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The artworks of Luthando Dyasop and Gerard Sekoto.

 The artworks of Luthando Dyasop and Gerard Sekoto.

Two dramas of South African art by Luthando Dyasop and Gerard Sekoto.

The stories behind the beautiful as well as diverse artworks made by two very unique South African artists.

The Song of the Pick by Gerard Sekoto

Nine nine black men raise their arms with a pick in both hands. They are one second away from striking the earth in a massive, normal, all-day crash of steel. Sekoto does not show their faces. This is a symbol of their anonymous and faceless energy. Which rises in the painting above the head of a white supervisor of their labour. It is a powerful and expressionistic depiction of action and inaction. As well as of the heartbreaking reality of power and powerlessness of the past, present and the future. The scene depicted cuts to the heart of colonial and apartheid control of South African society. He truly captured the heartbreaking sadness and cruelness of how our country used to treat its citizens of colour. There is no limit to Sekoto’s classic painting.

Fapla attack on MK at Viana camp by Luthando Dyasop

The MK soldiers from the Moncada detachments posted a banner stating “No To Bloodshed. We Need Only Conference”. Yet instead of the promised conference, the MK High Command called in armored personnel carriers and troops. Who are shooting at fleeing MK soldiers and even shot dead one of their colleagues. Dyasop tells his entire story and experience during the war in his autobiography. He was the MK soldier who had fired at the advancing APC in self-defence. He had also killed one of the Fapla attackers, leading to a heavy punishment for himself by the ANC security department. He expresses sincere sorrow at the end of the book for the death of that soldier. His painting is breathtaking, emotional and tremendously expressive.

Danielle Arndt