Kutlwano Moagi opens Spontaneous Inventions at Kolektivelab

The first thing I do this morning is browse through my social-media timelines, my friend has put up a Toni Morrison quote: “How bleak, unlivable, insufferable existence becomes when we are deprived of artwork.” Rings true.

Kutlwano Moagi and myself have been discussing his exhibition opening for about two weeks but just have not been getting to the point. Preparations have been keeping him busy.

Kutlwano is a lover of many art forms; jazz, literature, photography and anything born of creative expressions. The art he makes and the art others make helps him make sense of this crazy world.

The photographer, painter and aspiring upright bassist tells us his solo exhibition opens on the 1st of September 2021 at Kolektivelab, 66 Simmons Street, Johannesburg. It is curated by Ivy Rihlampfu and he collaborated with Read A Book Foundation.

I ask him a few questions which he answers in one go: “About a few months back I stepped inside the Kolektivelab for the first time, on the day there was a photography exhibition. I instantly fell in love with the space where the photographs were installed.

“We then, I and the Kolektivelab team, suggested that perhaps I could have a show at the space the following month.

“Now, as for not doing it with one of the well-known galleries, so to speak, it would have been a mission that would have taken a lot out of me. It is not that I don’t want to work with such institutions, as I have previously, I just have to bear in mind their ‘modus operandi’.

“Ivy Rihlampfu is an artist and curator I have worked with in the not so distant past. I like her work ethic and she is very much experienced in the work she does. She is also independent. Kolektive lab is independent, I am also independent, so it is somewhat a collaboration of the independent.

“Read A Book Foundation is an organization that I founded. My aspirations for the foundation are to inspire kids and adults alike to fall in love with reading books. Not only reading books but hosting things like art workshops, from dance to visual arts to filmmaking. I am sure you get my drift; this is the first instalment and we are honored to work with Kolektive Lab.”

After answering questions I have asked and questions I have not yet asked in one go, he then tells me: “I have to go, I am bored of fingering my phone.”

I remind him of an image he has to send me and he complainingly tells me that “to find it means I have to finger this smart hand device”. I hit him with a ‘LOL’ and ‘a peace out’.

Spontaneous Inventions, the exhibition inspired and named after Bobby McFerrin’s 1986 classic live album, opens 1st September 2021 at 17h00 with a walkabout on the 5th September 2021 at Kolektivelab, 66 Simmons, Johannesburg.

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