Donna Kukama (born in Mafikeng, South Africa) is an interdisciplinary artist whose work is informed by a performance-based research processes. Her work resists established ways of doing, often presenting institutions, book chapters, monuments, or historical archives that are as real as they are fictitious. Through performance, video, sound, texts, and non-monuments, her work questions the way in which histories are narrated, as well as how value systems are constructed, often resisting established “ways of doing”.
Kukama has exhibited and presented performances at several notable institutions and museums, including the Nottingham Contemporary in Nottingham, Kunsthal KaDe in Amersfoort; Padiglione de’Arte Contemporanea Milano in Milan; South African National Gallery in Cape Town; Museum of Modern Art in Antwerp; Tate Modern in London; nGbK in Berlin; and the New Museum in New York. She has participated in the 57th Belgrade Biennale; 12th Lyon Biennale; the 6th Moscow Biennale of Contemporary Art; 32nd Bienal de São Paulo and 8th Berlin Biennale. She was recently one of the small group of artists invited to launch the 10th Berlin Biennale’s public program, and was also a part of the South African Pavilion at the 55th Venice Biennale. She is the 2014 recipient of the Standard Bank Young Artist Award for Performance Art and was nominated for the MTN New Contemporaries Award (2010) and the Visible Award (as NON NON Collective) in 2011. She currently teaches at the Wits School of Arts in Johannesburg, South Africa and plans to complete her practice-led research PhD at the same institution. She is also a member of the artist collective Center for Historical Reenactments. Kukama lives and works in Johannesburg, South Africa.
Chapter Z: When Everything and Everyone Returned
This installation/performance piece is a chapter in a history book that the artist is creating.
It is about retrieving what has been wiped out from the past, deliberately and by the passage of time. It is about unearthing, remembering and redefining what Stellenbosch has been known for.