Wednesday, 10 March 2010
ATHI-PATRA RUGA at FRED
At Fred, we were welcomed with a photograph of naked black man with a distorted Elvis mask on. This was a piece of work from the solo show by South African artist Athi-Patra Ruga. His photographs, as well as being challenging and confronting questions of politics, xenophobia and racism also have the stylised perfection of fashion photography, in particular the ethereal images of a model photographed amongst sheep in what looks like a typical misty English field. The difficult issues tackled in Ruga’s work are emphasised more so in his tapestries when we later found out that they were made traditionally by local crafts women in South Africa.