Throwing Shapes | Photography Group Show

Sat, June 9, 2018 to Sat, June 30, 2018

SMITH proudly presents the 11 artist-strong Throwing Shapes, a group show celebrating daring, experimental contemporary photography that challenges traditional notions of form.

The selected protagonists share a common disdain for the confines of traditional photographic expression and will present work that probes at new ways of making and seeing photographs.

Vanessa Cowling, Nicole Fraser, Nico Krijno, Garth Meyer, Abdus Salaam, Matt Slater, Kyu Sang Lee, Ané Strydom, Johno Mellish, Alex Oelofse and Bert Pauw variously celebrate, parody, subvert or otherwise toy with the meaning and power of form.

Several of the chosen artists are less concerned with the taking of photographs as they are with manufacturing the image they capture. In those instances where a photograph is presented unedited or unmanipulated, there is an experimental spirit that speaks to supposedly loftier art forms.

Jana Terblanche, Curator at SMITH, says: “This show stemmed from wanting to view photography in the context of painting. The work moves away from the burden of “capturing a moment” and takes on some of the formal qualities more often associated with paintings and sculptures.”

Throwing Shapes invites viewers to consider the broader involvement of photographers in crafting the images they capture and present.

Krijno plays with the idea of the constructed image as he fabricates sculptural forms and then manipulates the resulting photographs to conjure an entirely new reality. In Krijno’s work, digital manipulation becomes a tool of further experiment, akin to the paint brush.

Slater experiments with traditional darkroom developing processes to push form and materiality to its limits. In Oelofse’s photographs, form literally melts away before our eyes. Pauw’s playful entries suspend everyday objects to mimic the paintings of early abstract artists. There is a painterly concern in Ané Strydom’s work which delights in the forms fabric and light can create, while Fraser’s hand-printed silver gelatin prints feel like graphite drawings. 

The sculptural forms evident in works from Oelofse, Sang Lee, Krijno and Slater belie their two dimensional nature and speak to the complexities that exist between physical and intangible space.

Throwing Shapes will show from 9 - 30 June 2018. For press enquiries and to request further material, please contact Jana Terblanche at

Please join us for the opening of Throwing Shapes on Saturday 9 June at 11h00 at 56 Church Street, Cape Town.