Mongezi Ncaphayi: Journey to the One

SMAC Gallery, Johannesburg, South Africa
01 Dec 2016 - 14 Jan 2017

Mongezi Ncaphayi: Journey to the One

Mongezi Ncaphayi | Inner Sanctum I | 2016 | Mixed Media, Indian Ink and Watercolour on Cotton Rag | 170 x 130 cm

Journey to the One follows Mongezi Ncaphayi’s debut solo exhibition, Spirit’s Response, which he recently presented across the country as the 2013 ABSA L’Atelier Gerard Sekoto Award winner.

Ncaphayi creates intricate, compulsive networks of contours and colours, carefully mapped out – as if tracing the narrative of a spontaneously evolving landscape. This new exhibition shows a departure from printmaking techniques, for which Ncaphayi is well known, and features a number of gestural works on paper that reveal the artist’s hand.

Functioning as “spiritual maps”, Ncaphayi considers this new body of work as primary drawings in which he develops a language, through refining a tonal palette that intuitively illustrates notions of spiritual reform that are independent of religion, in his ongoing investigation of what he calls, a “guide to the unknown”.

Journey to the One is Mongezi Ncaphayi’s first solo exhibition with the gallery and will run until 14 January 2017.

Opening on Thursday, 1 December at 6pm in Johannesburg.

The opening is part of First Thursdays on the Keyes Art Mile.





Mongezi Ncaphayi was born in 1983 in Benoni, Eastern Gauteng, South Africa and currently lives and works in Johannesburg, South Africa. Ncaphayi graduated, with a Diploma in Art & Design, from the Ekurhuleni East College, Benoni in 2005 and completed a Professional Printmaking Course at the Artist Proof Studio, Johannesburg in 2008. During 2012, Ncaphayi obtained a Certificate in Advanced Studies from the School of the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston, USA.
In 2013 Ncaphayi was the recipient of the prestigious Absa L’Atelier Gerard Sekoto Award, earning him a three-month residency at the Cite Internationale Des Arts in Paris, France. Ncaphayi has participated in a number of international group exhibitions and public art projects including: South African Voices at the Washington Printmakers Gallery in the U.S.A in 2014; Alternative Spaces at Plateforme On Time, in Paris, France in 2013 and Trans-Atlantic Fun-O-Pack: Print Exchange at the Edinburgh School of Arts in Edinburgh, Scotland in 2012.
In 2015, Ncaphayi participated in various group exhibitions that included, Back To The Future II. Abstract Art in South Africa: Past and Present at SMAC Gallery in Stellenbosch and The Collaborative Spirit, No Man’s Art Gallery in Amsterdam, Netherlands.
Mongezi Ncaphayi recently returned from the Thami Mnyele Foundation in Amsterdam where he was the artist in residence as part of the Thami Mnyele Award. His works are included in many public and private collections (both local and international), including Smithsonian National Museum of African Art, Washington D.C., USA; Museum of Fine Arts Boston, USA and The Ampersand Foundation, New York, USA.


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