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Newtown Prepares for Opening Night of Kudzanai Chiurai’s State of the Nation (3 November)

PositionsIn the following article in the City Press, Charl Blignaut speaks to artist Kudzanai Chiurai about his plans for the opening night of his forthcoming exhibition, State of the Nation.

State of the Nation, which opens this Thursday, 3 November at 50 Gwigwi Mrwebi Street in Newtown, includes – alongside Chiurai’s distinctive hyperreal photographs – paintings, drawings, video and sound installations, as well as performance pieces.

According to Chiurai, the opening night will feature performances by Thandiswa Mazwai and Zaki Ibrahim and, if rumours turn out to be true, Mos Def (who Chiurai apparently considers “a friend”).

It all sounds a bit rock star at first – the plans for the opening night of 31-year-old Kudzanai Chiurai’s State of the Nation exhibition. Open to the public, the Newtown street will be closed off and a throne installed in the middle. Thandiswa Mazwai and Zaki Ibrahim will appear live, and word has it that US rapper Mos Def may join them. Chiurai counts him as a friend.

But this isn’t a street party. The throne is made from replicated human body parts and will be surrounded by barbed wire. From it, Ibrahim will recite political speeches by African dictators. Mazwai will sing to a film of the Last Supper featuring a black female Jesus and a muti murder.

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Image courtesy the Goodman Gallery


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