NSC PAST PAPERS AND MEMOS
INSTRUCTIONS AND INFORMATION
Read the following instructions carefully before commencing marking:
- This memorandum consists of EIGHT questions. Candidates had to answer any FIVE questions for a total of 100 marks.
- It is MOST IMPORTANT that allowance is made for the candidates in many instances:
- Candidates must be given credit for providing their own opinions and ideas in answers.
- Credit must be given for lateral thinking.
- Arguments and statements must be well reasoned and qualified by reference to specific factors.
- Questions and subsections must be numbered clearly and correctly. Bullets usually act as guidelines to help structure candidates' answers.
- Information and artworks discussed in one answer must not be credited if repeated in other answers, but artworks may be cross-referenced.
- Where applicable, candidates must name the artist and title of each artwork mentioned.
- Where appropriate, candidates may discuss both two- and three-dimensional artworks in any answer.
- Remember that many candidates will be discussing these examples, never having seen them before. Markers therefore cannot expect factual, academic information. They should draw upon their own experiences, cultures and interpretations of the artworks, within the context of the question. Therefore, markers need to be open-minded and flexible in the marking process.
GENERAL INFORMATION FOR MARKERS
- This memorandum is to serve as both a guideline for markers as well as a teaching tool. Therefore, the memorandum for certain questions is in greater depth, as the information may be used as learning material. Other parts of the memorandum may merely be a suggested guideline.
- NOTE: Markers are encouraged to reward candidates for what they know, rather than punish them for what they don't know.
- Although the information for the questions is given in point form, candidates must use an essay/paragraph format discussing their information in a holistic manner.
- Candidates must answer all the questions in FULL SENTENCES or PARAGRAPHS, according to the requirements of each question. Answers in point form cannot receive full marks.
It is expected of the CANDIDATE to demonstrate the following:
- To answer any FIVE questions for a total of 100 marks.
- Questions and sub-sections to be numbered clearly and correctly.
- Information already discussed in one question, not to be repeated. If repeated, marks are allocated the first time only. Cross reference to works of art is allowed.
- That answers will be in full sentences and paragraphs, according to the instructions for each question. POINT FORM WILL EARN ONLY MINIMAL MARKS.
- The use of correct art terminology.
- The use and implementation of visual analysing and critical thinking.
- Writing and research skills within a historical and cultural context.
- Placing of specific examples within a cultural, social and historical context.
- An understanding of characteristics/peculiar creative style.
- The identification of the professional practice of local artists.
It is expected of the MARKER to demonstrate the following:
- Acceptance of substantiated reasoning within the context of the question.
- Keeping in mind information already supplied above in some of the questions.
- To mark according to guidelines supplied to the candidates above.
- To recognise that this memorandum is to serve as both a guideline for markers as well as a teaching tool. For this reason the information for some answers is in greater depth and information concerning other answers, may merely be suggested guidelines.
- To reward learners for what they know, rather than discrediting them for what they do not know.
- To refer to the Visual Arts SAG document rubric (p24) as guideline to assess levels of achievement. (See next page)
- Remember that many candidates will be discussing these examples never having seen them before. Markers therefore cannot expect factual academic information. They should draw upon their own experiences, cultures and interpretations of the artworks, within the context of the question. Therefore, markers need to be open minded and flexible in the marking process.
ACHIEVEMENT RATING CODE
TOPIC 4: VISUAL CULTURE STUDIES 🖲
QUESTION 1: THE EMERGING VOICE OF BLACK ART IN THE 1950s AND 1960s
1.1 Subject Matter
FIGURE 1a is a figurative expression of life in the township that shows an everyday scene of people going about their daily business. Three women with their backs to the viewer hold their young ones as they rush to a salesman’s truck, to help themselves with the grocery pick and return home before the turbulent gusty weather worsens into a storm that the dark grey blue sky in the background portends. The fact that the women are moving with their children suggests they have nobody to leave them with in their care at home, as the men are out at work or minding their own business. In the background on the left of the truck, a man holds on to the swaying stem of a tree that threatens his existence, while on the left the milk salesman cycles while going about his daily rounds. The chimney smoke in the houses speaks of the cooking that is going on the coal stoves in the houses, as the occupants had no electricity.
FIGURE 1b: The physical effect of the Group Areas Act on the lives of people is shown in this gouache painting. People were relocated from the places such as Simonstown and District Six, which were then classified as ‘white areas’ by the governments. They were moved to new developments on the Cape Flats such as Atlantis, Bonteheuwel, Lavender Hill and Ocean View. The new communities were located in sandy areas without proper roads and they were far away from jobs and town centres. This was part of the suffering caused through the displacement of previously close-knit communities. In the work Clarke depicts the experience of people having to walk to their desolate homes on the sand-dunes struggling against the strong ‘Cape Doctor’ (south easterly wind) for which the peninsula is famous. Three people, a young woman with a bag and a man with a child are walking towards three meagre corrugated iron houses.
Composition and focal point
In FIGURE 1a three women and their young ones all stand with their backs to the viewer, occupying the foreground with two trees, one visible on the extreme left and one partially visible on the extreme right, all making the viewer appear to be following at a distance. The central part is an open space occupied by lean dogs represented in profile that are engaged in nose-to-nose threat play.
The background is dissected in to two parts by the truck. On the left a house, two trees and a figure and on the right, the cyclist, milk man, the tree and a house. The set up makes the composition asymmetrical. The viewer’s eye first picks up the three women, particularly the one in a red dress. The direction they are facing directs the viewer’s eye to the form of angular truck rendered to emphasise the use of linear perspective. The strong red dress of the woman in the foreground attracts the viewer's eye as a dominant focal point which is then picked up in the red scarf on the other form and the shirt of the man on the bicycle. In this rectangular composition, the truck in the middle distance also serves to lead the eye into the composition. The strong contrast of the warm yellow of the earth advancing towards the viewer is very reminiscent of the work of both Gauguin and Nolde. The cooler blues of the sky in the distance gives a sense of recession of space.
In FIGURE 1b the three people with their backs to the viewer are portrayed by employing a linear perspective. This makes the viewer seem to be following in their seemingly long and tired trudging footsteps. Everything is leaning to the right, the sparse grass on the dunes, the ripples on the dunes, the tree and the figures that speaks of the strength of gale force experienced. The inclination of the two figures to the left paralleled with the diagonal lines of the sand dunes and the line in the sky all create a sense of rhythm that speaks of a shared experience. The artwork can be divided into two parts; the creamlike dull greens occupying the foreground and the purple blues and whites in the background sky. The focal point is the girl with the bag. She is not only the largest figure in the work but the lines of the sand dunes lead the eye to her. The houses confirm the use of linear perspective. There is also use of aerial perspective that resulted in light colours and less defined shadows on the smaller figures and sand dunes in the middle ground.
The use of colour
FIGURE 1a: The painting is mainly characterised by the use of strong contrasting colours such as greens, yellows, reds, blues and browns for the different aspects. This is except for the woman on the left and her son who are painted in dull cream and cream-brown. The figures are painted in strong colours that quickly capture the viewer’s eye. The woman in the central foreground is painted in strong red that links her to cyclist in the background. The one on the left is in strong yellows with her baby’s dress and head dress being in red. The trees and their foreground from which they stem are treated with strong greenish yellow that contrasts with the very warm yellow used for the central part and background. The strong contrast of the warm yellow of the earth advancing towards the viewer is very reminiscent of the work of both Gauguin and Nolde. The cooler blues of the sky in the distance gives a sense of recession of space.
FIGURE 1b: In contrast to Maqhubela, Clarke uses colour that is subtle; mostly white, cream, brown, grey and blue, accurately recreating the washed-out colour of the Cape Flats on a windy day. The dark browns are repeated throughout the composition in long shadows on the little girl and the man, and the girl’s blown hair and dress. The yellow house at the top gives a little warmth and may be symbolic – after the struggle against the wind, the simple house at least gives protection against the elements and difficult social conditions.
FIGURE 1a: Maqhubela creates a lively scene full of expressionistic colour and vibrancy. His figurative expression of life in the township shows the everyday scene of people going about their daily business. Maqhubela uses strong contrasting colour which are very marginally tonal to render it almost flat. He employs a dark thick broken outline to enhance the definition of his shapes and form and rough surface outlines for texture. Maqhubela like Van Gogh uses thick impasto paint that forms strong lines and winding brushstrokes creating a sense of energy and life in the trees.
FIGURE 1b: Clarke used subtle colours, mostly white, cream, brown grey and blue, accurately recreating the washed out colour of the Cape Flats. The cloudy sky has been treated schematically. There is simplification in and angularity in the shapes that shows an expressionistic influence. Everything is stripped down to basic shapes as the sand dunes are, by representing them as angular shapes. This angularity is repeated in the sharply defined shape of the girl’s dress and more painted rippled surface of the sand dunes. Clarke’s ability create stylised geometric rhythm throughout the whole composition is represented in this painting.
The atmosphere and mood
FIGURE 1a: Energetic/Excited – Everything depicted is active and busy.
FIGURE 1b: Sad and Depressing – Experience these people had to walk back to their desolate homes on sand dunes, struggling against the ‘Cape Doctor’ (south easterly wind).
Accept relevant and insightful commentary, with substantiation.
The use of the figure(s) in each work
FIGURE 1a: Figures are used to speak of suffering that was caused to them through displacement.
FIGURE 1b: Figures are used to show how people went about their daily lives with enthusiasm in spite of the odds.
Artwork that has the greatest visual impact
Accept relevant and insightful choice with substantiation.
Candidates must score at least a mark from each bullet. (8)
1.2 Learners to write an essay of at least 1½ pages in which you discuss and evaluate examples by any TWO artists you have studied whose works reflect ordinary people going about their daily lives in a manner that expresses calm endurance of their painful experiences or an atmosphere of bustling activities that masks these experiences.
Their discussion should include the following:
- Name of artist(s) and artworks
- Subject matter
- Use of compositional devices
- Formal elements
- Style and techniques
- Message conveyed
QUESTION 2: SEARCH FOR AN AFRICAN IDENTITY IN SOUTH AFRICAN ART SINCE 1950
2.1 Subject matter and composition
FIGURE 2a: The Kraal one of Preller’s poetic interpretation of Ndebele life and culture. It is a modern painting featuring African women in a village. In the bottom right corner, a woman with red hair walks toward the centre of town. The shirt she is wearing only covers the top half of her breasts and the expression on her face is solemn. She is about to pass a woman in a pink dress sitting hunched away from the viewer. A woman’s face is very near the bottom centre of the picture, her hair is either very unusual, or there are objects protruding from her skull. The bottom left corner feature four women, none of them wearing shirts, with slouched postures. One of the women is lying down in the street.
The centre of the painting features a red llama-like creature balancing on an abstract object, with a giant candle on its back and tiny figures dancing around the flame of the candle. Toward the left of this oddity is a naked woman hugging a candle that is twice as tall as she is. One of the homes in the middle of the scene has large chunks of roof missing. The house to the left of it has flags and blankets draped over it, possibly hiding more holes.
The work is a visual universe of the exotic, exhilarating and strange – an ancient African universe. A personal romantic vision of an archetypal African tribe. Still life objects as elements of the central theme: domestic or household gods, masks, patterned vase, shells, mangoes and eggs.
In FIGURE 2b the fishermen are drawing nets. Battis painted a naturalistic scene of the daily tasks of a group of African people. The people are represented as anonymous silhouettes which is reminiscent of the figures represented by the San. The figures can be divided into two groups: The diagonal line running in the left
hand corner of half-bent figures with one standing that seem to be steading the boats and in the upper part another parallel diagonal line of figures, facing the ones below, majority of which are bent-double trying to haul the catch in the nets. The composition suggest that the viewer is standing from an oblique aerial position looking down at the activity, such that the flat blue tonalities of broken brush strokes do not suggest much spatial recession, thus making the background relatively flat.
In FIGURE 2a one makes observations of tribal life and rituals from the mysterious surviving ruins, fetishes and symbols from the art of the primeval past. The village is divided into two sections: The foreground section that is occupied by women, many of which are half-dressed and occupy the margins of the section and the men in section at the back.
The centre of the painting features a red llama-like creature balancing on an abstract object, with a giant candle on its back and tiny figures dancing around the flame of the candle. Towards the left the candle is repeated and enlarged to be twice as tall as the naked woman hugging it. Behind it two other naked women sit on the floor facing the candle. The candle is white and lit. It could be symbolising the importance of purity and virginity celebrated by the virgins of the tribe.
This is probably done before a senior mother sitting in the doorway who is tasked with the duty of mentoring young girls to keep their virginity sacred. Purity becomes the drum-beat of transition to womanhood. In the men’s section four naked men are dancing around a giant phallic structure that appears to double as a bird’s nest. And in the very top right corner is a giant egg, sitting alone in a fenced yard. The structure could be symbolising manhood that is celebrated by men after circumcision. An egg alone in a fenced yard representing how virgin women are guarded until the time is right to lose their virginity – the egg hatching. There are many white birds in the picture; there is a belief that that they are the souls of human beings who have reached a high state of perfection. The bird is the freest of the free, the fattener, the fertiliser. It is also known that Northern-speaking people never cut these trees down.
Why? These are the trees upon whose branches migratory birds rest, when they come into southern Africa at certain times of the year and birds are symbols of sacredness and fertility.
In FIGURE 2b Walter avoided symbolism that we encounter in his Symbols of life and Mantis man.
Accept any substantiated symbolic interpretation.
FIGURE 2a: Preller employs a format that balances the horizontal and vertical to create harmony, peace and unity in the work. The horizontal landscape speaks of peace and calm while the vertical represented in the structures and the figures that speak of spiritual and cultural power and strength in the community. He also uses a hard-edged precise outline that defines the forms and figure which has a textured soft thin for naturalistic textural qualities and stylised patterns. Preller also uses strong contrasting colours; reds, browns, yellow-greens, white and cool pithalo blues. The warm colours are mainly used for the forms in the foreground punctuated with a few whites, like on the candles and birds and cool pithalo blues on the faces of the walls. The background is rendered in cool pitalo blues to enhance the spatial recession.
FIGURE 2b: Lines-Batiss applies a relatively horizontal format, filled with thick black angular lines that are shaped silhouettes representing the black fishermen. Diagonal curved lines are used to suggest the shape of boats and the tugging of the nets. Linear effects of calligraphic marks can be seen in his handling of the squirming fish. Colours – Batiss used mixed reds and oranges for the boats and nets to contrast them with the variety of blues that were used to depict the water, thus creating a feeling of three-dimensional depth.
FIGURE 2a: The style is surrealist with elements and imagery of the real and the non-real combined to create a dreamlike atmosphere. Intense colour and distortion is employed to create a perfectly balanced palette. Stylised; sound structural composition, with discrepancies in scale, particularly of the figures, in relation to the perspective is used. The work has decorative qualities. Strong contrasting colours are used and paint is smoothly blended in true surrealistic style.
FIGURE 2b: Batiss painted a naturalistic scene of the daily tasks of a group of African people. It is most probably a scene that he witnessed and recreated in an expressive style. It is related to the fauvists’ decorative composition and it can also be seen in the rhythmic spreading of figures in combination with the diagonal curved shapes of the fishing nets. The blackness of the figures contrasts starkly with the background in which the loose brushstrokes create the feeling of movement of water and abundance of the fish caught in the nets. (10)
2.2 Learners to choose and interpret any TWO works by any other artist(s) they have studied, whose work has been influenced by African- /indigenous art forms (1 page).
They should refer to the following:
- Name of artists and titles of the work
- Visuals that relate to Africa-/indigenous art forms
- Use of material and style
- Content and meaning
Award marks for each of the two works as from 5 + 5. (10)
QUESTION 3: ART AND POLITICS: RESISTANCE ART
3.1 Learners to study the visual source FIGURE 3a and in a paragraph discuss how this work reflects abuse and exploitation of cheap Black labour:
In FIGURE 3a Zylla used a complex cast of characters to tell the story of South Africa in 1985. Four young black boys are relaxing on sand dunes in the centre of the work; then we realise that they are behind a dartboard with darts being thrown at them. In the top left-hand corner, the scoreboard tells us the game is called Killer. This ominous feeling is reinforced by the cast of figures who encircle the boys. There are a lot of military figures who are attacking the boys. These figures are based on model soldiers and include Roman soldiers and knights in shining armour. On the left-hand side, there are parliamentarians watching the game. Their desks are huge bank notes, the two larger smiling figures are previous ministers of finance with their eyes blinkered by banknotes. There also skyscrapers made from stacks of money and a large pair of hands pushes more money under the army attacking the four boys. On the right, there are cars parked so that the people inside can view the game. At the top are matchbox houses of Khayelitsha which ironically means ‘new home’. In the work Zylla shows how money played a huge role in upholding the apartheid system. Those in power wanted to retain financial power and needed to exploit the huge pool of cheap black labour at the cost of the labourers’ lives. (6)
3.2 Learners to study the visual illustration and in a paragraph of about ½-–¾ page answer the following:
- Describe and explain what they perceive to have happened.
- Discuss the different aspects of the medium used and how they enhance the message
- How the title adds to the message conveyed
FIGURE 3b was inspired by a news video that shocked the world. The footage showed how local SAPS dog unit policemen trained their dogs by letting them loose on illegal African immigrants from Mozambique. The dogs attacked three men and probably killed one of them. The incident is a brutal reminder of how much racism is still a part of South Africa. It is also upsetting that a member of the dog unit filmed the incident. The work is an installation of a series of life size sculptures, partly representational and partly constructed from discarded objects. A victim lies in pain while a dog attacks him, while a policeman watches and another policeman makes a video. The two policemen are monumental figures who are focussing their attention on the victim. One holds a chain trailing a dog muzzle. They are terrifying figures. The installation is accompanied by an audio track of the dogs barking, the cries of the victims and the crude language of the policemen. The title of the artwork is ironically the same as a pop song of the time. Bester reminds that all too often in our society the ‘dogs are let out’ and those who let them out pretend not to know anything about it. (6)
3.3 Choose ONE specific artwork that you have studied that make us aware of the injustices in our past and present. Discuss this works in detail (1 page).
Refer to the following:
- Name of the artist and title of the artwork
- Subject matter
- Media and technique
- Stylistic characteristics
- Success of art as a tool for making us aware of the injustice
QUESTION 4: ART, CRAFT AND SPIRITUAL WORKS MAINLY FROM RURAL SOUTH AFRICA
Many rural black South African artists have been influenced by Christianity which has been combined with traditional spiritual beliefs and customs.
4.1. With reference to the statement above, learner to analyse and interpret the given illustration FIGURE 4a by writing an essay of ½-–¾ page. They should refer to the following in their essays:
- Medium and technique
- Subject matter
- Style and significance of the text
- Meaning of the artwork
FIGURE 4a: Muafangejo’s Christian influence started at the Anglican Mission Station at Epinga where her mother had relocated with him after his father’s death. His talent for drawing was noticed by an uncle who encouraged him to draw everyday life. An American priest, John Mallory, suggested that he should study further in art at the Rorke’s Drift art centre. Muafangejo trained at the centre between 1968 to 1969. There under the influence of Azaria Mbatha Muafangejo developed his artistic ability and preference for linocut, a medium used for FIGURE 4a.
FIGURE 4a is a personalised representation of the birth of Christ: In the forefront, Mary partially facing the viewer kneels in a prayer posture on the extreme right. On the extreme left Joseph rendered in profile faces Mary. Between them in the centre baby Jesus lies in an oval shaped manger. Behind the manger two cattle look down upon the new born Christ. In the background bending branches of vegetation and angular stylised shapes and patterns punctuate these branches to create an atmosphere of thick vegetation. In the work, Muafangejo’s simplifies his figures and forms to shapes with clear cut white outline. Thus his style can be described as an expressive version of reality which reveals a deeper insight into life as perceived and experienced, for instance the scale of Christ is much bigger and older than a new-born which emphasises that Christ existed before birth. Another example is the ranking of the divine figures where Jesus and Mary are accorded haloes whereas Joseph is denied one. In combination with the expressive way in which he captured experiences, he also created a highly decorative style with repetition of lines and shapes which then resulted in pattern-like style. Through this decorative style he created strong rhythmic effects in the contrast of flat black areas as discernible in the figures of Joseph, Jesus and one of the cattle or lines seen in the positive and negative forms for instance the floor of the manger, Mary’s dress, one of the cattle and the angular forms in the background amidst the branches at the top.
Typical of his style, Muafangejo has provided a text in this work – “The birth of Christ in 1977”. Since the work was probably completed in 1977, this statement could be stating that completion of the work that year was at the time of celebrating the birth of Christ.
Accept any other explanation with logical substantiation.
FIGURE 4b is a shrine figurine and is therefore supposed to be housed in a shrine for religious purposes. The sculpture would be regarded as a power figure and the tribal people would pray to her and offer her gifts. (7)
4.2 Learners to discuss the forms and features of the sculpture that render it a typical rural African carving and show how the posture of figurine speaks of its spiritual power.
- The features tend to be geometric simplifications. The head is a simplified cone with mask like shape of the face; big round eyes; breasts are sharply pointed cones etc.
- The head carries a head dress that is markedly pushing out into space. It is designed to attract and concentrate spiritual power.
- The neck, torso and arms are elongated.
- The body is small as it is less important
- The mother figurine is carrying a little baby on her back suggesting she could be a fertility ancestral figurine.
- The mother figurine is kneeling in a respectful/and honouring posture expected of an African woman serving her husband or a higher spiritual. Her eyes seem closed as if in prayer. The posture could also be viewed as a posture of a figurine expecting to be honoured in a manner of her posture and offerings to her should be placed in a receptacle she is holding out. (6)
4.3 Refer to FIGURE 4c: Credo Mutwa merges culture and nature which led him to be defined as an ‘indigenous environmentalist’.
With the above in mind, Learners to define the characteristics of the statue within the context of the following
- Forms and features
The earliest written dated literal references to the term “Mother Earth” occur in Mycenaean Greek. Ma-ka (transliterated as ma-ga), "Mother Gaia", written in Linear B syllabic script (13th or 12th century BC). Mother Earth is a living Goddess. This belief has been held by numerous cultures throughout history, and, in certain traditions, such as shamanism, is still regarded as central in terms of both philosophy and practice. In many of the world’s mythologies, mother nature refers to the earth goddess. An Earth goddess is a deification of the Earth, in the sense of fertile soil – producer and feeder of nature. The title of the artwork derives from this.
The artwork is a huge, broad sculpture of a woman towering three times the height of the shrub where it is sited. This speaks of the size of the earth as a producer and nurturer of life. The site of the statue – Shamwari Game Reserve adds to the interpretation of the role of mother earth; produce, feed, nurture and conserve/protect which is the purpose of this huge game reserve-conservation.
Mother Earth has three breasts that represent birds, fish and animals on land. The figure is holding a mealie-kob which speaks of mother earth, the feeder, the provider of food to the land creatures. The skull she is leaning on represents the ancestors which play a vital role in the Xhosa culture. The dolphin is seen by Credo as man’s connection with nature and god. According to Mutwa both the whales and dolphins were supernatural creatures and incarnations of a dead god. According to Mutwa, the San were able to communicate with the dolphins by using a series of clicks and other sounds that are close to the Khoisan language.
Accept any other substantiated definition of the characteristics. (4)
4.4 Learners to review the three visual illustrations and show how is the notion of procreation is emphasised in the three artworks.
FIGURE 4a: Birth of Christ
FIGURE 4b: The shrine figurine is carrying a baby
FIGURE 4c: The three large breasts which are a source of food for creatures they represent (3)
QUESTION 5: MULTI-MEDIA AND NEW MEDIA – ALTERNATIVE CONTEMPORARY AND POPULAR ART FORMS IN SOUTH AFRICA
|“It’s very easy to say, ‘I could have done that,’ after someone’s done it. But I did it. It didn’t exist until I did it.” – Damien Hirst|
5.1 With reference to the above statement and visual source, FIGURE 5a, learners to write a paragraph (at least ½ page) in which they discuss the above statement by considering the following:
- The medium used
- The message of the artwork
FIGURE 5a was made using the following medium: glass, painted steel, silicone, monofilament, shark and formaldehyde solution.
The fact that the main focal point of observation is the shark naturally created and that all Damien had to do was to find a way of creating an illusion of it being alive expressing a life-threatening attack appearance, invited critics to reintroduce the question raised during Duchamp’s times of whether ready mades should be considered as art and resulted in comments being made to suggest that it was not art as anyone could have done it. Hirst responded, “But I did it. It didn’t exist until I did it.”
The message of the art work lies more in the interpretation of the title within the context of the art object – the shark in the tank. The piece consists of a dead tiger shark suspended in a tank of formaldehyde. It is intended to shock – and it certainly does – but its meaning goes much deeper. It could be meaning that in the mind of the living, the idea of life after death remains alive even though there is clear evidence of physical death, thus making physical death impossibility in the mind. Life after death remains an illusion in the mind and is represented in the physical appearance of the shark seeming to be alive and its appearance conserved so. This meaning kind of pokes fun at the beliefs of many religious denominations.
Once the initial shock of the shark’s presence subsides, you can engage with deeper conceptual layers of the piece.
This carcass is a raw chunk of nature, and yet there is something otherworldly about seeing a shark in this highly unnatural context. The blue liquid emulates the shark’s natural habitat – which makes for a startling juxtaposition in the environment of an art museum. The shark is not surrounded by undulating schools of fish, but rather, by museum patrons leisurely strolling around it with audio guides in hand. It puts your senses on edge, and you begin to wonder: is it museum-quiet at the bottom of the ocean? Inside the tank? On the other side of death?
The shark is both ghostly and ghastly. Its glowing whitish pallor grants it an ethereal presence in the murky formaldehyde, and yet it is in a visible state of decay. The shark tank functions as both a casket and artistic pedestal. The artwork constantly reminds you of two simple facts: This thing is dead. And when it was alive, it could have killed you.
Accept any other logical interpretation with substantiation.
Learner can only be allocated a maximum of two marks from an answer on each bullet. (4)
5.2 Also with reference to the above statement learners to analyse and discuss FIGURE 5b in essay format (at least ¾ page). They should consider the following:
- Application of art elements and principles
- Mediums relevant to the concept
- Meaning or message
For the Love of God is a sculpture by artist Damien Hirst produced in 2007. It consists of a platinum cast of an 18th-century human skull encrusted with 8,601 flawless diamonds, including a pear-shaped pink diamond located in the forehead that is known as the Skull Star Diamond. Basically, the sculpture takes the shape, spaces (positive and negative) and forms of the original skull except for the teeth which are real; natural ready-mades. The encrusting of the skull with the diamonds not only transformed the texture from smooth to rough but also transformed the appearance from frightening white to shiny ornamental look.
The skull’s teeth are original and were purchased by Hirst in London. The fact that the original from which the cast was made was a ready-made-natural and the diamonds encrusted were also ready-made reverberates the issue of what is considered art, as opposed to not art. As an art form, found objects tend to include the artist’s output – at the very least an idea about it, i.e. the artist's designation of the object as art – which is nearly always reinforced with a title. There is usually some degree of modification of the found object, although not always to the extent that it cannot be recognised, as is the case with ready-mades. In this case there is discernible modification which in spite of the fact that the title was just coined and says little about it, the work remains Hirst’s artwork.
The artwork is a Memento mori, or reminder of the mortality of the viewer. The skull is out of this world, celestial almost. It proclaims victory over decay. At the same time it represents death as something infinitely more relentless. Compared to the tearful sadness of a vanitas scene, the diamond skull is glory itself. What looks ornamental, precious and long-lasting carries death beneath it.
Accept any other logical interpretation with substantiation. (6)
5.3 For this question learners may not use a work which appears in this question paper. However, they may use a different work by one of the artists used in this paper.
In essay format, of at least one page, they must recall, discuss and compare at least TWO works in multimedia which you have studied, substantiating each of the following:
- Name the work/s as well as the artist
- Messages and/or meanings
- Influenced by which style of art
- Presentation (10)
QUESTION 6: POST-1994 – DEMOCRATIC IDENTITIY IN SOUTH AFRICA
In FIGURES 6a and 6b Thembinkosi Goniwe and Churchill Madikida critically deals with the issue of identity as a social construct respectively. While Goniwe deals with contemporary “unspoken racial constructs” that are visible today, Madikida questions imposed Amaxhosa traditions that infringe on one’s freedoms.
6.1 With the above in mind, write an essay of about ¾ of a page in which you discuss how each artist deals with his issue in the visual sources.
Refer to the following:
- Mediums used
- Style and technique
- The commentary these artists make
- Which one makes the strongest impact, with reasons for your choice
FIGURE 6a deals with the “unspoken racial constructs that are visible and implicit in our ‘Post-Colonial’ and Post- Apartheid era”. The Band-Aid strips are the misnomer of the so-called ‘flesh’ colour. The pink adhesive bandages point out that society is still white-orientated and that it is impossible to buy a brown bandage. The works makes a clear statement of the deep wounds left by Apartheid. Goniwe said, “We need to rupture white privilege and open up a two way dialogue.” From the work we learn that it was not for the racial constructs (symbolised in the pink bandage) that create a division between the two races, that the two-way dialogue is very much a possibility. As ‘white’ Payne is dressed in black and placed against a dark background and ‘black’ Goniwe is dressed in white and placed against a white background. Both share a lot of each other.
Churchill Madikida is a conceptual artist who makes use of a range of contemporary media such as video, photography and installations.
FIGURE 6b are stills from his video work titled Struggles of the heart. The video work starts with sound and a click of the tongue that speaks of the Xhosa language. The stills show a white covered face of an initiate (Madikida) whose creased face appears to have porridge forced into his mouth. The stills also speak of him choking and forcing it out. His eyes are pressed tightly closed in concentration and the mouth is wrinkled in pain.
The consumption and regurgitation of pap is a metaphor for the initiation and circumcision of young males in the isiXhosa tradition. Madikida’s face is painted white, which refers to the spiritual realm of purity. The video shows how the tradition of initiation is force-fed to him and how he rejects it. He therefore questions his identity as an isiXhosa man.
Learners to choose from the two artworks which work they think makes the strongest impact and give reasons for their choice. (8)
6.2 Candidate to choose TWO works done at a formal or informal school and to discuss these. THEY MUST NOT CHOOSE THE SAME WORKS AS ON THE QUESTION PAPER.
Learners to pay attention to art elements, compositional arrangements which show modernity or not, and how messages can be interpreted from the imagery. (12)
QUESTION 7: GENDER ISSUES
FIGURE 7a is a self-portrait by the artist Frida Kahlo. The Mexican artist’s personal life and history is directly portrayed in her art. Her work bears harrowing witness to her own physical and mental suffering. Nandipha Mntambo’s work ‘Emabutfo’ on the other hand deals with the representation and perception of the female body.
7.1 With reference to the statement above and FIGURES 7a and 7b, learners must discuss the possible meanings of these two works and how their work pertain to gender issues and gender identity. They must refer to the following:
- Use of title
- Subject matter
- Style and approach
Both titles are directly portraying/depicting gender-related topics.
Frida’s work bears harrowing witness to her own physical and mental suffering after getting involved in a road accident when the bus she was travelling on collided with a tram. In this painting, The Broken Column, Frida expresses her anguish and suffering in a most straightforward and horrifying way; she opens her torso to reveal a fractured column symbolising her injured spine making the split look like an earthquake fissure. The nails are stuck into her face and whole body. In the background is the earth with dark ravines. At the beginning, she painted herself nude but later covered her lower part up with something that looks like a hospital sheet. A broken column is put in place of her spine, hence the title The Broken Column.
The column appears to be on the verge of collapsing into rubble. Penetrating from loins to chin, the column looks phallic, and the sexual connotation is all the more obvious because of the beauty of Frida’s breasts and torso. Her broken body is supported by a steel corset. This is one of her most direct portrayals of her suffering – she cries white tears an expression of pain and suffering. Notwithstanding the portrayal of physical suffering, she retains her femininity seen in her long loose hair and exposed breasts showing she is still a sensual woman. Often in her work, the portrait is centralised to confront the viewer. She places herself against a background of an empty landscape, which could be symbolic of her life and yearning for a child.
Her work is a mixture of naivety, naturalism and Surrealism with strong Mexican folk Influences. Generally her face and figure is painted naturalistically but the nails on her body and split in her torso reveals the broken and the barren background that gives the work an aura of surrealism.
FIGURE 7b: The title of the work Emabutfo means warriors from the Swazi regiments to the royal residence of the king. The title makes reference to the cow hide moulds of her body that are displayed hanging in ranks like regiments marching to war. The tail hides hanging from the sides in the place of arms allude to the traditional hairy hide bands worn by both Zulu and Swazi warriors. But the hides are not of men but of females who are hairy. The hide forms become empty floating receptacles, at once beautiful and repulsive. These hairy feminine shapes defy our notion of feminine beauty. Their naked form reverberates nudity of the female form that is seductive and attractive but the fact that it is hairy, it becomes repulsive. The hairy skin cast in form, is used, to challenge and subvert preconceptions regarding representation of the female body and to disrupt perceptions of attractions and revulsions. Although the focus is on the human female body and identity in sculpture, it critiques the politics and aesthetics of femininity and beauty and is suggestive of the ways in which (black) women are re-interpreting their bodies and claiming visibility.
Nandipha has developed a distinctive aesthetic through her use of cowhide which she tans and moulds onto a casts of her body. She purchases the hide when it is as raw as possible in order to engage fully with the material – its smell, its textures causing revulsion but also provoking a consciousness of the physicality of it. She makes plaster moulds of her own body and envelops them with the still malleable cowhide that she has thoroughly cleaned and cured. The hide forms become empty floating receptacles, at once beautiful and repulsive. (8)
7.2 Learners to write an essay of at least 1½ pages, discussing the work of any TWO artists they have studied, who question gender identity. They must refer to specific works of art in their answer, which do not appear in this question paper.
The following must be included in their discussion:
- Name of artists and titles of the work
- Visuals that relate a questioning of gender identity
- Use of material and style
- Content and meaning
Award marks for each of the two works as from 6 + 6. (12)
QUESTION 8: ARCHITECTURE IN SOUTH AFRICA
“Africa is land under construction and local talent have stepped forward to shape the landscape. There is a lot of very good indigenous knowledge on the continent.” says Iain Low, professor of architecture at the University of Cape Town.
8.1 Considering the above-mentioned, study FIGURES 8a and 8b, and consider its relevance in its own time as an example of innovative architecture. Write an essay of one page, in which you evaluate the innovative accomplishments. You may include thoughts on the following:
- Principles of design applied
- Influences and creative thought
- Peculiar characteristics
- Aims and effective functionality
The building stands like a sculptural beacon giving a special identity to the site. The ground floor provides 106 square meters of gallery space. A metal fire escape which is separate from the building leads down from the top floor. It allows for creepers to be grown up its length which connects the building to nature aesthetically as well as improving the supply of oxygen.
There is an adjoining deck which offers views of Jan Smuts Avenue and the surrounding leafy suburbs. The five hundred tall aluminium slats which form the spiral are fourteen meters high and totally encase the three-storey building.
The building has a dramatic spiral shape and together with the illumination at night was designed to attract passers-by.
Further eco-friendly factors are the electricity produced by means of voltaic panels. Solar heating is used to heat the water. Rainwater is harvested and used for everything, except for drinking. (8)
8.2 In an essay of approximately 1½ pages, learners to clearly analyse TWO commemorative structures a South African architect/s. Discuss the shapes, materials and design which place them in a category of outstanding impact.
The following aspects may well be relevant:
- Names of architects/companies and buildings
- Special features
- Peculiar materials, technology and design
- Ecological considerations
- Environmental issues
- Functionality (12)