Ayanda Mabulu (b.1981, King William’s Town) makes it his responsibility to paint the undocumented lives of the anonymous masses of under-represented South Africans. His uncompromising mixed-media paintings narrate the extremes of our society which is rife with disparities.
Mabulu tells stories laced with symbolism of racism, poverty and the corruption of power in the hope of effecting radical societal change. The overt expressionism that frames Mabulu’s work further clarifies his intention and dedication to telling his raw and no holds barred truth. The inhabitants of the paintings play out violent and ghastly scenes alongside the appended phonetic textual elements that tend to sharpen the lashing dialect of the work.
The self-taught poet and painter has had solo exhibitions at the Chenshia Museum (2011), China, ‘Un-mute my Tongue’ at World Art, Cape Town and ‘Imvo Zabantsundu / The Native Opinion’ at Commune.1 (2013), Cape Town. Recent group exhibitions include ‘Perceptual Vigilance’ (2013), at the AVA, ‘Our Fathers’ (2012) at the AVA, Greatmore Studio Showcase (2012) and the Bag Factory in Johannesburg (2012). Mabulu has taken part in numerous residencies: Greatmore Art Studios (2011-2013), Chenshia Museum in China (2011), Bag Factory Thupelo workshop in Johannesburg. Mabulu has a studio in Greatmore Studios, Cape Town