How does the garden find its way inside the home and the body? This discussion will take a closer look at the garden theme within the Home Is Where The Art Is: Art Is Where The Home Is exhibition. Through a conversation between artists and ecologists the artistic, historical, and cultural significance of the garden will be explored. The symbolism of the garden will be used to unpack issues around mythology, land, urbanism, food, migrations, taxonomies, and indigenous knowledge systems. What narratives of history, biodiversity and botany can we uncover? How is a garden possibly a site of memory, healing, and nourishment? Using the artworks of the exhibition as provocations to address these issues, this discussion will foster dialogue between the exhibition and the local environment.
Programme type: Panel discussion
Moderator: Sakhi Gcina
Panelists: Zayaan Khan, Shakil Solanki
Saturday, 20 March 2021
11am – 12pm
Zeitz MOCAA, Scheryn Arena
To RSVP for this event, please email us here with the subject line: Home Is Where The Art Is: The Garden
Please note that this event is free of charge with museum admission or museum membership. Kids under 18 visit free. To purchase a membership, visit our become a member page. Alternatively, book your daily admissions ticket here.
Zayaan Khan is a local cultural practitioner, food activist and artist based in Cape Town, focusing on the nuanced relationships between the ecological and urban lives that live in our city. Khan studied Landscape Design and Horticulture, focusing on green roof systems and their practicality to increase biodiversity as well as food security within the so-called limited soils of the city. Her career has its basis working in and with organisations working in land reform, agrarian transformation, and food justice, understanding the socio-political contexts of present-day crises and working towards unhinging our dependency on neoliberalism, with indigenous food reclamation as praxis. She is currently completing a PhD in the Environmental Humanities South at the University of Cape Town, an interdisciplinary research cluster, focused on seed: “From seed-as-object to seed-as-relation.” Khan works as an artist, consultant, food transformer, ceramicist, writer and researcher working from a socio-political platform to understand truer meanings of transformation and expressing solutions through the ways in which we consume, from food to medicine, art, cosmetic or household consumables. She is also building the Seed Biblioteek, a seed library highlighting the story of seeds.
Shakil Solanki was born in Cape Town, South Africa. He recently completed his undergraduate degree at the Michaelis School of Fine Art and is currently based in Cape Town, practicing as an artist. Solanki majored in the medium of printmaking during his third and fourth years of study. On completion of his degree in 2019, he was awarded the Simon Gerson Award in recognition of outstanding practical work, and the Katrine Harries Print Cabinet Award, for excellent achievement in the printmaking medium. Since 2018, he has taken part in over fifteen group shows, along with several silk screen-printing jobs, and a residency at the South Atlantic Press in 2020. Solanki interrogates the dynamics of intimacy, using the space of a secret garden to explore dualities of tenderness, desire, and violence. His experiences as a queer brown man remain central to his practice, with classical Eastern art standing as a prominent source of inspiration. This vernacular is repurposed, encompassing homoerotic dialogues to evoke lush, dreamlike lands, which remain both romantic and discomforting at once. The trope of a secret garden is used as a liminal space, where contrasting emotions of trauma and longing exist hand-in-hand with moments of stillness, using the theme of intimacy as a point of convergence to explore its many dynamics.
Sakhi Gcina was born and raised in Queenstown, South Africa. Currently, he is a Project Content Coordinator at Zeitz Museum of Contemporary Art Africa (Cape Town, South Africa). Gcina works within the context of a multidisciplinary space for experimental curatorial practice and research which explores under-represented topics and social issues within a contemporary art museum. He has curated Zanele Muholi Faces and Phases and Somnyama Ngonyama/Hail the Dark Lioness; LGBTQI+ Banele Khoza; and Owanto: One Thousand Voices among other projects at the museum.
Gcina obtained a Bachelor of Arts (BA) in Film and Media Production at the University of Cape Town (UCT) along with majors in English Literature and Philosophy. He studied for a Bachelor of Arts (Honours) Degree in Curatorship through the Mellon Foundation scholarship at the Centre for Curating the Archive at the UCT Michaelis School of Fine Art. While a student he was part of the South African Arts Critics Association mentorship programme and the Highway Africa Future Journalist’s programme contributing to various publications.