Applause, 1945


Unique Artwork

Bronze


CM H 61 W 40

IN H 24.02 W 15.75

Certificate of authenticity



Applause, 1945

Across sketches, prints, sculptures, and installations, Dumile Feni reflects, on the one hand, the tumultuousness of living as a young, black artist during apartheid, and then the transience of exile. On the other hand, Feni’s work touches on issues of history, politics, erotics, and human connection.

Dumile Feni

Dumile Feni was born in 1942 in the small town of Withuis in Worcester. With only a grade three education, Feni relocated to Queenstown in the Western Cape. During his teens Feni made and sold terracotta sculptures from the Queenstown Museum.

From there, Feni moved on to Johannesburg, where he branched out to other mediums with the support of artists and intellectuals such as Ephraim Ngatane, Lionel Abrahams, Bill Ainslie, Barney Simon, and Cecil Skotnes. Feni’s popularity both at home and abroad, as well as the critical nature of his work, attracted the attention of the apartheid regime, which drove the artist to assume voluntary exile in London in 1968. From there, Feni moved to the United States, where he spent the last decade of his life. Although Feni experienced periods of success and recognition, a large portion of his life in exile was spent in poverty, as the artist struggled to exhibit work. In 1991, shortly before his planned return to South Africa, he died from heart failure while shopping at his favourite music store, Tower Records in New York. His body was returned to South Africa and he is buried in Johannesburg.

Across sketches, prints, sculptures, and installations, Dumile Feni reflects, on the one hand, the tumultuousness of living as a young, black artist during apartheid, and then the transience of exile. On the other hand, Feni’s work touches on issues of history, politics, erotics, and human connection.

Since his death, Feni’s works have been exhibited widely across the globe. Feni was posthumously awarded the Order of Ikhama...

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Gallery MOMO

Gallery MOMO is a contemporary art gallery with a focus on African art and art from the Diaspora. The gallery has spaces in Johannesburg and Cape Town, South Africa.

Since opening their doors in 2002, Gallery MOMO has developed a strong creative and intellectual platform for showcasing a substantial portfolio of South African, continental and international contemporary art.

The gallery also manage the estates of notable 20th century South African masters.

Gallery MOMO hosts a residency programme for local and international curators and artists where we aim to encourage an international dialogue and cooperation between artists from different parts of the world.


Gallery MOMO Cape Town
16 Buiten Street
Ground Floor
Cape Town 8001

Opening hours:
Mon to Fri 9am- 5pm
Sat 9am - 1pm


Gallery MOMO Johannesburg
52 7th Avenue
Parktown North
Johannesburg 2193

Opening hours:
Mon to Fri 9am - 5pm
Sat 9am - 4pm

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Curated by Gallery MOMO

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