Orms celebrates the importance of belonging to a strong professional network as a means to share experiences, resources and establish invaluable relationships. During Women’s Month, we welcomed back the Orms Circle Mentorship Programme which provides one young woman-identifying artist with the platform to break into the art industry!

This year we have partnered with Orms Cape Town School of Photography and The Market Photo Workshop, through this partnership the artist will be supported with the necessary skills training, challenged through critical engagement on their practice and empowered to present their first solo exhibition hosted by Orms.

The exhibition will be hosted at FORM, our new creative space, and curated with the guidance of these industry leaders. The selected artist will benefit from the expertise and guidance of a select group of mentors, who you can get reacquainted with in our Meet The Mentors post.

In no particular order, meet the Orms Circle Mentorship Programme’s (OCMP) top 5.

Zanele Ndlovu

Market Photo Workshop alumni Zanele Ndlovu is a documentary photographer currently based in Johannesburg. Her interest in visual anthropology stems from her early teens, in her own words, “I wanted to create a family album I never had“. Focusing on documentary photography and the narrative behind an image, Ndlovu’s work takes on a critical view of social, political and cultural issues.

Her practice explores the relationship of people and their identity, their culture and the places they inhabit, often observing and drawing inspiration from her environment and reflecting upon lived experiences. Having engaged in topics such as child brides and woman initiation, Ndlovu’s work reproduces familiar images into conceptually layered installations.

You can see more of Ndlovu’s work here.

Shana-Lee Ziervogel

Shana-Lee Ziervogel is a multidisciplinary artist whose work is focused on the complexities and challenges they face being a person of colour within the colonial space that is Cape Town. Their work addresses the generational and hereditary trauma they face through their daily life; and how they find ways to heal from these traumas.

Through the medium of photography Ziervogel uses objects and spaces which they identify with as home, and reconstructs the narrative that they have been painted with i.e being a heteronormative so-called coloured person. They do this through the confrontational gaze of their host Frida se kind who accommodates Ziervogels various personalities and energies that inhabit their physical body.

Locally, Ziervogel has been involved in group exhibitions with 99 on Loop (2018) and Eclectica Contemporary Gallery (2020). To see more of Ziervogel’s work, do have a look their Instagram account here. You can also see “Frida se kind- Meisie Kyk Hoe Lyk Jou Hare“, a moving video piece and tribute by Ziervogel here.

Litemba Mpambani

Litemba Mpambani is a visual artist working in photography, digital collage, sculpture and performance. Thematically, Mpambani’s work is a distinct commentary on various socio-political issues. Her approach to art-making is unapologetically feminist, and makes use of imagery that interrogates and embraces various femininities.

In her practice, Mpambani questions notions of gender and gender roles, while interrogating alternatives for masculinity that are more constructive and ultimately alternatives for hegemonic gender. Mpambani’s work has been selected for the Through the Lens Collective’s “Photographs Are Not Facts” exhibition (2020) and has also been collected by the National Worker’s Museum.

To see more of Mpambani’s work, have a look here.

Lesego Seoketsa

Lesego Seoketsa is a multidisciplinary artist working in photography, collage, painting and garment construction. In her practice, Seoketsa makes use a variety of media including digital, acrylic and oil paints, charcoal and chalk pastel.

Seoketsa is inspired by the process of deconstructing the concept of identity, as a way to reconstruct a new one. This can be seen through the collaging of photography – the cutting and manipulatation of the images so that a new image may be created, giving it a new meaning or identity.

The motivation behind her work is the process of healing, as well as finding stability and fluidity within the perception of herself and her identity. Seoketsa is deeply inspired by the story of South Africa and deeply longs for a better future for the nation. She also draws inspiration from Western renaissance to mid-century art – prompting her to question the presence and documentation of African art during these periods.

Seoketsa’s Instagram account is a digital catalogue of her work, which you can see here. You can also see her contribution to “A VIRTUAL EXHIBITION: THE ART OF SELF PORTRAITURE here.

Nonkululeko Dube

Nonkululeko Dube is a photographer and writer based in Johannesburg.  She is currently a student of the Photojournalism and Documentary Photography Programme at The Market Photo Workshop. 

As a photographer Dube’s work focuses on documentary and conceptualized photography. She focuses on recording memories of the past and traumatic instants as a catharsis, and aims to discover environmental and social issues that prompt humans to start investigating within and questioning the norm.  Most her work, which is a reflection of sexuality and documentation of real events, is inspired by her background and the way she was raised as a girl child. She always felt growing up that she was oppressed by her own  traditional and religious values.

Her first exhibition was a group exhibition at the Market Photo Workshop in collaboration with the  Netherlands Embassy on Sexuality and Gender Based violence titled “Volume  44”. Her second exhibition was in Heidelberg, Germany at the Queer Festival  titled “Breaking Gender Stereotypes”. 

You can see more of Dube’s work here.

Now more than ever, woman identifying artists need to take up space. Their work must be acknowledged as significant and important contribution to art discourse – this is what we hope to achieve with the OCMP. To gain a deeper understanding of the potential of the Orms Circle Mentorship Programme, we spoke to OCMP alumni Yonela Makoba, who is also a mentor for this years programme. Hear what she had to say about her experience here.

Keep an eye out on our social pages to see who our next Orms Circle mentee will be!

Categories: Art FORM Orms Circle