MADRAGOA
Buhlebezwe Siwani
Cape Town, South Africa, 1987
About the Artist

Buhlebezwe Siwani works with performance, photography, sculpture and installation. Siwani’s work interrogates the patriarchal framing of the black female body and black female experience within the South African context. As an initiated Sangoma, a spiritual healer that works within the space of the death and the living, Siwani focused her artistic practice into rituality and the relationship between Christianity and African spirituality. Central to her work is her own body, which operates in multiple registers as subject, object, form, medium, material, language and site. Her work can be described, although not literally, as the documentation of a diverse set of performances, which are rendered through video, photography, sculpture, installation and works on paper. Each of her projects deals with the relationship between ancestral rituals and modern life, touching social and political topics, such as the female body, black communities, histories of colonization and the paradoxes of our contemporary society, all seen through the filter of the artist’s own biography and experience. 

Buhlebezwe Siwani was born at Johannesburg, South Africa in 1987 and currently lives and works between Cape Town and  Amsterdam. 

She completed her BAFA at the Wits School of Arts in Johannesburg in 2011 and her MFA at the Michealis School of Fine Arts in 2015. 

Solo exhibitions include:  Dedisa ubumnyama, Cairns Art Gallery, Cairns (2021); ukuqhaqha, Camera Work, Palazzo Rasponi, Ravenna (2021); Inkanyamba, Galeria  Municipal  de Arte de Almada (2020); othunjiweyo, Galeria Madragoa, Lisbon (2019); Qab’Imbola, WHATIFTHEWORLD, Cape Town (2018);  Imfazwe yenkaba, Galeria Madragoa, Lisbon (2017); Ingxowa  yegqwirhakazi, WHATIFTHEWORLD, Cape Town (2016).

Recent group exhibitions include: The Power of My Hands, Paris Museum of Modern Art, Paris (2021); Goddesses of Healing, Mbassy, Hamburg (2021); Casablanca Biennial, Casablanca (2021); Sonsbeek,. Arnhem (2021); Living, Forgiving, Remembering, Kunsthal 3,14,Bergen (2021); Witness: Afro Perspectives from the Jorge M. Perez collection, Miami (2020); 14th Curitiba Biennial, Curitiba (2020); Viral portraits, Moderna galerija/Museum of Modern Art, Ljubljana (2020); Materiality, Iziko National Gallery, Cape Town (2020); Present Passing: South by Southeast, Osage Art Foundation, Hong Kong (2019); Bamako Encounters, Mali (2019); Ngoma: Art and Cosmology, Johannesburg Art Gallery, Johannesburg (2019); Cosmopolis #2: Rethinking the Human, Centre Pompidou, Paris (2019); The Third Bank, Bienal Ano Zero, Coimbra (2019), Tell Freedom, KaDE Museum, Amsefoort (2018); White blood blue night, Centre d'art contemporain d'Alfortville, Alfortville (2018); Deep Memory, Kalmar Art Museum (2017); Art/Afrique, The Louis Vuitton Foundation, Paris (2017); 

Portfolio

 

BS_PORTFOLIO_01'03'2021.pdf
8.42 MB - pdf — download

 

Selected Press and Texts

“Chickens are Thrown at My Body and Blood is Splattered onto My Face”, Interview for Elephant Magazine, 2021

 

Buhlebezwe Siwani by Miriam Bouteba, Nataal, 2020

 

Ginevra Bria on Buhlebezwe Siwani's UKhongolose, MADRAzine #8, May 2020

 

 

Video documentation

Artist Talk: Buhlebezwe Siwani, The Photographers' Gallery, 2021

 

Interview of Buhlebezwe Siwani at Fondation Louis Vuitton, 2018

 

Sangoma and Artist, interview for The Narrative, 2018

 

 

 

Selected Exhibitions

 

Living, Forgiving, Remembering

Installation view at Museum Arnhem, Arnhem, Netherlands

October 4th, 2020 - February 14th, 2021

 

Witness: Afro Perspectives from the Jorge M. Pérez Collection.

Installation view at El Espacio 23, Miami, USA

November 30th, 2020 - January 31st, 2021

 

INKANYAMBA

Installation view at Galeria Municipal de Arte de Almada, Almada, Portugal

February 22nd - April 18th, 2020

 

INKANYAMBA

Installation view at Galeria Municipal de Arte de Almada, Almada, Portugal

February 22nd - April 18th, 2020

 

INKANYAMBA

Installation view at Galeria Municipal de Arte de Almada, Almada, Portugal

February 22nd - April 18th, 2020

 

INKANYAMBA

Installation view at Galeria Municipal de Arte de Almada, Almada, Portugal

February 22nd - April 18th, 2020

 

INKANYAMBA

Installation view at Galeria Municipal de Arte de Almada, Almada, Portugal

February 22nd - April 18th, 2020

 

INKANYAMBA

Installation view at Galeria Municipal de Arte de Almada, Almada, Portugal

February 22nd - April 18th, 2020

 

 

OTHUNJIWEYO

Installation view at Galeria Madragoa, Lisbon, Portugal

March 22nd - May 4th, 2019

 

OTHUNJIWEYO

Installation view at Galeria Madragoa, Lisbon, Portugal

March 22nd - May 4th, 2019

 

OTHUNJIWEYO

Installation view at Galeria Madragoa, Lisbon, Portugal

March 22nd - May 4th, 2019

 

OTHUNJIWEYO

Installation view at Galeria Madragoa, Lisbon, Portugal

March 22nd - May 4th, 2019

 

Tell Freedom. 15 South African Artist

Installation view at Kunsthal Kade, Amersfoort, Netherlands

January 27th - May 6th, 2018

 

 

Imfazwe yenkaba

Installation view at Galeria Madragoa, Lisbon, Portugal,

November 18th - January 13th, 2018

 

Imfazwe yenkaba

Installation view at Galeria Madragoa, Lisbon, Portugal,

November 18th - January 13th, 2018

 

Imfazwe yenkaba

Installation view at Galeria Madragoa, Lisbon, Portugal,

November 18th - January 13th, 2018

 

 

uKhongolose Part II

Performance at Appleton Square, Lisbon, Portugal

November 16th, 2017

 

Anozero’17, Bienal de Arte Contenporânea de Coimbra

Installation view at Coimbra, Portugal

November 11th – December 30th, 2017

 

Those ghels

Performance at Greatmore Studios, Cape Town

2017

 

Africa Raccontare un Mondo

Performance at Padiglione d'Arte Contemporanea, Milan, Italy

June 28th, 2017

 

Being There: South Africa, a contemporary scene

Installation view at Fondation Louis Vuitton, Paris, France

April 26th - September 4th, 2017

 

Ingxowa yeGqwirhakazi

Installation view at WHATIFTHEWORLD, Cape Town, South Africa

November 17th - December 3rd, 2016

 

Qunusa! Buhle

Performance at Any Given Sunday, Khayelitsha, Cape Town, South Africa

2016

 

The Incantation of the Disquieting Muse - On Divinity, Parallel - and Suprarealities or the Exorcisement of Witchery

Performance at Savvy Contemporary, Berlin, Germany

2016

 

iJoowish

Performance at Live Architecture: the 55 Minute Hour, Cape Town, South Africa

2016

 

Inzilo; Ngoba ngihlala kwabafileyo

Performance at Michaelis Galleries, Cape Town, South Africa

2015