Creative Work

November 11, 2020


Thokozani Mthiyane

Silence is that moment when the echoes of one’s thoughts, or is it the prayer moment, in modern parlance? Is it the meditative moment humanity has been waiting for, the mystery of a virus that has us all pondering on our mortality not as individuals but as a humanity across borders – across time let alone histories and persuasions either material or spiritual? Here we are at dawn of the 21st century, having to wear masks to protect the self and fellow humans from death so quiet and invisible yet in every pulse like the Hiroshima quake – but that was human designed and this is subject to theories – yet we live and breathe through it with defiance or faith – either the way the mask has its aesthetics and rituals, and practically we are the theatre. Shakespeare once wrote, the world is a stage, and the mask we wear today is the same we had for lives and rituals from time immemorial just now it for different reasons.

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Thokozani Mthiyane

About Thokozani Mthiyane

Thokozani Mthiyane is a Johannesburg based artist represented by Art Eye Gallery. Mthiyane grew up in Cleremont Township near Durban, where after leaving school he would pass time in the studios of artists Sfiso KaMkame and Thami Jali, watching them work. He has been largely influenced by his time spent under the tutelage of artists Sfiso KaMkame and Thami Jali. Mthiyane has experience in children’s theatre with the Madcap’s Educational Theatre Company, after which he had his first solo exhibition at the Flat Gallery in Durban. Mthiyane is a multidisciplinary artist, who speaks with as much confidence about his work as an expressionist painter as he does about his time as a trilingual poet in France and as a dancer touring Holland with the Inzalo dance company. He has exhibited at the Centre for humanities research, and has exhibited at African noise foundation. In 2017 he had a solo show with Art Eye Gallery, show titled “Soul songs: The shape of my head.” He has also exhibited with Undiscovered Canvas, In Cannes. He developed his signature act of performing French poetry translated into Zulu in Cave Poésie in Toulouse, Southern France. He returned to France in 2001 and again in 2004 to perform the poems of Jacques Prévert in the small town of Heroville near Normandy. Mthiyane’s artistic flare stems from his creative combination of painting and poetry. He has exhibited for Alliance Françoise and Resolution Gallery in Johannesburg. In 2015 he had a solo exhibition titled “Whetin dey happen Lagos/ Jozi” at Mzansi Gallery Johannesburg South Africa. In 2016 his artwork was published in The Imbali Artbooks: Adventuring into art, which is part of a syllabus. Mthiyane’s work is a spontaneous culmination of happenings which are lead purely by the artists feeling toward his canvas. His multicultural aesthetic is drawn from his desire for travel and connection to countries all over the world. This consumption and cultivation of other cultural influences and practices is somehow the place on which the works elaboration exists. Mthiyane is represented by the Art Eye Gallery and to see more of his work or to purchase it, please go to the gallery’s website: