Division of one, 2019


Unique Artwork

Intervention on paper
6 frames of 56 x 76 cm


CM H 76 W 56

IN H 29.92 W 22.05

Signed by artist



Division of one, 2019

This work is part of the second solo exhibition of the Angolan/Portuguese artist Pedro Pires titled "six of one and half of a dozen of the other" at the Gallery MOMO.

This show is a continuation of Pires’s ongoing research into migration, nationality, and identity construction. Pires’s position as an Angolan-born, Portuguese-raised subject situates his national relationship in liminal space. ‘Belonging’ essentially to neither place raises questions that have to do with movement, history, and education. What is nationality? What makes us belong to a place, a country, a space? What is it to be Angolan or Portuguese in a contemporary postcolonial (or neocolonial) context? To what extent are we shaped by our education, or our ability to transform ourselves? Pires engages with these issues not just in a personal context. His work deals with issues that parallel other realities in a world marked by imperialism, migration, and change.

The objects in this exhibition are thus seen as interventions into questions of identity.

The drawings on show are the results of interventions on paper, where anthropomorphic shapes emerge from partially destroyed material, playing with concepts of destruction and re-construction. Bodies appear and disappear, paralleling the ways in which identity is fashioned, negotiated, and remade.

Pedro Pires

Pedro Pires creates sculptures and paper works that incorporate a wide range of mediums, from everyday objects – like plastic containers and rafia brooms – to industrial metal grinders. Pires’s practice works to draw out the utilitarian histories of mass-production and exploitation embedded in these items, as well as to explore questions about stereotypes and identity.

Pedro Pires was born in Luanda, Angola and currently lives and works between Lisbon and Luanda. Pires obtained a Masters Degree in Fine Arts from the Central Saint Martins College of Art and Design and was awarded the Fine Art Erasmus Scholarship from the University of Athens.

His works have been included in various solo and group exhibitions across the globe, including Angola, Australia, Canada, Italy, Portugal, South Africa, the UK, and the US. Most recently, Pires’s work was exhibited as a part of the Official Inauguration of POLDRA Public Sculpture Project in Viseu, Portugal, the Lorne Sculpture Biennale in Lorne, Australia, and From Africa to the Americas: Face-to-Face Picasso, Past and Present, at the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts.

Pedro Pires has been Laguna Art Prize finalist, as well as an Artemar Finalist. He has completed residencies in Australia, Angola, South Africa and the UK, including the prestigious Delfina Foundation in London. His works are included in the permanent collections of Figueiredo Ribeiro Collection, João de Brito, Nuno Frota, PLMJ Foundation, and Mishcon de Reya Collection.

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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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