To coincide with the publication of Penny Siopis: Time and Again by Gerrit Olivier, the South African National Gallery has announced the first retrospective exhibition by Penny Siopis, also titled Time and Again.
The exhibition, which opens to the public on 18 December, will contain work from collections in the Johannesburg Art Gallery; the Rupert Art Foundation; Wits Art Museum; William Humphreys Museum and numerous private collectors.
Siopis works within the genres of painting, sculpture, video and multimedia installations, exploring narratives of personal and collective history, and themes of trauma, shame and loss.
A comprehensive book tracing the trajectory of Penny Siopis artistic production is being published by Wits University Press titled Penny Siopis: Time and Again. The book will be made available to purchase at the South African National Gallery throughout the duration of the exhibition. Edited by Gerrit Olivier this book contains essays and interviews by leading artists, critics and cultural commentators that contextualize this prolific artist’s contribution to South African art history.
Time and Again is a retrospective look at three and a half decades of Siopis’ creative production and draws on the recurring themes of history, personal and collective memory and trauma. Although Siopis’ artwork is clearly grounded in the present, both past and future are deeply implicated in its content and physical appearance. The processes of change, decay and ageing, (all traces of the passage of time), are integral to her approach and highlight Siopis’ skillful ability to make time tangible through her manipulation of process, chance and materiality.
This exhibition provides the visitor with a unique opportunity to trace the evolution of Penny Siopis’ ideas, themes and techniques and to see their development in the context of the country’s history. This presentation will feature key examples from her seminal bodies of work which include her early Cake paintings that gained the artist international renown; her seminal History paintings through to her Shame and Pinky Pinky series and the more recent ink and glue paintings. Audiences will also be given an opportunity to experience Penny Siopis object filled installations as well as view films which speak to the artist’s personal history and South Africa’s collective history.
This exhibition will have a strong educational component drawing in learners and scholars from schools and tertiary institutions.