Intaka Yakha Ngoboya Benye -
A Bird Builds Its Nest With Another Bird’s Feathers
Julia Grey is a South African artist working predominantly in the medium of collage and mixed media installation. Her book Cape Town, an illustrated poem (Struik Publishing. 2005) is a full colour art journal; part travelogue and part personal manifesto involving collage, illustrations and poetry. The book is a work of self-discovery; documenting the impressions, visuals, questions and growing pains of a young person coming of age during the South African transition.
Following on from Cape Town, an illustrated poem, Julia continues to use art as a vehicle to contain emotional processing. Where that processing enters the realm of the political, Julia is interested specifically in ‘the breakdown of privilege’ as a personal narrative and requisite process for building bridges on a social level.
In Intaka yakha ngoboya benye, Julia weaves imagery suggesting the relationship between striking mineworkers in South Africa and the members of a middle/upper class who live in an economy built on the back(s) of colonialism. The work hints at the neo-colonialism that still exists in capital flight, massive income inequality and foreign control over African resources. More importantly in this instance, it highlights the remnants of imperial injustice that still exist in conversation and in personal psychology.
Intaka yakha ngoboya benye
mixed media installation including Miner's Shot Sown (2014) Documentary detailing events leading up to the Marikana massacre, directed by Rehad Desai. Used with kind permission