Central University of Technology, Free State. In 2004-5, she was a student at Arts and Media Access Centre (AMAC, formerly known as CAP) in Cape Town. While a senior student at AMAC, she participated in a students’ group exhibition, between students from Wik’s People’s College, Uppsala in Sweden and AMAC in Cape Town. The exhibition was initially showcased in Cape Town, where Gcotyelwa exhibited a series of black-and-white photographs titled “Through the looking hole”. The exhibition was later displayed in the Multicultural Centre in Stockholm, where it was curated by Gabi Ngcobo and entitled “Women Spaces/Kvinniliga Rum/ Imiba yethu”.
From 2013-14 she joined the National Department of Arts and Culture in Pretoria as an intern for the Cultural Development: Events and Technical Services Unit.
This year she wants to look at the deep ideologies rooted in collections. She hopes to re-use historical materials in ways which create new experiences. Her primary research interest is to explore the museum object in relation to space and time.
Nina Carew was born in Johannesburg in 1993, and educated for her undergraduate degree at the University of Pretoria. She is interested in psychosocial issues that South Africans face in a post-colonial setting. More specifically, issues of racial identity, feminism, South African violence, the effects of the apartheid regime; and how they all impact ones psychological development or state.
Her undergraduate degree allowed her to explore the social sciences as well as the arts. She completed her undergraduate in Psychology and Visual Culture Studies in 2014, and plans to link the two schools of thought in her research project.
Charis de Kock was born in South Africa in 1993, and educated at the University of Cape Town. She received her BA with distinction in Visual and Art History and Italian Language and Literature in 2014. Her interests lie in Art History, Curatorship, Music and Psychology, among others. She has worked with the Wits Art Museum, the Jeanetta Blignaut Art Consultancy, South African Visual Art Historians and most recently as an intern at the Peggy Guggenheim Collection in Venice, Italy.
During the course of her programme at the CCA, she intends on exploring the interaction between music and visuality, phenomenology and curatorship, and new museology.
Dylan Owen was born in Johannesburg in 1992, and educated at the University of Cape Town. He is concerned with sound, the marriage between sound and image, and performance. He studied a BA in Theatre and Performance and was nominated for a Fleur Du Cap after his final year of study.
During the course of his programme at the CCA, he intends on exploring the curation of sound both within and outside of the museum space.
Hedwig van der Merwe was born in Pretoria in South Africa, and educated at the University of Pretoria. She studied Visual Culture Studies and literature and graduated in 2014.
During the course of her programme at the CCA, she intends to explore the intersections between Visual Culture Studies and curatorial practice. She is interested in the way in which popular culture influences and mediates the “museum experience”. She plans to examine how visual media is able to function as a “curatorial intervention”.
Antonia was born in the North West of England, and educated at the University of Reading. She is concerned with the control exhibitions have over the body, both visually and practically. This field of interest manifested in an ongoing colloborative project (with both performative and sculptural aspects) titled The Pierre Monroe Group. The group was established in 2013 and comprises researching, designing, building, negotiating and evaluating the workplace.
During the course of her programme at the CCA, she intends to continue working with designing objects for the workplace along with interjections of curatorial practice. Her research project interests are, firstly, the demand for a ‘pop up’ art space combining both art and design forms. And secondly, the idea to connect developing, working and educating environments within public spaces in Cape Town- making it a creative scene rather than a competitive one.
Barnabas was born in Wedza, Zimbabwe. He is a graduate of Hillside Teachers’ College (Education Diploma; 2002), Midlands State University (B.A. Honours Archaeology; 2008), Stellenbosch University (MPhil in Ancient Cultures; 2013). Barnabas was briefly attached to the Archaeology Department of The Zimbabwe Military Museum.
Being a passionate photographer, Barnabas is fascinated by the detail in a picture – “it’s worth more than a thousand words”. Therefore, in his time at the CCA he looks forward to learning more about curating old photographs and various other fine arts products.
Londiwe Sangweni, born in Pietermaritzburg in 1984, studied Fine Art at Durban University of Technology, majoring in Art Theory and Ceramics. During her studies she conducted research on death and was particularly interested in symbols of death, as well as the role it plays in historical and contemporary art.
This year she is interested in exploring the importance of the exhibition space itself, and the impact it has on artists’ works; as well as how anthropological information can be used in curatorial practice.