South African Ndebele artist Esther Mahlangu discusses the early years of her paining practice, her designs and pigments, and the preservation of culture in this talk at VMFA. The conversation includes Esther Mahlangu, Marriam Mahlangu, Grace Masango, and Richard Woodward (Curator of African Art).
Ester Mahlangu, Artist in Residence at VMFA in the fall of 2014, works in the traditional Ndebele style of bold, geometric patterns executed on a very large scale. In the late-nineteenth century, the Ndebele women painted the exteriors of their houses in this style as an expression of identity and pride. Over the years, with the development of commercial paints, the original earth tones created from natural pigments have changed to a brighter palette. Mahlangu is the first woman and only non-Westerner to paint one of the BMW Art Cars, following in the footsteps of the likes of Warhol and Lichtenstein. As the artist climbed scaffolding and painted without a straight edge of any sort, these large works of art evolved before visitors’ eyes over the course of a month.
Artist Radcliffe Bailey talks about his artistic process and what he hopes his art conveys. Come see "Vessel" in VMFA's permanent collection.