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Sunday, September 10, 2023



(Right: "Isibuko" by Sakhile Mhlongo. Photographer: Thina Miya)

The KZNSA Gallery offers an invitation to attend the exhibition opening of Ukwembulwa (The Unearthing), a solo exhibition by Sakhile Mhlongo, on Friday, September 15, 2023, from 17h30 for 18h00.

Sakhile Mhlongo's life story serves as the launching element for this solo exhibition exploring his artistic practice, upbringing, and identity through portraiture.

Mhlongo showcases large-scale artworks exploring personal unspoken experiences through realistic portraits of himself, his family, and friends. The work challenges the tradition of memorialising Black bodies with monochromatic drawings, vividly-posed pictures, and hauntingly beautiful self-portraits. Some of his earlier paintings feature repurposed curtain fabrics with a vibrant colour scheme, created with acrylic and enamel paint layers on canvas.

Sakhile Mhlongo (b.1984, Empangeni, South Africa) in specializes in portraiture using acrylic and oil on fabric and canvas. He seeks ideal models to represent his interests and themes. Recently, he has reverted to using canvas, intentionally using discarded fabric to create intimacy and contemporary quality.

Mhlongo graduated from Durban University of Technology with a National Diploma in Fine Art. He has participated in grand-scale mural projects, including the Anton Lembede mural, the largest in KwaZulu-Natal. His work has been collected by the Durban Art Gallery and other private collectors. Mhlongo has participated in group exhibitions and national art competitions, and was selected as the top five artist in the Sanlam Portrait Awards in 2016.

The exhibition closes on October 8, 2023.

The KZNSA Gallery is situated at 166 Bulwer Road, Glenwood, in Durban. More information on 031 277 1705 or cell 082 220 0368 or visit