Selected Works

Sue Williamson and Siyah Ndawela Mgoduka

That particular morning, 2019 2-channel video installation 28 minutes 33 seconds

Sue Williamson

The Last Supper, Manley Villa (Portfolio of 12 images), 1981 and 2008 Individual prints on archival cotton paper Paper size: 500 x 675mm

Sue Williamson

It's a pleasure to meet you, 2016 2-channel video installation with stereo audio 24 min 40 sec

Sue Williamson

A Few South Africans - Virgina Mngoma, 1984 Photo etching and screenprint collage Work: 100 x 70 cm

Sue Williamson

A Tale of Two Cradocks, 1994 Archival pigment ink prints on cotton rag paper, wood, extruded acetate, brass hinges Work: 43 x 25 x 500 cm

Sue Williamson

Better Lives: Richard Belalufu, 2003 Pigment inks on cotton rag paper 144 x 122cm

Sue Williamson

Truth Games: Joyce Seipei - as a mother - Winnie Madikizela-Mandela, 1998 Laminated colour laser prints, wood, metal, plastic, perspex Work: 84 x 121 x 6 cm

Sue Williamson

Other Voices: It's a bit suspicious if you have too much money, Berlin. (photo: Abrie Fourie), 2010 Archival ink on Hahnemuhle Work: 360 x 112 cm

Sue Williamson

For 30 Years Next to His Heart, 1990 Colour laser prints in artist frames Work: 196 x 262 cm

Sue Williamson

Messages from the Atlantic Passage, 2017 Engraved bottles, fishing nets, chain, steel shackles, water pumps and tanks Dimensions variable

Sue Williamson

Postcards from Africa: Afrique Occidentale - Senegal - Saint Louis. Un Coin de Guet N’Dar, 2019 Ink on Yupo synthetic archival paper, hand engraved museum glass

Sue Williamson

Messages from the Moat, 1997 Glass bottles, fishing net, tank, water, recirculating pump, audio track played through speakers Variable Dimensions

Sue Williamson

All Our Mothers: Amina Cachalia, Fordsburg, 1984 Archival ink on archival paper Image: 58 x 39cm

Sue Williamson

There's something I must tell you, 2013 Six screen video installation

Sue Williamson

All Our Mothers: Caroline Motsoaledi, Soweto , 2012 Archival ink on archival paper Image: 58 x 39cm


Sue Williamson (b. 1941, Lichfield, UK) emigrated with her family to South Africa in 1948. Trained as a printmaker, Williamson also works in installation, photography and video. In the 1970s, she started to make work which addressed social change during apartheid and by the 1980s Williamson was well known for her series of portraits of women involved in the country’s political struggle. A Few South Africans is one such a series where she celebrates women who had played roles in the fight for freedom.

Referring to her practice, Williamson states: “You become aware of the audience to whom you speak. In that sense, you think backwards: what you have to say, whom you say it to, and how it will reach the audience. Having to consider your work through the eyes of somebody who knows nothing about you as an artist and what you are doing is a useful exercise.” Williamson has managed to avoid the rut of being caught in an apartheid-era aesthetic, “I am never particularly interested in doing what I did the last time. I take one thing and work it out a number of ways.”

In 2018, Williamson was Goodman Gallery’s featured artist at the FNB Joburg Art Fair, where she exhibited her work Messages from the Atlantic Passage, a large-scale installation of shackled, suspended glass bottles engraved with profiles of 19th-century victims of slavery. This installation was also exhibited that year at Art Basel in Switzerland and at the Kochi-Muziris Biennale in India.

Williamson’s works feature in numerous public collections across the globe, including those at the Museum of Modern Art, New York, USA, Tate Modern, London, UK, Victoria & Albert Museum, London, UK, National Museum of African Art, Smithsonian Institution, Washington D.C., USA, Wifredo Lam Centre, Havana, Cuba, Iziko South African National Gallery, Cape Town, South Africa, and Johannesburg Art Gallery, South Africa.

Williamson has received various awards and fellowships such as the Bellagio Creative Arts Fellowship 2011, Italy, Rockefeller Foundation, the Visual Artist Research Award Fellowship 2007, Smithsonian Institution, Washington D.C., USA and the Lucas Artists Residency Fellowship 2005, Montalvo Art Center, California, USA.

Sue Williamson lives and works in Cape Town, South Africa.


I've grown roses in this gard...

03 October - 30 October 2019

Sue Williamson / That particu...

25 July - 31 August 2019

South South / Between Land an...

29 November - 16 January 2019

New Revolutions: Goodman Gall...

04 June - 23 July 2016


Shirin Neshat, Carrie Mae Wee...

Posted 05 March 2020

Sue Williamson on 2020 Casabl...

Posted 07 November 2019

Sue Williamson on group exhib...

Posted 26 August 2019

Work by Sue Williamson on vie...

Posted 04 May 2019


Sue Williamson / Artthrob / S...

Sue Williamson / House & Leis...

Sue Williamson / IOL / Septem...

Sue Williamson / Mail and Gua...