Each edition of Révélations unveils an exceptional work showcased at the event as the emblem of its visual identity. Reflecting both the creator’s style and the biennial’s values, this piece embodies the notions of mastery of one’s craft, transformation of high-quality materials, and the universality of craftsmanship.
In keeping with the theme of this 5th edition, which puts Africa in the spotlight, Révélations has chosen a brightly coloured work by South African ceramicist Zizipho Poswa, to symbolise the vitality of fine craft workers and international contemporary creation.
Magodi – Abongile, the Signature Piece of Révélations 2021
Abongile Abongile is a piece from the Magodi series, monumental ceramic sculptures through which Zizipho Poswa celebrates the majesty and heritage of traditional African hairstyles (“Magodi” in the Xhosa language).
These handmade pieces use an intricate technique evoking ancestral mastery of woven, braided and threaded hair. Each work bears a traditional Xhosa name, in homage to women who have played an influential role in the artist’s life.
Cape Town-based ceramic artist Zizipho Poswa takes inspiration from her life as a Xhosa woman and artist living in modern-day South Africa to create monumental pieces.
Raised in the Eastern Cape (a bastion of Xhosa culture), her artistic vocation was encouraged by her mother, a teacher. Zizipho Poswa studied surface design, majoring in textiles, at Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University of Technology (NMMU), and uses the knowledge she acquired there in her modelling work.
Her internationally renowned ceramics have found their way into significant private collections and been exhibited at major events and fairs, including LACMA (Los Angeles), 1stdibs Gallery (Manhattan), Design Miami, PAD London and Art + Design (New York).
She has also received the prestigious Fellow Award from Ceramic South Africa.
Alongside South African ceramicist Andile Dyalvane, she co-founded Imiso Ceramics, which has won worldwide acclaim for its handmade tableware.