William Kentridge ★★★★★ Royal Academy of Arts | Sep 24 - Dec 11, 2022

William Kentridge is an amazingly prolific South African artist who works in an astonishing variety of media. To date, this is the largest exhibition of his work in the UK and the project was four and a half years in development. It is surprisingly comprehensive, starting with charcoal drawings and linocuts, extending through Kentridge's films, sculptures, tapestries and theatrical projects. There is even a look at his work in the opera. Kentridge is an artist whose work is rooted in his home, Johannesburg, and in South Africa, but his appeal is universal. It is easy to identify with his sharp look at topical issues and political injustice, and with his unsparing exposure of human frailty and folly which is wryly empathetic. Indeed, all these pieces reward the time invested in their contemplation. We particularly enjoyed the films and the Black Box / Chambre Noire (2005) presentation. This exhibition is completely captivating, and our one bit of advice would be to set aside enough time in order to relish all that it has to offer. Or perhaps even better, reward yourself with a second visit!

Rated: ★★★★★

Reviewed by J.C.
Image: William Kentridge, Notes Towards a Model Opera, 2015.

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