Catalogue > At random

Simon Gush

Calvin and Holiday

Vidéo | hdv | noir et blanc | 11:41 | Afrique du sud | 2015

Lazy Nigel explores the small industrial town of Nigel in the East Rand of Johannesburg during weekends. The video starts with its landscapes of industrial complexes and factories, devoid of employees. As the film and my filming -which took place over a number of weekends- progress, a variety of local activities are revealed. Many of the town industry employees leave to return to their families, who often lived elsewhere. I wanted look at what remained. The film explores laziness as a construct. I am interested in unpacking the fact that work is traditionally seen as the major locus of our identity. Time off from our jobs allows us to engage in other activities that may not be seen as productive in a traditional sense. These activities can be social, political or creative, allowing us to think of our value in different ways and, as such, offer new ways to think about our identity.

Simon Gush (b.1981, Pietermaritzburg), living in Johannesburg. He was a 2011 Fellow at the Gordon Institute for Performing and Creative Arts, University of Cape Town, and completed postgraduate studies at the Hoger Instituut van Schone Kunsten in Ghent, Belgium, in 2008. Solo shows include After Work at Galerie Jette Rudolph, Berlin and 9 o`clock, at the National Arts Festival, Grahamstown (both 2015), Red at the Goethe-Institut, Johannesburg (2014); 1st and 3rd at Galerie West, The Hague, and 4 for Four at SMAK, Ghent (both 2010), in addition to six previous exhibitions at Stevenson, Cape Town and Johannesburg. Group shows include Artists Engaged? Maybe at Fundação Calouste Gulbenkian, Lisbon (2014); the 2nd Montevideo Biennial, Uruguay (2014); My Joburg at La Maison Rouge, Paris, and the Staatliche Kunstsammlungen, Dresden (2013); Halakasha at the Standard Bank Gallery, Johannesburg (2010); 1910-2010: From Pierneef to Gugulective, Iziko South African National Gallery, Cape Town (2010) and the 2009 Luleå Summer Biennial, Sweden. In 2015 the academic workshop Red Assembly, with African Critical Inquiry Programme was held in East London around his exhibition Red. Gush was awarded the Jury prize at the Bamako Encounters Biennale (2015).