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COURT PAINTING (article first published : 2005-07-21)

The Tatham Art Gallery is inviting members of the public to view artists at work over the first weekend in August. In collaboration with Justice and Women (JAW – an NGO based in the Magistrate’s Court which assists women with maintenance issues), the Tatham Art Gallery, is planning a project designed to improve the atmosphere in the local Magistrate’s Court by putting artworks onto the walls of the third floor.

The Gallery has identified a number of old unused frames and artists are invited to come and create appropriate artworks to fill the frames. This will take place during the weekend of August 6 and 7.

Artists such as Brendan Bell, Suren Naidoo, Ian Calder, and Petros Ghebrehiwot have already committed to the project. These completed artworks will be exhibited in the Gallery from August 16 to September 18. At the end of September, the artworks will be moved down to the Magistrate’s court where they will be hung in the passages on the third floor outside the JAW offices and unveiled during an official function.

The overall vision is for visual arts to be a vehicle for the messaging of social issues. The aim is to make the cold, uninviting atmosphere in the Pietermaritzburg Magistrate’s Court more humane by displaying artworks on the walls. Each artwork will be accompanied by a plaque indicating the name of the artist responsible for creating the work and the name of the supporting partner.

Members of the public can be involved in a number of ways. Artists interested in participating in the project should contact the Tatham Art Gallery for an Artist’s Brief.

For those wishing to support the project, a pledge of R1,000 will contribute significantly towards the costs of creating one artwork. It will also provide public acknowledgement of the supporter’s commitment to making the Magistrate’s Court a less intimidating, more humane place. For those unable to pledge R1,000, the project needs additional empty frames as well as donations of food and drink for the weekend of August 6 and 7.

Further information from Bryony Clark or Gerhi Janse Van Vuuren at the Tatham Art Gallery or send pledges of R1,000 to Tatham Art Gallery, PO Box 321, Pietermaritzburg, 3200.




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