Public opening: Kendell Geers, Voëlvry at Capital C
Date: 12 November
Time: 5:00 – 6:30 PM
Location: Capital C, Amsterdam
We are proud to present a new solo exhibition by Kendell Geers at Capital C in Amsterdam, called Voëlvry. The public opening of the exhibition will take place on Friday 12 November between 5:00 and 6:30 PM.
The exhibition Voëlvry takes its name from the Afrikaans Anti-Apartheid music movement that Kendell Geers was part of in the late 1980’s. Geers played keyboards and tape loops for the underground band KOOS that was featured on the original Voëlvry album that launched a movement that Max du Preez described as a significant movement in every social, political, cultural and musical sense of the word (Vrye Weekblad). Voëlvry invites us to meditate on the question, what does freedom mean in 2021?
ABOUT Kendell Geers
Born in May 1968, Johannesburg, South Africa
Lives and works in Brussels, Belgium
Born into a working class Afrikaans family during the height of Apartheid, Kendell Geers quickly found himself fighting a Crime Against Humanity on the front lines of activism and protest. Running away from the military regime and a six year prison sentence, he escaped to London in 1988 as a political refugee. In 1989 he moved on to New York where he found employ as Richard Prince’s full time assistant. Following the release of Nelson Mandela, Geers returned to South Africa in 1990 to help build the new democracy.
From his strong experiences as a revolutionary, he developed a psycho-social-political practice that held ethics and aesthetics to be opposite sides of the very same coin, spinning upon the tables of history. In his hands, the discourse of art history is interrogated, languages of power and ideological codes subverted, expectations smashed and belief systems transformed into aesthetic codes. The raw energy of a Punk attitude is blended with the visceral visionary philosophy of poets like Rimbaud, Blake and Burroughs in an uncanny cocktail of unexpected contrasts.
A European by descent, an African by birth, Kendell Geers work embodies the contradictions of his identity, being both Animist and Mystic, Shaman and Alchemist, Punk and Poet. The warp of popular culture is woven into the weft of poetry, painting, literature and ritual. He uses experience to colour perception, spiritualising matter and materialising spirit, mocking tradition like an iconoclast whilst celebrating history like a Medieval Monk.
Believing that art is as political as it is spiritual, Kendell Geers’ varied practice cannot be simplified, cannot be reduced to cliché or fashion. Working as an artist, musician, designer and writer, his strategies are without compromise because he believes that “Art changes the world – one perception at a time.”