Sethembile Msezane

Sethembile Msezane is a South African artist living and working in Cape Town. Working in performance, photography, and sculpture, Msezane maps out how the process of commemorative practice informs constructions of history, mythmaking, and ultimately addresses the absence of the black female body in the monumentalisation of public spaces.
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Creative Women | Sethembile Msezane on Black Women & Colonialist Ideologies.

Sethembile Msezane is a visual artist whose performances subvert colonialist ideologies and highlight the history of black women in South Africa.

Sethembile Msezane

Sethembile Msezane

The beaded veil she wears in all her performances works as a device to take away the attention from her face and her identity. “I am embodying other women in trying to bring their histories to the forefront so we can start thinking more about Black women’s histories,” Sethembile explains. "Chapungu- The Day Rhodes Fell" (2015)

The beaded veil she wears in all her performances works as a device to take away the attention from her face and her identity. “I am embodying other women in trying to bring their histories to the forefront so we can start thinking more about Black women’s histories,” Sethembile explains. "Chapungu- The Day Rhodes Fell" (2015)

Her work engages with key debates on how the commemorating of history that has taken place in South Africa has been constructed through erasure. "Amanzamtoti" (2015)

Her work engages with key debates on how the commemorating of history that has taken place in South Africa has been constructed through erasure. "Amanzamtoti" (2015)

Her practice has been a process of connecting and acknowledging her ancestry, as well as seeking out the stories of other women on this continent, as a millennial contributing to an archive of their histories. "So Long A Letter" (2016)

Her practice has been a process of connecting and acknowledging her ancestry, as well as seeking out the stories of other women on this continent, as a millennial contributing to an archive of their histories. "So Long A Letter" (2016)

"Kwasuka Sukela" installaion image

"Kwasuka Sukela" installaion image

An installation of work from the series "Kwasuka Sukela"

An installation of work from the series "Kwasuka Sukela"

An installation from the series "Kwasuka Sukela"

An installation from the series "Kwasuka Sukela"

She employs strategies of creating self-definition that are deeply rooted in looking at her own past, be it through spirituality or relearning South African history and its alternate narratives. "Signal Her Return"

She employs strategies of creating self-definition that are deeply rooted in looking at her own past, be it through spirituality or relearning South African history and its alternate narratives. "Signal Her Return"

By examining past and present representations of black women in South African public and private domains, Msezane focuses on the omission of iconic black women in history and mythology. "Manifestations of Self"

By examining past and present representations of black women in South African public and private domains, Msezane focuses on the omission of iconic black women in history and mythology. "Manifestations of Self"

"Ngifunguma" (2016)

"Ngifunguma" (2016)

Untitled (Freedom Day) 2014

Untitled (Freedom Day) 2014

Untitled (Women's Day) 2014

Untitled (Women's Day) 2014

Untitled (Workers Day) 2014

Untitled (Workers Day) 2014

Untitled (Heritage Day)

Untitled (Heritage Day)

Untilted (Youth Day)

Untilted (Youth Day)

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