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Nicholas Hlobo
Ivulandlela, 2018
Ribbon and leather on canvas
Work: 120 x 180 x 20 cm

Working with various found objects and materials — leather, rubber, bronze, ribbons, copper and brass —Nicholas Hlobo considers his artistic practice to be a kind of autobiography through which he articulates a sense of self. Through an obscured grammar within a language of abstraction, Hlobo explores his psychological, emotional and spiritual journey. “My work is about my journey, how I relate to myself and to the outside world. I’m very curious about the invisible, intangible and incomprehensible aspects of that journey and there is always a slipperiness to the process of figuring it out”, says Hlobo. Hlobo uses materials that have resonance to his personal memories, he explains; “Materials are found and used as a way to add more layers to the narrative. And how they are intervened with forms a part of becoming a language that tells the story. Found objects have their own stories with various patinas depending on where they come from.” Ivulandlela which can be translated as “the pioneer” is about finding a path for others to follow. It is a way of paying tribute to those who come before and carve a path for others to follow.