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TSWELONALA (article first published : 2001-05-23)

Tswelonala, a Sotho word for “the time of harvest”, is the title of an exhibition of paintings and sculptures by up-and-coming artist Vincent Tshulupi which will run in the BAT Centre’s Menzi Mcunu Gallery from June 8 to 30.

Born in 1974 in Mount Frere in the Eastern Cape, Tshulupi discovered his artistic flair while at the Mariazell Mission School in Matatiele. Like many other young boys of the time, he developed a strong interest in modelling cows out of river clay and making wire cars.

When his family moved to Durban, he soon enrolled in Saturday morning art classes at the Durban Art Gallery under the guidance of teacher Pat Khoza. He then joined the African Art Centre classes held at Technikon Natal before joining the Community Arts Project, a project specialising in mural painting in and around Durban, in 1995.

Since then, he has exhibited in a number of exhibitions in Johannesburg and Durban but Tswelonala is his first solo exhibition.

Vincent Tshulupi likens an exhibition to a harvest -- the fruits of an artist's time of creativity. "There is always a time for a harvest -- sometimes great and at times, nothing at all. This does not mean the artist should fold their hands and stop producing artworks,” he says.




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