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Dimakatso Mathopa

Artist 314

Dimakatso Mathopa

Subverting the Colonial Gaze

Printmaking

Artist Dimakatso Mathopa

Dimakatso Mathopa (born 1995) is a South African artist who specializes in printmaking. Mathopa is currently living and practicing in Johannesburg, South Africa.


As a printmaker she uses the cyanotype printmaking process, silkscreen and other techniques like the Van Dyke brown in her work.


Part of artist Dimakatso Mathopa’s ongoing prinmskibg series ‘Individual Beings Relocated’

Her process of art-making begins with conceptualized photographs, documented in a colonial space and eventually transformed and minimally manipulated into cyanotype prints. She often uses her own body as the subject in her work.


She is highly concerned over the representation of black women within photography. She aims through her work to influence and challenge the norms of photography.


Part of artist Dimakatso Mathopa’s ongoing printmaking series ‘Individual Beings Relocated’

Her prints challenge colonial narratives as she challenges the representation of women in South African history.


“My experience as a black woman critically informs my art making. I tend to receive and respond quite differently due to my social experiences as a black woman living in a post-colonial South Africa.” - Dimakatso Mathopa

Part of artist Dimakatso Mathopa’s ongoing printmaking series ‘Individual Beings Relocated’

She achieves this challenge by subverting the colonial gaze and placing emphasis on the importance of the black subject occupying space regardless of the societal representation.


The depictions of black subjects throughout history have been instrumental in building the present stereotypes that stand out vividly in the representations of black women in South Africa today.

Part of artist Dimakatso Mathopa’s ongoing printmaking series ‘Individual Beings Relocated’

In her ongoing series ‘Individual Beings Relocated’ Mathopa aims to deconstruct and reconstruct how colonialism has historically shaped the representations of a black woman.


Photographing herself in a ‘colonial space’, perform ing the role of the ‘black subject’ using her semi-naked body and transforming the photographic images into cyanotype prints allow her to redeem her own personal narratives and tell the stories of these Individual beings relocated.

Part of artist Dimakatso Mathopa’s ongoing printmaking series ‘Individual Beings Relocated’

“My body of work interrogates the representations of black women and colonialism in order to question historical representations of black women. I do so by unpacking the historical representation of the black subject and the stereotypes that have instigated these representations of black women in a South African context.” - Dimakatso Mathopa


Part of artist Dimakatso Mathopa’s ongoing printmaking series ‘Individual Beings Relocated’

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