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South Africa

On Southern African Land Beneath African Skies

Notes on this work

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Three Studies After Zulu Girl
pen and acrylic on paper
21 x 30 cm

Zulu Girl pen and acrylic on paper
14.5 x 19.5 cm

In 1973 Tom Phillips was invited to exhibit at the 101 Gallery in Johannesburg, South Africa. At the time South Africa was subject to variety of international boycotts as a protest at the apartheid laws but Phillips believed that a cultural boycott wouldn't help "cutting people off from communication of culture (which must perforce speak liberty), seems very different from denying them them pleasure of sport." He made a preliminary visit gathering postcards, banknotes and ephemera and making studies of West African sculpture and slogan pictures. He made a decision to only show works relating to Africa. By the time the exhibition took place in 1974 he made a body of work about South Africa. and the ubiquitous and iniquitous signs of apartheid prevalent at the time.