Honours in Curatorship student wins the Absa L'Atelier Gerard Sekoto Award

12 Sep 2019 - 10:30

Last week, honour in curatorship student, Phoka Nyokong, won the the Absa L'Atelier Gerard Sekoto Award for his three photographic works printed on aluminium. The award, which was started in 2004, has always been a way of honouring Gerard Sekoto's work and legacy. Nyokong's work was seen to do this in the way it represents present day life, social anxieties, fears, gender (mis)representations and performativity. He says of the work: 

...​basically this work explores my love for African cultural rituals and ceremonies, particularly West African masquerade rituals. These dances perform a ritual meant to communicate with ancestors in rain-making prayers and other sacred occasions.

My work re-imagines the masquerade by suggesting that it also speaks to gender misrepresentations and meditations on social anxiety.


The award is given to a artist between the age of 25 and 35 that shows the most potential and with the award also comes a three month residency at the Cite Internationale des Arts next year. Below is Nyokong's "Embrace III" one in the triptych that he entered into the competition.