A man confronted with his history, 2016.
Not a Judge, not a Saint: A solo exhibition by: Layziehound Coka, was presented at Eclectica Contemporary
In a time of delicate and tenuous change, we cannot ignore our country’s longstanding history shaped by the influence of governing power, bureaucracy and justice. With the birth of democracy in 1994 and its growth from infancy to young adulthood, the footprints of struggling years before are further engraved into its core structure.
The Devil Made Me Do it, 2017.
Despite those whom have so valiantly upheld the spirit of unity and solidarity, we are still confronted with hypocrisy, ill bureaucratic practices, methods of exclusion or favouritism and a skewed idea of a fair judicial system.
It is within these crucial times of restructuring and rethinking that Eclectica Contemporary is proud to host a solo exhibition featuring South African Artist, Mpumelelo “Layziehound” Coka titled, Not a judge, not a saint.
She Makes Salvation Scream, 2017.
Who are we to judge and on what grounds are we as individuals judged, when neither of us is without sin? That is the question Layzihound Coka overtly confronts us with.
The South African artist who was born in Bilanyoni, Northen KwaZulu Natal, the foundation for his education and social upbringing, participated in a radical shift to art-making during 2003, leading him to quit engineering and participate in numerous group and solo exhibitions with a focus in print-making. It is within this shift that Layziehound embarked on his journey, renouncing strict principles and modes of thinking to explore grounds rooted in the premise of dismantling predetermined standards and boundaries.
Stooges Of The System, 2017.
Not a judge, not a saint, a “neither-nor” statement with a slightly deceiving sense of neutralism reveals the ease at which we dissociate ourselves from the judgements we make. He questions the power trajectories prevalent in society, be they religious and socio-political ideologies or those whom uphold them. His large, gestural body of work expresses a turbulent experience of conflict when tackling the so-called moral compass the artist and those of us alike are taught to live by.
The artworks address structures of leadership, division of class and a growing generational divide through the motif of the suit or suit-wearer. The fragmented images not only serve to obscure visual reception but also allude to the obscurities prevalent in a precarious socio-economic environment.
Layziehound reveals the incisions and scorched patches, the areas of imperfection as a result of continuous enforcement of idealized beliefs. So again we capitalize his question, “who are we to judge and on what grounds are we as individuals judged, when neither of us is without sin?”
– Kirsten Arendse