Mohau Modisakeng










Standard Bank Young Artist Award - 2016

Ditaola - 2014

Ga bose gangwe - 2013

Inzilo - 2013

Material, metaphor and the black body are the tools that Mohau Modisakeng uses to explore the influence of South Africa’s violent history that has been ignored in today’s society, on how we understand our cultural, political, and social roles as human beings in post-colonial Africa and in particular post-apartheid South Africa.
Represented through film, large-scale photographic prints, installations and performances, his “work doesn’t start off with an attempt to portray violence but it becomes mesmerising because although we might recognise history as our past, the body is indifferent to social changes, so it remembers.”

Born in Soweto, an epicentre of black urbanity and cosmopolitan culture, the multi-award winning Mohau Modisakeng is a product of Cape Town’s Michaelis School of Fine Art. Mentored by Jane Alexander and predominantly working and training in sculpture, he completed his undergraduate degree in 2009 then completed his Masters degree at the same institution. He was awarded the SASOL New Signatures Award for 2011 and has exhibited at Armory Show, New York (2016); Saatchi Gallery, London (2012); Dak’Art Biennale, Dakar (2012); Focus 11 and Basel (2011). In 2013 Modisakeng produced an ambitious new video work in association with Samsung as a special project for the 2013 FNB Joburg Art Fair. His work is included in public collections such as the Johannesburg Art Gallery, IZIKO South African National Gallery, Cape Town and SAATCHI Gallery, London as well as significant private collections such as Zeitz MOCAA. He currently lives and works between Johannesburg and Cape Town.

Bachelor of Art in Fine Art, Michaelis School of Fine Art, Cape Town, 2009
Master of Art in Fine Art, Michaelis School of Fine Art, Cape Town, 2015

Awards and Residencies

The Standard Bank Young Artists Award, Johannesburg, South Africa

The Standard Bank Award, Johannesburg, South Africa
Nirox Foundation Residency, Johannesburg, South Africa
Segera Retreat and the Zeitz Foundation Residency, Segera, Kenya

Winner, SASOL New Signatures Art Competition, Pretoria
IAAB - International Artists Exchange Program, Basel

Finalist, MTN New Contemporaries Awards, Durban
Spier Residency Award, Gyeonggi Creation Center, South Korea

Merrill Lynch Scholarship, University of Cape Town, Cape Town

Solo Exhibitions

Land of Zanj, Leaving th Echo Chamber, Sharjah Biennial 14, UAE
Passage, Jordan Schnitzer Museum of Art, Oregon, USA
Gabose gangwe, Video Brasil, Sao Paolo

Zion, The Armory Show, Galerie Ron Mandos, New York City, USA
Passage, Art Capital, Szentendre, Hungary
Passage, Spencer Museum, Kansas, USA

Passage, LOOP Video Art Fair, Galerie Ron Mandos, Barcelona, Spain
Solo presentation, Amsterdam Art Fair, Galerie Ron Mandos, Amsterdam,NL
Passage, Venice Biennale, Venice, Italy 
Solo presentation, Art Brussels, Galerie Ron Mandos, Brussels, Belgium 
Lefa la Ntate, Johannes Stegmann Art Gallery, University of the Free State, South Africa
Lefa la Ntate, Tatham Art Gallery Pietermaritzburg, South Africa
Lefa la Ntate, Standard Bank Gallery, Johannesburg, South Africa

Lefa la Ntate, National Arts Festival, Grahamstown, South Africa
Lefa la Ntate, Nelson Mandela Metropolitan Art Museum, Port Elizabeth, South Africa
Lefa la Ntate, IZIKO South African National Gallery, Cape Town, South Africa
Adam Aronson Fine Arts Center, Laumeier Sculpture Park, St. Louis, USA 
BOPHIRIMA, solo exhibition, Tyburn Gallery, London, United Kingdom
ENDABENI, solo exhibition, Galerie Ron Mandos, Amsterdam, The Netherlands 

Mohau Modisakeng, Chavonnes Battery Museum (in partnership with Zeitz MOCAA), Cape Town, South Africa
KE KGOMO YA MOSHATE, Kunstraum Innsbruck, Innsbruck, Austria 

Ditaola, BRUNDYN+, Cape Town, South Africa
Inzilo, LOOP 2014, Barcelona, Spain
Loop Barcelona, Hotel Catalonia Ramblas, Barcelona, Spain

Untitled: Sasol New Signatures award for 2011, Pretoria Art Museum, Pretoria, South Africa

Ibutho, Side Gallery, Michael Stevenson, Cape Town, South Africa


Group Exhibitions

Waterworld, curated by Holly + Zachary Cahill, Glass Curtain Gallery, Chicago, USA 
In Their Own Form, Museum of Contemporary Photography, Chicago, USA

Le jour qui vient, curated by Marie-Ann Yemsi, Galerie des Galeries, Galeries Lafayette, Paris, France 

Lagos Photo Festival, Lagos, Nigeria
Re(as)sisting Narratieves, Framer Framed, Amsterdam, NL
62nd International Short Film Festival, Oberhausen, Germany
Prefer Life, Reydan Weiss Collection, The Weserburg, Bremen, Germany
Once in a Lifetime, film program, Oude Kerk, Amsterdam, The Netherlands
After The Thrill Is Gone: Fashion, Politics and Culture in Contemporary South-African Art, Western Michigan University, Kalamazoo, Michigin, USA
When Tomorrow Comes, Wits Art Museum, Johannesburg / Michaelis Galleries, Cape Town, South Africa

Joburg Art Fair, Whatiftheworld, Sandton Convention Centre, Johannesburg, South Africa
NIROX Winter Sculpture Fair, Nirox Foundation, Johannesburg, South Africa
Dis Place, MoCADA, New York, New York
Broken English, Tyburn Gallery, Londen, UK
Unseen photofair, Galerie Ron Mandos, Amsterdam, The Netherlands
What remains is tomorrow, the South African Pavilion, Sale D’Armi Arsenale, la Biennale de Venezia
NIROXSCULPTURE: Winter 2015, Nirox foundation, Johannesburg, South Africa
AFIRIperFOMA, Lagos, Nigeria
I am not a man and a brother? I am not a woman and a sister, Archer Gallery,Vancouver

Anyway the Wind Blows, Brundyn+, Cape Town, South Africa
Here Today, The Old Sorting Office, London, UK
Performing Portraiture, Museum of Fine Art, Boston, USA
Fearless Renewal, MC Theater, Amsterdam, Netherlands
Ukukhumula, GIPCA Live Art Festival, City Hall, Cape Town, SOuth Africa
Barongwa: Blindspot, Grahamstown Arts Festival, Grahamstown, South Africa
Personal/Political, 21C Museum, Louisville, USA
Art Against the Wall: An Artist Response to Civil Wars, curated by Radcliffe Bailey, Gallery 72, Atlanta, USA
Brave New World…20 Years of Democracy, IZIKO South African National Gallery, Cape Town, South Africa
START Art Fair, Saatchi Gallery, London, UK
!Kauru 2014: Rerouting Dialogue 1994-2014, UNISA Gallery, Pretoria
VOLTA NY, Brundyn+Gonsalves, New York, USA

Ceci n’est pas une Summer Show, BRUNDYN+, Cape Town, South Africa
Biennale Internationa d’Art Contemporain (BIAC), Fort de France, Martinique
Am I not a Man and a Brother? Am I not a Woman and a Sister, James Harris Gallery, Seattle, USA
Inzilo, Video Art Powered by Samsung special project, FNB Joburg Art Fair, Johannesburg, South Africa
FNB Joburg Art Fair, BRUNDYN +, Johannesburg, South Africa

Sera, Master of Fine Art exhibition, Michaelis School of Fine Art, Cape Town, South Africa
NEWSFEED: Anonymity & Social Media in African Revolutions and Beyond, MoCADA, New York, USA
Material Representation, BRUNDYN + GONSALVES, Cape Town, South Africa
FNB Joburg Art Fair, BRUNDYN + GONSALVES, Johannesburg, South Africa
Dak’Art Biennale, Dakar, Senegal
Uneveness Exhibition, National Gallery of Zimbabwe, Harare
Out of Focus: Photography, Saatchi Gallery, London, UK
Exuberance Project Exhibition, Mandela Rhodes Gallery, Cape Town, South Africa

Implemented Environments, Brundyn + Gonsalves, Cape Town, South Africa
Business Day, FNB Joburg Art Fair, Johannesburg, South Africa
Focus 11, Basel, Switzerland

A RE FANON, with Lerato Bereng, Blank Projects, Cape Town, South Africa
This is our time, Brodie/Stevenson, Johannesburg, South Africa
Greatest Hits, AVA, Cape Town, South Africa
MTN New Contemporarie, Durban, South Africa
Spier Contemporary, Cape Town, South Africa

Ugufa Unezindaba, Graduate exhibition, Michaelis School of Fine Art, Cape Town, South Africa