Visual Art / Atherstone Gallery

The premise of the land/lines cross-gallery exhibition is to emphasise the depth of the historical, geographical, cultural and spiritual significance of the Eastern Cape by placing its very landscape as the backdrop for contemporary reflexive engagement.


The Eastern Cape is a uniquely rich socio-historical site of indescribable cultural conflict, migration, dispossession and resistance. It is a living land that has breathed life into rituals and bled for beliefs. It is a land thrashed by a myriad of physical, metaphorical and spiritual ‘lines’ separating people from the land, oppression from resistance, myths from truths, Believers from Unbelievers and histories from futures.


Gqeberha’s Bird Street Gallery (housed in a former colonial residence built in 1851) and Makhanda’s 1820 Settlers’ Monument will be the charged sites that act as nodes through which the artists’ ideas are communicated and visualised. An artwork by each artist will exist in each of the two colonial sites-turned-galleries so as to encourage dialogue between the two spaces. The landscape between and surrounding the two sites, in all its overwhelming abundance, holds the weight of its context and is an active contributor to the ethos of the exhibition as viewers move from one gallery to the other.


Book to attend a hosted walkabout with the curators.

22 June: Hosted by Jonathan van der Walt and Uthando Baduza

29 June: Hosted by Jonathan van der Walt

Artist Biography

Jonathan van der Walt is a visual artist and curator based in Gqeberha, South Africa. In 2013 he received his degree in Fine Art (cum laude) at Nelson Mandela University and went on to receive his MA in 2017. Currently, Jonathan is an Associate Lecturer in the Department of Visual Arts at Nelson Mandela University, and the gallery manager & curator of the Department’s Bird Street Gallery, where he has led the setup of approximately sixty exhibitions. He has experience as a practising artist within the discipline of sculpture, with a passionate interest in the combination of 3D digital technologies in conjunction with traditional sculpting methods. 


He was the Artist-in-Residence at the William Humphreys Art Gallery in Kimberley for 2024, exhibiting his second solo exhibition “from the Woods to the Soil '' at the culmination of the residency in March/April 2024. As a practising artist, he has exhibited in numerous group exhibitions nationally and internationally. He has been selected as a national finalist in the L’Atelier competition on 3 occasions, and the Sasol New Signatures competition on 6 occasions as well as a finalist in the PPC Imaginarium 2019. He participated in the Luciano Benneton Small Canvas project in 2014-15, exhibiting in Venice, Rome and New York, as part of the South Africa Collection. In 2021-22, he was involved in the Through Our Eyes exchange partnership, exhibiting at The Nelson Mandela Metropolitan Art Museum and The Ritz Art Museum in Jacksonville, Florida, and was one of two artists selected to travel to the USA as part of this exchange. 


Uthando Baduza holds a Bachelor of Arts (Political Studies) (UWC), a Post-Graduate Diploma in Heritage and Museum Studies (joint programme of the UCT and UWC with the Robben Island Museum) and a MA in Public and Visual History (cum laude) at UWC and is now pursuing a PhD (Developmental Studies) with a focus on Arts Education at the University of Pretoria. He has worked for the District Six Museum as an Assistant Exhibition Curator, Human Sciences Research Council and Press as an Arts and Culture Researcher and Commissioning Editor respectively. He was also the FET Researcher at the CIPSET at the NMU and a Research Fellow at the Department of Higher Education and Training (Policy and Development Support). He has consulted for various government departments and organisations in the areas of arts, culture, heritage, policy, higher education and publishing. 


He has served on various bodies and Ministerial Task Teams for education and arts, culture and heritage policy. He was a Mail and Guardian Top 200 Young South Africans (2016) for Arts and Culture. He has curated and co-curated several exhibitions for various institutions and has served on various adjudication panels for several juried exhibitions locally and abroad. He most recently completed the Courant Du Monde Programme (Itinérarie Culture) focusing on the organisation of temporary exhibitions and the circulation of cultural goods in African Institutions run by the French Ministry of Culture in Paris. He was most recently the Chief Curator for the Red Location Art Gallery at the Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality.  He is now the Curator: Art Exhibition & Galleries at the University of Pretoria Museum.


Curated by Jonathan van der Walt and Uthando Baduza

Presented by the Department of Visual Arts in the Faculty of Humanities, Nelson Mandela University, in collaboration with the University of Pretoria Museums, Art Exhibitions and Galleries and the National Arts Festival.

  • Daily entry to the exhibitions is free. The scheduled walkabouts have a minimal cost and booking is essential.
  • Atherstone Gallery
    June 22, 2024 15:30 - 16:30
  • Atherstone Gallery
    June 29, 2024 14:00 - 15:00