Penny Siopis (RSA)

Penny Siopis was born in 1953 in Vryburg in the Northern Cape Province. She studied Fine Arts at Rhodes University and Portsmouth Polytechnic before taking up a lecturing position at the Natal Technikon in Durban. In 1984, she moved to Johannesburg and began lecturing in the Department of Fine Arts at the Witwatersrand University (Wits). Currently she is Honorary Professor at The Michaelis School of Fine Art (University of Cape Town, South Africa) and is represented in South Africa by Stevenson Gallery.

Siopis has exhibited locally and internationally since 1975, and has won a variety of awards including the Volkskas Atellier Award, and the Vita Art Now award. Her work is well represented in South African and international collections.

In the eighties, Siopis became well known for her baroque banquet paintings (especially Melancholia) and history paintings. She used random objects in her work, which commented on colonialism, gender, and discriminatory practices of all kinds.

In the 1990’s, Siopis extended her range to media to include monumental installations, film and video. The main focus of Siopis’ works is often visualised in existing objects, as she states: “Long have I been intrigued with the idea of an object as narrator. As the saying goes, “If walls (chairs, lamps, cutlery, or bowls) could talk, what tales they would tell?”

In the Pinky Pinky series of hand printed lithographs Penny Siopis explores the psychological and mythical terrain of South African teenage girls. Pinky Pinky is a ”mythical” figure that makes himself known to pre-pubescent and pubescent girls in the largely Black townships and schools of South Africa. He tends to be an urban creature but has put in an appearance in rural areas.

Pinky Pinky haunts toilets, mostly public toilets, and places where teenage girls find themselves alone. He molests girls and has been accused of rape. Pinky Pinky is a very real figure for many girls and embodies the fears and anxieties that girl’s face as their bodies develop and their social standing changes. He can also be seen as a figure that has grown out of the neurosis that can develop in a society that experiences such change and tension as is found in Southern Africa. It is also a society in which rape and the abuse of women and children is extremely high.

 

 

 

 

 

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Ronaldo

Year: 2002

Type: Six Colour Lithograph

Size: 38×50.5cm

Edition Size: 40

POA

Umtatarama

Year: 1999

Type: Three Colour Lithograph

Size: 38×38.5cm x

Edition Size: 40

POA

Model Prisoners

Year: 2002

Type: Six Colour Lithograph

Size: 38×50.5cm x

Edition Size: 40

POA


 

Zimbabwe Farmer

Year: 2002

Type: Six Colour Lithograph

Size: 38×50.5cm x

Edition Size: 40

POA


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