Tribute to Dumile Feni
Seven colour lithograph
Sam Nhlengethwa was born in the mining community of Payneville Springs in 1955 and grew up near Johannesburg. An artist of international renown, his love of jazz is as legendary as his work. His artworks are a celebration of human creative expression, although he often highlights the trials and tribulations of everyday urban life and the plight of the working class as well. He is most known for his use of collage, combining elements of drawing, painting, and photography into captivating scenes of light and form.
Sam Nhlengethwa’s ‘A Tribute to’ series is one of many iconic bodies of work by the artist and sees him paying tribute to, in his words, ‘the things that keep me going.’ Throughout the series, Nhlengethwa depicts contemporary interior scenes in which he recreates significant artworks from the artists that have inspired him. The imagined interiors reflect Nhlengethwa’s sense of the ‘mental space’ of these artists, who include Esther Mahlangu, Henri Matisse, and David Goldblatt. This work celebrates Dumile Feni and includes a depiction of the seminal African Guernica on the right, alongside Feni’s unmistakable drawings and sculptural busts.