AvP is an arts collaborative comprising of visual artists Sharlene Khan and Nono Motlhoki, writer and editor Fouad Asfour and photographer Mujahid Safodien. The collaborative meets over lunches and suppers, tea and drinks to discuss their artworks, everyday politics and their lived experiences. They have write and play together to think through creativities, to collaborate on and find intersecting nodes in each other’s modes of working. The collective strongly believe in owning and generating our own knowledges and ways of being. Over 2021-2022, the AvP has been invited on a mentorship residency to the Bag Factory Artist’s Studios. They look forward to bringing their different skills and knowledge bases to interact with the vibrant Bag Factory artist community.
Sharlene Khan bio
Sharlene Khan is a South African visual artist whose multi-media works focus on the socio-political realities of a post-apartheid society and the intersectionality of race-gender-class. She has exhibited in the UK, Italy, France, Germany, South Africa, India, South Korea, Greece and has participated in various international conferences. Her writings on contemporary visual arts appears in journals, books, art catalogues and magazines including Art South Africa, Artthrob, Springerin, Manifesta, Contemporary-And, The Conversation Africa, Imbizo: International Journal of African Literary and African Studies, Agenda and The Palgrave Handbook of Race and the Arts in Education. She was a recipient of the Rockefeller Bellagio Visual Arts residency (2009), the Canon Collins/Commonwealth Scholarship (2011), the African Humanities Post-doctoral Fellowship (2017), the National Institute for Humanities and Social Sciences Award for Visual Arts (2018) and was runner-up winner in the Videokunst Preis Bremen Video Art Award (2015). She has published three books on her artwork: What I look like, What I feel like (2009), I Make Art (2017) and When the moon waxes red: Negotiating Subjective Terrain as an ‘Inside-Outsider’, an ‘Outside-Insider’… (2019). She is co-convenor of the annual African Feminisms (Afems) Conference; runs the Art on our Mind Research Project; the bi-weekly Black Feminist Killjoy Reading Group and the Decolonial AestheSis Creative Lab. She holds a PhD (Arts) from Goldsmiths, University of London and is currently Associate Professor at the Department of Fine Arts, Wits University, Johannesburg.
Nono Motlhoki bio
Motlhoki (b. 1998 in Mabopane, Pretoria) has currently completed her BA Honours in Fine Art at the University of the Witwatersrand, where she graduated with five distinctions. Her studio practice is currently based in Johannesburg, where she uses Video and Printmaking as tools to investigate the textures of intimacies and violences that are implicated in romantic love. Nuanced ideas of inheritance, consumption, texture, and materiality are notable qualities in her work. Her practice is characterised by a valorisation, problematisation and curiosity towards black love, as well as abstract narrative and relationalities of space. She defines her practice as a decolonial and sociological enquiry into love. Currently, Motlhoki is engaged in materialising abstract, intangible and fragile forms of love, into tangible gestures. She is interested in how the texture of the feeling is woven into specific acts. The artist’s work has appeared widely, notable group and collaborative exhibitions include Gallery Momo, Johannesburg –South Africa (2017); Textile Visions, Turbine Art Fair (2020); The Nonrepresentational, Stevenson Gallery (2020); Now-Now, Gallery114 (2020); Now Bite The Hand That Feeds You, Boda Boda Lounge International Video Festival (2020); NeWWork, The Point of Order (2020); Home For the Holidays, Danger Gevaar Ingozi (2021); City SALTS: Boda Boda Lounge, SALTS (2021); Re/Projections: Video, Film, and Performance for the Rotunda, Guggenheim (2021); Unusual Suspects, African Artist’s Foundation – Lagos (2021); and 40 Under 40, WhatIfTheWorld Gallery (2021). Notable awards and invitations include Thami Mnyele Fine Arts Awards Lizamore Prize (2021); Anya Millman Scholarship for outstanding practical work in Fine Arts (2020); Giovanna Millner Scholarship for distinguished postgraduate and undergraduate work in Fine Arts and History of Art (2020); Design Indaba Top 50 Emerging Creatives (2020); Liepzig International Art Programme Residency (2021); African Feminisms Conference (2021); Thabo Mbeki Women’s Day Foundation (2019); On the Utility of Hands and Holding: A Discussion on Love, Work and Space at KZNSA Gallery (2020), where she was invited to speak about her video practice and love.
Mujahid Safodien is a visual storyteller. He studied Graphic Design and Fine Art at the Cape Town Technical College. In 1994, he started as a trainee writer and photographer for South Newspaper, worked as Senior Photographer at the Star newspaper and freelanced for news agencies and publications, among others the Cape Times, Cape Argus, Muslim News, Associated Press, AFP, Reuters, iAfrica, United Nations, Greenpeace, New Frame, Daily Maverick. His work is available on Getty Images and Agence France-Presse Art Photo Limited. Exhibitions include “Alexandra Township” at Graphiti in Cape Town (2002) and “New Work” at Wits Art Museum (2020). He co-directed the 2013 documentary Jeppe on a Friday and currently studies towards an MA at Wits School of the Arts.
Fouad Asfour is a writer and researcher working in collaborative frameworks of publications, exhibitions, performance and research projects. He has contributed to numerous contemporary art and research projects and has published widely, holds an MA in Linguistics from Vienna University, Austria, and an MA in Creative Writing from Rhodes University, Makhanda, South Africa. He founded Pole Pole Press publishing project in 2011, and is part of art research projects Art on our Mind and African Feminisms Conferences (Afems). In 2008, he received the Igor Zabel Award for Culture and Theory working grant.