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Trying to impress

Banele Khoza

1994 - present

Trying to impress

2017
Acrylic on canvas
112 x 92 cm
On long-term loan from the Zeitz Collection.

 

There is a shift in Khoza’s style evident in this painting. The clearly defined outline of the central figure – a male body sketched in solid pencil marks immersed in splotches of deep colour, from soft pastels of blue and pink to bright red, purple and a yellowish green.

The figure posed in a style popular in men’s fashion advertising campaigns appears to be bored and disinterested, but also exudes a seductive charm. Yet, there seems to be a more abstract figure at the bottom of the frame that competes for the viewer’s attention.

Does this self-conscious objectification of male beauty refer to a need for an individual to be seen and adored?

Sakhisizwe Gcina, AKO Foundation Assistant Curator of Special Projects, Curatorial Lab.

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