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Khayalethu Witbooi was born and grew up in Uitenhage in the Eastern Cape province of South Africa. After matriculating in 1995 he did a college course in draughtsmanship and started working as an illustrator for an architectural firm while doing freelance work for The Argus newspaper in Cape Town (court sketches, cartoons etc.) and later painting portraits for interested clients. In June 2010 he was selected to join the Good Hope Artistís Studio programme where he was given a studio and the opportunity to paint full-time. In December 2011 he was awarded an artistís residency at the more prestigious Greatmore Studios in Woodstock, Cape Town.

He only recently started producing the collage style paintings. This style, inspired by artists ranging from Picasso to Asha Zero, is a style of painting where it appears as if the different images were glued onto the canvas, but were, in fact, all painted and stencilled onto the canvas. Khaya is well-known for his extremely detailed stencilling, watching him work is a chilling experience.

Witbooi uses a combination of stencilling and oil painting to express his observations, usually of socio-political nature. The result is edgy and urban with an African relevance. Topics like the seeming failure of democracy to provide solutions to problems related to post-colonial and post-apartheid South Africa, human behaviour in this context and the effects of globalisation are dealt with regularly. It provides valuable insight into a world the viewer seldom had the opportunity to experience first-hand.

catalogue (issuu)

catalogue (pdf)

leaflet (pdf)

Worldart Gallery, Cape Town

E-mail: info@hayhillgallery.com