ART & CELEBRATION

Art & Opulence at The Zeitz MOCAA Gala in Cape Town

A fashionable night at Africa's most prominent contemporary museum celebrates art from Africa and its diaspora

Sibling collective Dear Rebane, dressed in Gucci
Sibling collective Dear Rebane, dressed in Gucci

By AHL Team on 11.19.22 

Marked as a celebration of contemporary art from Africa and its diaspora, the Zeitz MOCAA (Museum of Contemporary African Art) in Cape Town, South Africa, revived its gala after a pandemic-induced hiatus. Co-hosted by British actress Gugulethu Sophia Mbatha-Raw MBE and the museum’s executive director and chief curator Koyo Kouoh, this year’s gala dinner and party was themed ‘Art & Opulence’ and was supported by the museum’s long-standing partner Gucci.

Artists Githan Coopoo, Talia Ramkilawan and Shakil Solanki
Artists Githan Coopoo, Talia Ramkilawan and Shakil Solanki
British actress and co-chair of the 2022 Zeitz MOCAA Gala, Gugulethu Sophia Mbatha-Raw, MBE. Photo by Jonx Pillemer and courtesy of Gucci
British actress and co-chair of the 2022 Zeitz MOCAA Gala, Gugulethu Sophia Mbatha-Raw, MBE. Photo by Jonx Pillemer and courtesy of Gucci

The gala is essential to the institution’s mission of promoting art education and community engagement as its proceeds yield approximately 30% of the dedicated budget. “We are extremely grateful to the patrons who attended the 2022 Zeitz MOCAA Gala Dinner and Party. Their contributions and support of the museum allow us to continue providing exhibitions of the highest standard and educational programs, many of which are free and open to the surrounding communities,” said Koyo Kouoh.

The Zeitz MOCAA gala returned after a pandemic-induced hiatus, visual artist and photographer Trevor Stuurman. Courtesy of Gucci
The Zeitz MOCAA gala returned after a pandemic-induced hiatus, visual artist and photographer Trevor Stuurman. Courtesy of Gucci
Headlining act DJ Zinhle kept guests entertained well into the night
Headlining act DJ Zinhle kept guests entertained well into the night

"We are extremely grateful to the patrons who attended the 2022 Zeitz MOCAA Gala Dinner and Party. Their contributions and support of the museum allow us to continue providing exhibitions of the highest standard and educational programs, many of which are free and open to the surrounding communities,”

— Koyo Kouoh

The event honored artist Julie Mehretu with tributes for Jorge and Darlene Pérez of Miami’s Pérez Art Museum (PAMM) and American art philanthropists Dr. Walter and Linda Evans. Emceed by South African TV personality and ex-Miss South Africa Jo-Ann Strauss, the attendees also got a chance to view the museum’s latest survey exhibition titled, ‘When We See Us: A Century of Black Figuration in Painting.’ The exhibition explores a hundred years of black self-representation and celebrates global black subjectivities and black consciousness from pan-African and pan-diasporic points of view. 

Fashion designer Rich Minsi. Photo by Jonx Pillemer and courtesy of Gucci
Fashion designer Rich Minsi. Photo by Jonx Pillemer and courtesy of Gucci
Koyo Kouoh, Zeitz MOCAA executive director and chief curator, and Touria El Glaoui, Founding Director of 1-54 Contemporary African Art Fair
Koyo Kouoh, Zeitz MOCAA executive director and chief curator, and Touria El Glaoui, Founding Director of 1-54 Contemporary African Art Fair
Guests on the dancefloor at the 2022 Zeitz MOCAA Gala Party
Guests on the dancefloor at the 2022 Zeitz MOCAA Gala Party

Focused on figurative painting, ‘When We See Us: A Century of Black Figuration in Painting’ features over 200 works of artists such as Njideka Akunyili Crosby, Zandile Tshabalala, Jacob Lawrence, Chéri Samba, and many more. The title references Ava DuVernay‘s crime mini-series ‘When They See Us’flipping ‘they’ to ‘we’ allow for the recentering of the conversation towards the self, as theorized by Professor Achille Mbembe

Organized around six themes: every day, joy and revelry, repose, sensuality, triumph and emancipation, and spirituality, the exhibition notably is one of the few extensive survey exhibitions around the black figurative painting — a genre that has been gaining global recognition. 

Frank Kilbourn and Bina Genovese, executive chairperson and managing executive of Struss & Co auction house respectively
Frank Kilbourn and Bina Genovese, executive chairperson and managing executive of Struss & Co auction house respectively
A Hotel Life managing editor Hamzeh Alfarahneh at the Zietz MOCCA gala dressed in Gucci. Photo by Jonx Pillemer and courtesy of Gucci
A Hotel Life managing editor Hamzeh Alfarahneh at the Zietz MOCCA gala dressed in Gucci. Photo by Jonx Pillemer and courtesy of Gucci

Our managing editor, Hamzeh Alfarahneh, was present at the gala and party, and you can see how his ‘Art and Opulence’ look came to life. He also shares, below, a few of his favorite works featured in the show — which opened to the public on Sunday, 20 November. 

 

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Art & Opulence at The Zeitz MOCAA Gala in Cape Town Cheri Samba, 'Revolution Obama', (2009) Acrylic and oil on canvas. Image courtesy of artist

Cheri Samba, 'Revolution Obama', (2009) Acrylic and oil on canvas. Image courtesy of artist

Art & Opulence at The Zeitz MOCAA Gala in Cape Town Gervais Emmanuel Ducasse, 'Son Autoportrait', (1975) Oil on board. Image courtesy of artist

Gervais Emmanuel Ducasse, 'Son Autoportrait', (1975) Oil on board. Image courtesy of artist

Art & Opulence at The Zeitz MOCAA Gala in Cape Town Thenjiwe Niki Nkosi, 'Ceremony,' (2020) Oil on canvas. Image courtesy of artist and Stevenson Gallery

Thenjiwe Niki Nkosi, 'Ceremony,' (2020) Oil on canvas. Image courtesy of artist and Stevenson Gallery

Art & Opulence at The Zeitz MOCAA Gala in Cape Town Ian Mwesiga, 'Man Standing by The Pool,' (2020) Oil on canvas. Image courtesy of artist and Mariane Ibrahim Gallery

Ian Mwesiga, 'Man Standing by The Pool,' (2020) Oil on canvas. Image courtesy of artist and Mariane Ibrahim Gallery

Art & Opulence at The Zeitz MOCAA Gala in Cape Town Joy Labinjo, 'Gisting in the Kitchen' (2018), oil, acrylic, and household paint on canvas. Image courtesy of artist and Tiwani Contemporary

Joy Labinjo, 'Gisting in the Kitchen' (2018), oil, acrylic, and household paint on canvas. Image courtesy of artist and Tiwani Contemporary

Art & Opulence at The Zeitz MOCAA Gala in Cape Town Cassi Namoda ‘To Live Long Is To See Much (Ritual Bathers III)’ (2020) Oil on canvas. Image courtesy of artist and Goodman Gallery

Cassi Namoda ‘To Live Long Is To See Much (Ritual Bathers III)’ (2020) Oil on canvas. Image courtesy of artist and Goodman Gallery

Art & Opulence at The Zeitz MOCAA Gala in Cape Town Cheri Samba ‘Une femme conduisant le monde’ (2017) Acrylic on canvas. Image courtesy of artist

Cheri Samba ‘Une femme conduisant le monde’ (2017) Acrylic on canvas. Image courtesy of artist

Art & Opulence at The Zeitz MOCAA Gala in Cape Town Sphephelo Mnguni ’Homage’ (2022) Oil on canvas. Images courtesy of artist

Sphephelo Mnguni ’Homage’ (2022) Oil on canvas. Images courtesy of artist

Art & Opulence at The Zeitz MOCAA Gala in Cape Town Moké ‘Kin oyé ou Couloir Madiokoko à Matonge’ (1983) Oil on canvas. Image courtesy of MAGNIN-A Gallery

Moké ‘Kin oyé ou Couloir Madiokoko à Matonge’ (1983) Oil on canvas. Image courtesy of MAGNIN-A Gallery

Art & Opulence at The Zeitz MOCAA Gala in Cape Town Zandile Tshabalala ‘Two reclining women’ (2020) Acrylic. Images courtesy of artist

Zandile Tshabalala ‘Two reclining women’ (2020) Acrylic. Images courtesy of artist

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