Kemang Wa Lehulere
Cape Town (ZA), 1984
Nationality ZA
Studio view, 2014 Studio view, 2014

Kemang Wa Lehulere creates ambiguous events and environments in an attempt to understand both the past and the present. His practice seeks to revisit past moments in an attempt to understand the present. Via numerous media – drawing, sculpture, photography, performance and video – Wa Lehulere addresses the intersections of personal narrative and collective history, its disintegration and partial amnesia.
Death is a recurrent theme, be it through chance encounters with bones while (literally) digging into history or through his recent research project on the life of a South African dissident who, torn by alienation, fell to his death about 50 years ago.


BA Fine Art at University of Witwatersrand (Wits University) Johannesburg, ZA
Two Year Diploma Visual Arts, Community Arts Project (CAP) and Arts, Media Access Centre (AMAC), Cape Town, ZA
Scriptwriting and Introduction to Film and Television, Community Video Education Trust (CVET), Cape Town, ZA

Selected Residencies
Candidate for the Bellagio Creative Artist Fellowship, Rockefeller Foundation
Rijksakademie van beeldende kunsten, Amsterdam, NL
The New Museum for Contemporary Art, New York (NY), US
Swiss Arts Council Residency, PROGR, Bern, CH
Ampersand Foundation, New York (NY), US
Zentrum Paul Klee, Berne, CH

Selected Fellowships
Mellon Mays Undergraduate Fellowship for scholarly research at Bowdoin College, Brunswick, US

Awards and Grants
Recipient of the Tollman Award for the Visual Arts
Nominated for the 1st Premio Cittadellarte - Fondazione Zegna 2011 Prize
Recipient of the MTN New Contemporaries Award 2010
Recipient of the Spier Contemporary 2007 Award, Stellenbosch, CH

Selected Solo Exhibitions
Sleep is for the Gifted, Lombard Freid Gallery, New York (NY), US
Thirty Minutes of Amnesia: Act 1, Goethe Institute, Johannesburg, ZA
Ubontsi: Sharp sharp!, AVA, Association of Visual Arts, Cape Town, ZA

Selected Group Exhibitions
My Joburg, la maison rouge, Paris, FR
Imaginary Fact, South African Pavilion, The 55th Venice Biennale, IT
Center for Historical Reenactments: After-After Tears, The New Museum for Contemporary Art, New York (NY), US
Home WHERE?, Lombard Freid Projects, New York (NY), US
The Ungovernables, New Museum, New York (NY), US
Air de Lyon, Fundacion Proa, Buenos Aires, AR
11th Biennale de Lyon - A terrible Beauty is Born, Museum of Contemporary Art, Lyon, FR
Xenoglossia: A research project, Centre for Historical Reenactments, Johannesburg, ZA
Agter die Berge, 7 Hours, Berlin, DE
Xenoglossia: A research project, Center for Historical Reenactments, Johannesburg, ZA
MTN New Contemporaries Award 2010, KZNSA Gallery, Durban, ZA
When Your Lips are my Ears our Bodies become Radios, Kunsthalle Bern and Zentrum Paul Klee, Bern, CH
PASS-AGES: References & Footnotes, Old Pass-Law Office, Johannesburg, ZA
US, South African National Gallery, Cape Town, ZA, Gugulective
1 hour of VIDEOart, Galerie Rupert Walser, Munich, DE
Koma Ulwaluko: Visaul Negotiations, Polokwane Art Museum, Polokwane, ZA
Ityala aliboli / Debt don’t rot, Goodman Gallery project space, Johannesburg, ZA, Gugulective
PRIVATE VIEWING – South African Video Art, D21 Art Space, Leipzig, DE
Rotterdam International Film Festival (One Minute Foundation), Rotterdam, NL
X Homes (Public Art Performances), Johannesburg, ZA
Johannesburg Art Fair Fringe, various venues in Johannesburg, ZA
Johannesburg Art Fair, ZA+ Centre for Contemporary Art, Lagos, NG
Dada South?, South African National Gallery, Cape Town, ZA, participated in personal capacity + Gugulective
Bring me a leaf of grass from the edge of the image, Dioptic gallery, Weinheim, DE
Bring me a leaf of grass from the edge of the image - Chapter II, Atelierfrankfurt Studios, Frankfurt, DE
Rites of Passage/Rites of Fealty, Bag Factory Artists’ Studios, Johannesburg, ZA
Identity – An imagined State, Centre for Contemporary Art Lagos, Lagos, NG
US, Johannesburg Art Gallery (JAG), Johannesburg, ZA
US Nothing Ever Changes, KKNK, Oudtschoorn, ZA
Arte inVisible, ARCO 09, Madrid, ES
The Road to Nieu Bethesda, Site Specific Project/Interventions, Nieu Bethesda, ZA
Performing South Africa, Hebbel Am Ufer Theatre, Berlin, DE
Scratching the Surface Vol 1, AVA, Cape Town, ZA
World One Minutes, Today Art Museum, Beijing, CN
Spier Contemporary 07, Johannesburg Art Gallery, Johannesburg, ZA
Eskaleni: Spatial Practices, Africa Cultural Centre, Johannesburg, ZA
Works on Paper, Blank Projects, Cape Town, ZA
Spier Contemporary 07, Spier Estate, Cape Town, ZA
A Legacy of Men, Johannesburg Art Gallery (JAG), Johannesburg, ZA
Titled/Untitled, Kwa Mlami and Blank Projects, Gugulethu and Cape Town, ZA
Akuchanywa Apha, Kwa Mlamli, Gugulective, Gugulethu, ZA
Akuchanywa, Cape 07 fringe, Gugulective, Kwa Mlamli, Gugulethu, ZA

Artist Publications
PASS-AGES references & footnotes, Center for Historical Reenactments, Johannesburg, ZA, Conversation with Gabi Ngcobo
Remembering Future Africa, Chinua Achebe Centre for African Writers and Artists
Annondale-on-Hudson, USA, Short story
Recess: Street Credit, Johannesburg, ZA, Editor and a short story contribution
Arte InVisible, ARCO 09, Madrid, ES, Fiction
KAP, Basel, CH, Short story contribution + Franzi Modarin
Amkenah, Alexandria, EG, Short story
Khanya: a journal for activists, ZA, Essay

Bomi Odufunade, “The Artist: Kemang Wa Lehulere”, Arise Live, (May 1)
“I’m continually under construction, trying to understand my practice along with the world around me…”, Contemporary And, (April)
Christian Rattemeyer, Vitamin D2: New Perspectives in Drawing. Phaidon
Some Deleted Scenes Too, published by Stevenson Gallery, (September)
Christina Kennedy, "Kemang Wa Lehulere's Some Deleted Scenes Too", Business Day, (September 6)
Kulani Nkuina, "Sense and Sensibility", The Citizen, (August 22)
Robyn Sassen, "He Leaves No Trace", The New York Times Sunday Edition, (December 4)
Alexandra Dodd, "The New Wave", Wanted Magazine, (November)
Kim Gurney, "Doing It His Way", Destiny Magazine, (January/February)