Tuesday, March 17, 2015

The Exile series [2013-present] exhibited at Art Dubai

Athi-Patra Ruga and Studio is pleased to announce its participation at Art Dubai 2015 from 18 – 21 March at Madinat Jumeirah, Dubai (Booth J6). Athi-Patra Ruga will be presenting new work from his

 ---The Exile series [2013-present] ---

The artist is represented by Whatiftheworld [ Booth J6]
Taking place each year in March, Art Dubai presents a select yet diverse line-up of contemporary artists from the UAE and around the world, across three programmes: Contemporary; Modern, devoted to masters from the Middle East, Africa and South Asia; and Marker, a curated section of artspaces that focuses each year on a particular theme or geography.


SFMOMA: Public Intimacy (2014)

Public Intimacy: Art and Other Ordinary Acts in South Africa 


Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, February 21 - June 29, 2014

Disrupting expected images of South Africa, the 25 contemporary artists and collectives featured in Public Intimacy eloquently explore the poetics and politics of the everyday. This collaboration with Yerba Buena Center for the Arts presents pictures from SFMOMA’s collection of South African photography alongside works in a broad range of media, including video, painting, sculpture, performance, and publications — most made in the last five years, and many on view for the first time on the West Coast. Coinciding with the 20th anniversary of democracy in South Africa, Public Intimacy reveals the nuances of human interaction in a country still undergoing significant change, vividly showing public life there in a more complex light.

Public Intimacy includes works by Ian Berry, Ernest Cole, David Goldblatt, Handspring Puppet Company, Nicholas Hlobo, ijusi (Garth Walker), Anton Kannemeyer, William Kentridge, Donna Kukama, Terry Kurgan, Sabelo Mlangeni, Santu Mofokeng, Billy Monk, Zanele Muholi, Sello Pesa and Vaughn Sadie with Ntsoana Contemporary Dance Theatre, Cameron Platter, Lindeka Qampi, Jo Ractliffe, Athi-Patra Ruga, Berni Searle, Penny Siopis, Mikhael Subotzky and Patrick Waterhouse, and Kemang Wa Lehulere.


Athi-Patra Ruga's ongoing performance series The Future White Women of Azania (2010‒present) features fantastical characters — usually played by the artist — whose upper bodies sprout colorful, liquid-filled balloons, while their lower bodies pose or move in stockings and heels. Drawn from both classical Greek and Roman accounts of southern Africa and activists' dreams of a pre- and post-apartheid black African utopia, Ruga's Azania occurs as a state in flux: the Future White Women's liquid-filled balloons droop and pop, and the character dissolves to reveal a performer. Ruga's new work, The Elder of Azania, introduces another shape-shifter: a spiritual figure, both king and trickster, both Xhosa's goat spirit and Vaslav Nijinsky's famous faun.
Copresented with Yerba Buena Center for the Arts as part of Public Intimacy and Live Projects 4



Athi-Patra Ruga, artist La Chica Boom, Dia Dear, Monique Jenkinson, Brontez Purnell, and Mica Sigourney, dancers

Standard Bank Young Artist Award for Performance 2015


Athi-Patra Ruga & Studio (PTYLTD) is pleased to announce the recipient of the 2015 Standard Bank Young Artist Award for Performance. The Standard Bank Young Artist
Award is arguably the most prestigious accolade to be awarded in South Africa, and is given to young South African artists who have demonstrated exceptional ability in their chosen fields.
Designed to encourage the recipients in the pursuit of their careers, a key aspect of the awards is that they guarantee the artists a place on the main programme of the next National Arts Festival. In addition to a cash prize, each of the winners receive substantial financial backing for their Festival participation, whether this involves the mounting of an exhibition or the staging of a production.

Ruga's performance pieces are a combination of processions and interventions, using the procession as a way in which to extend and deepen communication with the audience. Ruga's most recent and ambitious work titled The Future White Woman of Azania is an ongoing series of performances engaging new definitions of nationhood in relation to the autonomous body. Other themes in Ruga's works are the interrogation of utopic ideals and rhetoric, racial ideologies and the body as a communicative tool.

Recent performances include The Founding Myth staged for the opening of the South African pavilion at the 55th Venice Biennale; The Elder of Azania commissioned by the Museum of Modern Art San Francisco and YBCA as part of the exhibition 'Public Intimacy'; and Next Future hosted at the Gulbenkian Foundation in Lisbon Portugal.

We would like to congratulate Athi-Patra Ruga and his studio for this well deserved award and extend our thanks to the patrons and supporters of his work who have been instrumental in allowing us to realise this ground breaking performance work.

The Elder of Azania, 2014

Performance Stills: Performance with Xandra Barra, Dia Dear, Monique 
Jenkinson,Brontez Purnell, & Mica Sigourneys.

Costmes and audio visual material commissioned by SFMOMA 
& Yerba Buena
Centre for the Arts as part of the exhibition Public Intimacy

Photographer: Ian Reeves

The Founding Myth, 2013

Performance Stills: Site-specific performance,

five performers, audio and props

South African Pavilion, 55 La Biennale di Venezia, Venice