A Selection: The SABC Collection ran at the FADA Gallery at the University of Johannesburg (UJ) from 25 March to 5 May 2023.

Encompassing both traditional and new media, this exhibition featured seminal artworks by a range of South African artists and was not concerned with imposing an interpretation on either the viewer on the artwork. A Selection was a curated conversation and a reflection on our shared humanity as South Africans living our lives within the vaster aegis of time and the universe.

‘It is particularly exciting for us to see this selection of works from the Collection being exhibited here at the University of Johannesburg, an institution of higher learning that so strongly foregrounds art and design as one of South Africa’s key drivers of ingenuity, creativity, discourse and active engagement with public culture – past and present,’ said curator Koulla Xinisteris. ‘We share this deep commitment to the critical value and generative power of art and design in South African culture. It has been a real pleasure and inspiration to absorb the vitality and energy of this building over these past few weeks while hanging and hosting the exhibition.’

The exhibition at UJ was the latest in a range of exhibitions that have showcased work from the Collection, including the award-winning Making Waves at Johannesburg Art Gallery (JAG), the National Arts Festival and the Castle of Good Hope; and Scape at the Durban International Convention Centre as part of COP 17, the United Nations Climate Change Conference, in 2011. It was the first exhibition off of the SABC premises since the Collection’s participation in FNB Art Joburg in 2019 with Joburg, Our Joburg.

A Selection and the Collection as a whole forge a bridge of knowledge – experiential, lived and acquired – towards purpose, hybridity, meaningful connectivity, and the sharing of knowledge through exchanges with students and the public at large.

‘Visual art communicates through a directness of experience, conveying with authenticity and genuineness what was thought, felt or channelled by the artist when making the work,’ said Xinisteris at the opening of the exhibition. ‘We hope that this curated selection serves to join the dots and build connectivity between what South African artists are making in the present and what they were making in the past.

‘We hope that students and researchers will spend time in the gallery viewing and engaging with the work,’ she said. ‘Ideally, it might even inspire new bodies of work, fresh research projects or original lines of thinking around a particular theme or artist’s practice.’