ABOUT THE ARTIST
Andrew Kayser (b. 1975, South Africa) is a contemporary artist living and working in Johannesburg, South Africa. He graduated from the Royal Academy of Art, Den Haag, Netherlands in 2001, participating in several exhibitions in Europe before returning to South Africa in 2005.
After a lengthy struggle with alcoholism, Kayser regained sobriety, resuming his professional practice in 2014. He has since held 4 solo exhibitions and has had work shown at numerous international art fairs.
“Doubt, ambiguity and contradiction are central themes in my work: it is my desire to elicit more than one interpretation from the viewer; to see and understand that it is not a matter of EITHER/OR, but rather BOTH/AND. In so doing an attempt is made to investigate and acknowledge the privilege of being born white in South Africa and the benefits incurred at the expense of others.
The suburban landscape is ubiquitous to the majority of white South Africans, and by extension Western society as a whole. It is where we grow up, go to school, walk our dogs. It is the space where lazy weekend barbecues are enjoyed, where children play on manicured lawns in spacious, well-kept gardens or cavort merrily in swimming pools. It is the space that divides and separates us, the veil that conceals the economic and racial disparities that afflict South African society. It is this space that informs most of the work that encompasses my practice over the last 3 years. In many ways my work functions as a critique and an attempt to reconcile that this is the world of privilege I too come from.
I try to create an absurd, ambivalent, darkly humorous reality where, while you may lose your footing, you have no choice but to abandon yourself to the pleasures of the surface, and in so doing be able to recognise the need to question our belief systems, challenge dogma and acknowledge that ultimately we are deeply flawed, muddled creatures aspiring to idealised notions and perfect lives. But that is okay, if we recognise this, we may experience a fragile necessary grace.” — Andrew Kayser