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KZN SCHOOL ART (article first published : 2000-02-11)

Recently opened at the Durban Arts Gallery is the annual KZN Schools Art Exhibition. The exhibition presents selected artworks produced by senior learners at state schools in KZN and, as always, offers a fresh and joyous approach to art-making. The sheer energy and free creative thought behind the works reminds the viewer that among these youthful artists are the movers and shakers of tomorrow’s art world, those with a particularly focused talent that produces works of maturity way beyond their youthful experience.

There are works in all disciplines and all styles from drawings and ceramics to linocuts and jewellery design. And there’s a good showing of computer-generated art. The works have been selected on merit, not only in terms of quality but in terms of their originality. Many of the works are experimental and show a desire to push boundaries. Others show a more traditional approach but, generally, there is a strong emphasis on the exploration of boundaries of established genres by offering new perspectives.

This exhibition should represent a far wider range of schools but unfortunately the rationalisation and redeployment situation in KZN schools have meant that most of the arts departments have had to close. However, it is gratifying to see that those schools still offering art as a subject are forging ahead with determination and producing work of high and uncompromised standards. And placing major emphasis on strong drawing skills.

The exhibition runs until February 27.




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