Phillemon Hlungwani

Phillemon Hlungwani is recognised as one of the most accomplished contemporary artists working in South Africa. He is best known for his large-scale charcoal drawings depicting scenes from rural life, informal settlements and African women.

He grew up in a close-knit community near Giyani in rural Limpopo Province. His work is influenced by this and expresses a deep sense of the community and traditional values which is reinforced by giving his work titles of proverbs in his mother tongue, xiTsonga. He suggests that people who live in the simplest places with few possessions can still lead good, dignified lives and remain happy. They may have places to go and things to do, but they know who they are – where they have come from and where they are going. This is to be celebrated.

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