Categorized | Arts & Entertainment

CWAM presents “After the Thrill is Gone”

Nicklaus Wilcher
A&E Editor

Starting Tues., Sept. 5, The College of Wooster Art Museum (CWAM) will present a new exhibit, “After the Thrill is Gone: Fashion, Politics, and Culture in Contemporary South African Art.”

Curator Andrew Hennlich, a professor of art at Western Michigan University commented on the exhibit. “Nelson Mandela’s victory in the 1994 elections marked the transition toward a new South Africa,” said Hennlich. “However, South Africa’s continued legacies of dispossession and inequality render the present-day country insubstantially different from its apartheid predecessor. These cycles of repetition expose the reality of South Africa’s social conditions.”

I suggest spending your Saturday afternoon engaging with art that coalesces out of the struggle with apartheid, dispossession and inequality. Going to a gallery is not just a viewing or a catharsis-like blockbuster movie night, but an implicit conversation with the political and social commentary given by the works.

“After the Thrill is Gone” features over 40 of those statements in the form of “video, sculpture, installation, photography, works on paper and textiles” from 13 artists.

Even though an American gallery patron might be divorced from the specific context of South African apartheid politics, we all can and should confront the intersection of fashion and “representation, identity, memory, xenophobia, violence in the domestic sphere and allegories of nationalism.” The United States has not yet transcended these issues.

I also encourage you to go to the opening reception Thursday (Sept. 14, 6:30-8 p.m.), and not just to steal the delicious toasted brie. Every reception comes packaged with a gallery talk from the curator at 7 p.m.,

“After the Thrill is Gone” runs Sept. 12- Nov. 12 (closed Oct. 6-16) at CWAM in the Ebert Art Center. CWAM is open Tuesday through Friday from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. and Saturday and Sunday from 1-4 p.m. It’s open to the public and free!

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