February 14, 2011

South Africa’s Caversham Press to be highlighted at Boston University

Boston University College of Fine Arts School of Visual Arts
South Africa: Artists, Prints, Community / Twenty Five Years at The Caversham PressThree Artists at the Caversham Press – Deborah Bell, Robert Hodgins and William Kentridge

Featuring over 120 works by 70 emergent and established artists, the exhibition South Africa: Artists, Prints, Community, Twenty Five Years at The Caversham Press held in Boston University’s expansive 808 Gallery, celebrates Caversham’s multifaceted history. Through image, text, and public programming, the exhibition traces Caversham’s development in South Africa—from the founding of The Caversham Press in 1985 to the establishment of The Caversham Press Educational Trust in 1993 and finally to the formation of the Caversham Centre for Artists and Writers in 2000—while simultaneously illustrating the rich visual diversity of South African printmaking.

The Boston University Art Gallery’s concurrent exhibition, Three Artists at The Caversham Press: Deborah Bell, Robert Hodgins and William Kentridge, features the work of three South African artists who were central figures in the founding years of Caversham, and among the first artists to make prints there. Bell, Hodgins, and Kentridge forged long-term relationships with both Caversham and with each other that led to the creation of three collaborative print portfolios: “Hogarth in Johannesburg (1986),” “Little Morals (1990-91),” and “Ubu Tells the Truth (1996-97).” Together, the works reflect Caversham’s early history and articulate the artists’ personal perspectives of living and creating in South Africa in the years between late apartheid and the transition to a new democracy. The exhibition comprises over 65 works, presenting selections from the three collaborative portfolios, and individual prints, including the debut of three new William Kentridge prints created specifically for the exhibition.

BU Exhibitions Director Lynne Cooney curated the exhibitions with Malcolm Christian of The Caversham Press and explains, “It was critical that the exhibitions reflect Caversham’s voice, which was made possible through two years of collaborative planning, three trips to South Africa, and endless correspondence and dialog. It was only in this unique partnership that twenty five years of printmaking could be appropriately celebrated and represented.” Prints from both exhibitions will be available for sale.

These exhibitions are supported by the Estate of Lindagrace Stephens, the Boston University Humanities Foundation, BU College of Fine Arts Dean Benjamín Juárez, and Vice President and Associate Provost for Research Andrei E. Ruckenstein.

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