John Kotzé | Zimbabwe

“What I look for in all my paintings is not just the objects depicted, but especially the abstract pattern and rhythm created by collections of sometimes banal objects or scenes of everyday life. These underlying patterns might derive from the manner in which a vendor stacks her goods or some natural intrinsic visual rhythm created by reflections of the sun off shiny metal” 

John Kotzé was born in 1957 in Lilongwe, Malawi, and moved to Zimbabwe in the 1980s where he currently lives and works.

Kotze is a self-taught artist who finds iration in the many commonplace scenes that often pass unnoticed through our lives and his realistic oil paintings encapsulate moments and objects of everyday life. 

In these scenes, John brings his particular eye to focus on what might pass us by in the daily rush that is urban life in southern Africa.

Although his paintings appear objective and unassuming, these snapshots are given focus through the artist’s attention to detail, his use of perspective, repetition and rhythm, and the way in which he foregrounds the material in order to tell a story. 

In 2009 Kotzé was selected to represent Zimbabwe at Documenta 12 in Kassel, Berlin, Germany.

Group exhibitions

2022
African identities, AKKA Project Venice, Venice, Italy

2019
Zeitz MOCAA exhibition, Five Bhobh – Painting at the End of an Era

2018
Museum of Contemporary African Art, Five Bhob Exhibition, Cape Town
Gallery Delta, Harare, State of the Land Exhibition
Annual Exhibition, National Gallery of Zimbabwe (from 2011)

Solo exhibitions

2011 
Abstract and Double Edge at the National Gallery of Zimbabwe, Harare 

2001 
Juxtapose at Gallery Delta, Harare, Zimbabwe

Selected Works

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